You might think that the world’s first guitar-shaped hotel would land in a place like Nashville or Las Vegas or maybe somewhere near the Rock’n’Roll Hall of Fame. Instead, this spectacle rises 450 feet into the sky from the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood—that’s Hollywood, Florida, not Tinseltown. The colossal guitar not only holds 638 new hotel rooms, but is part of Hard Rock’s $1.5 billion expansion that includes lagoon-like pool areas, 150,000 square feet of gambling, and a gleaming marble promenade lined with boutique retail shops.
Dining, as you’d expect, runs the gamut from high-end restaurants to more approachable, casual fare. Smoking is allowed in most of the casino areas, and the retail promenade has a Davidoff cigar shop and lounge where you can light up before and after dinner. In April, the hotel will become cigar central when it hosts Big Smoke Meets WhiskyFest, an unprecedented, cigar-friendly event that combines the best of the premium cigar world with the finest in Scotch, Bourbon and other craft spirits.
The guitar hotel officially opened this past October and hopes to entice a world-class clientele, not only with its oasis of meandering pools and private cabanas, but also with a concert hall dubbed Hard Rock Live, a venue that can accommodate up to 7,000 people. If you really want to live out your rock-star fantasies, you can book a Platinum King Suite at the exclusive Oasis Tower, another upscale addition to the Hard Rock in Hollywood. Just try not to throw a television off the balcony or trash the room before you check out.