A growing number of destinations are utilizing sport events as a strategic tool for revitalizing and re-qualifying themselves. The aim of this paper is to explore the value of sport events in enhancing the "quality" (in terms of image, tourist attractiveness, quality of life, etc.) of a tourist destination. This assessment is based on a case study analysis regarding the effects of sport initiatives adopted by a number of cities and countries in Italy, Europe and worldwide. The findings suggest that sport events can have different implications for host destinations: from fostering an economic and social urban "regeneration", to putting a city on a worldwide tourist map, or even changing the unequal participation of a country in the global economy.