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Hard Rock at New Height

Hard Rock at New Height

Hard rock symbol is a guitar. The oversized guitar has long been a beacon for the Hard Rock Casino chain, but the Seminole Hard Rock Hollywood and Seminole Gaming Company looking to take that iconic symbol to new heights. Artist renderings for a colossal guitar-shaped hotel tower stretching 34 stories and containing 800 rooms were unveiled Monday morning during a news conference with Gov. Rick Scott. The tower is the feature attraction in the Seminole Tribe’s $1.8 billion expansion plans. The structure looks every bit a guitar in scale but doesn’t have a neck.

“We could have easily just built some rectangular building ... but the tribe is once again trying to create something that is iconic, that creates international tourism coming to Florida,” said Seminole Gaming CEO Jim Allen. “We truly believe that that design alone will create additional tourism.” The expansion plans, contingent on the Legislature’s approval of a deal brokered between the tribe and the governor, include the hotel tower and restaurants. The expansion is expected to bring nearly 20,000 jobs to Florida, the Seminoles said.

The hotel will increase the complex’s rooms to 1,273 and add five new restaurants, a buffet and nightclub at its complex on U.S. 441 north of Stirling Road, the Seminoles said. Allen said the tribe is committed to rivaling Las Vegas and other casino destinations around the world. “We truly think this will rival not only anything in Florida, but Atlantis and anything in the world,” Allen said, pointing to an artist rendering on an easel depicting a pool space, as Scott sat in front of him.

The expansion includes spending almost $100 million on swimming pool space, Allen said. The plan adds a second pool and new pool bar. “Florida is about pools and the beaches and the ocean.” He said that while the aim is to create a destination that will continue to attract crowds many years from now, the expansion doesn’t stretch far beyond the casino’s current footprint. While Allen focused on the Hollywood expansion, he also discussed plans for the Seminole Hard Rock Tampa, which will have new poker rooms, stores and restaurants. If so, the Hard Rock’s metallic guitar hotel could be joining the South Florida skyline as early as the summer of 2018.

Seminole Gaming