Towards the latter stages of last year Hard Rock International began to tease the first finished areas of its $1.5bn Hollywood development, featuring a world’s first guitar shaped hotel that stretched 450 feet into the Florida sky.
Jim Allen, HRI chairman and Seminole Gaming CEO, has previously stressed that once complete the property “will put South Florida on the map as a world-class gaming destination” and “the gaming industry will never be the same”.
And despite some initial scepticism a similar design was also unveiled when the firm released a full scale model of its proposed integrated resort on Hokkaido, Japan’s northernmost island, earlier in the year, as the race to secure one of three IR licences heats up.
With recent news stating that hotel rooms quickly sold out for the Thursday 24 October debut, Bo Guidry, president at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Hollywood, has touched upon how the unique shape has been received and if this could be a much more prominent feature of further future properties: “Everyone I meet is in awe of this architectural marvel.
“As the construction progressed and the shape of the building became more prominent, it really became a point of pride for the community and our employees.
“The addition of this $1.5bn integrated resort raises the bar substantially on every front“
“It’s certainly a topic of conversation for everyone who has seen it from the highway and when flying into the Fort Lauderdale airport. As the first building of its kind, it is really capturing the imagination of a number of people from around the globe. Wouldn’t every city want such an iconic structure?”
The economic impact to be felt on the South Florida region has also been a crucial plus point reemphasised throughout numerous stages of the three year journey, lauded as “huge” by Allen earlier this year.
Guidry is in an understandably similar upbeat mood when addressing the impact the entity will have as completion edges ever closer: “This incredible project is slated for an October 24th grand opening. Since the groundbreaking about three years ago, the anticipation has been building for this monumental expansion,” he explains.
“The architectural and engineering masterpiece of the guitar hotel alone and the fabulous amenities that will open in tandem with the new hotel towers, create a dynamic and exciting destination that will attract new visitors from across the country as well as internationally.
“It also allows our local customers to discover new exciting spaces to be entertained. The expansion will generate over 1600 new jobs and drive economic development and business growth throughout the region.
“This destination will be in a class of its own“
“The construction site averages about 2,000 workers per day, so over the lifetime of the project the total number of jobs in that area is certainly significant.”
Competing in a bustling region of the United States that has a plethora of alternative options, Guidry concludes by justifying exactly why Hard Rock Hollywood is primed for maximum success, and why Allen was correct in his previous future predictions: “South Florida already has a lot to offer as a destination – a beautiful location known for its pristine beaches, coastal lifestyle, exceptional dining and a world-renowned nightlife scene. The addition of this $1.5bn integrated resort raises the bar substantially on every front.
“We are offering luxurious accommodations encompassing everything from plush suites overlooking our legendary lagoon pool to exclusive suites with private pools and patios. We don’t have to compete with the beach — our guests will be able to access their very own beach area, complete with lounge chairs and personalised cocktail service and a 13.5 acre water feature that will offer everything from paddleboards to kayaks.
“The new Hard Rock live entertainment venue will feature A-list entertainment, comedy acts and sporting events. Our restaurants and nightlife featuring top level DJ’s will be off the charts, but the real differentiator will be the gaming options for our guests – upon completion we will offer 3,000 of the most popular slots, 193 table games and a brand new 45 table poker room.
“Put all that together in one complex and you truly have an exceptional resort. This destination will be in a class of its own and builds the foundation for South Florida to emerge as a new hub for world-class gaming and entertainment.”