Construction of the stadium began in 1912 and on the 21st of August 1913 the stadium officially opened with a match between Athletic Club and the Spanish champions of that year, Racing Club de Irun. The stadium counted with a capacity of 7,000 places at its opening.
The ground got gradually expanded in the following decades, however the most significant developments date from 1953 when the main stand, with its characteristic arch, was constructed. In the 20 years that followed the other three stands too were to be completely rebuilt.
A last major renovation was performed for the 1982 World Cup, during which Bilbao was one of the host cities. Three matches during the first group phase were played at the stadium.