Travel Tools from The Unofficial Guide™ Team  -  See Our Books Here!
  • Background Image

    Hard Rock Hotel

Subscribe Now: 1 Full Year for Only $7.95!

Get full access to the UOR Crowd Calendar, Lines Mobile App, Touring Plans and More!


"Our TouringPlans subscription was a lifesaver on our trip. One of the busiest days of the year, and we never waited longer than 20 minutes!"

- Smith Family, KY

Subscription Type:

1 Year UOR Subscription ($7.95)

Payment Method:

Pay With Your Credit Card
Pay With Your PayPal Account
Click here to close the subscription form

Hard Rock Hotel Information: Rooms, Pools, Dining, and More


The Hard Rock Hotel is the hippest place to lay your head as long as older rock music is still "hip" (and our middle-aged authors just assume that's the case). Opened in 2001, the Hard Rock Hotel is one of Universal Orlando's most expensive on-site resorts, but it is also the closest resort to Universal’s theme parks. The exterior has a California Mission theme, with white stucco walls, arched entryways, and rust-colored roof tiles. Inside, the lobby is a tribute to rock-and-roll style, all marble, chrome, and stage lighting. The lobby’s walls are decorated with enough concert posters, costumes, and musical instruments to start another wing of Cleveland’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame; ask the front desk for information about a self-guided memorabilia tour.

The Rooms

The Hard Rock's 8 floors hold 650 rooms and 29 suites, with the rooms categorized into standard, deluxe and club-level tiers. Standard rooms are 375 square feet, slightly larger than rooms at Disney's moderate resorts and a bit smaller than most Disney deluxe rooms. The Hard Rock Hotel completed a top-to-bottom "remastering" of their rooms in early 2015, giving the formerly masculine decor a major makeover with light grey walls and linens, pastel furniture, and colorful retro-inspired accents, like throw pillows crocheted with phrases like "Quiet Please" and "Be Nice." To be frank, the style looks more bubblegum pop than hard rock, but the brighter look is a bit more soothing after you stumble back from a fatiguing day in the parks.

Standard rooms are furnished in with two queen beds with smooth, plush and comfortable linens. Rooms also include a flat screen LCD television, refrigerator, coffee machine, an alarm clock, and two separate charging areas.

A six-drawer dresser and separate closet with sliding doors ensures enough there's storage space. In addition, most rooms have a table with chairs and a small desk with two chairs. An optional roll-away bed, available at an extra charge, allows the standard rooms to sleep up to 5 people.

Each room's dressing area features a sink and hairdryer. A separate door leads to the bathroom, which includes a shower, toilet and small sink. The bathroom is probably large enough for most adults to get ready in the morning while another person gets ready in the dressing area. Water pressure was above average in the rooms we tested, and the toiletries were good.

Guests staying in standard rooms can choose from one of three views: standard, which can include anything from walkways and parking lots to lawns and trees; garden view, which includes the lawn, trees and (in some rooms) the waterway around the resort, and pool view, which includes the Hard Rock's large pool.

A step up from standard rooms are deluxe rooms. Deluxe rooms with king beds are around 500 square feet and can accommodate up to 3 people with an optional roll-away bed rental. These rooms feature a U-shaped sitting area in place of the second bed, and the rest of the amenities are the same as in standard rooms. Deluxe queen rooms are also 500 square feet and can hold up to 5 people using a pullout sofa, located in a small cubby just off the room's entrance.

Pool, Gym and Recreation

The Hard Rock's pool is an attraction all by itself and is the place to see and be seen. Situated in the middle of the resort's C-shaped main building, the 12,000-square foot pool includes a 250-foot water slide, sand beach, and underwater speakers so you can hear the music while you swim. Adjacent to the pool are a fountain play area for small children, sand volleyball court, hot tubs and a poolside bar. The entire pool area is lined with tall palm trees, but if they don't provide enough shade (or you just want to make an impression), private cabanas are available for rent.

The Hard Rock also has a small, functional fitness center. Universal's nearby Portofino Bay hotel has a full-service Mandara spa.

A supervised activity center, Camp Lil Rock, serves kids 4 from 5 pm until 11:30 pm (Sunday through Thursday) or midnight (Friday and Saturday). Cost is $15 per hour per child, plus $15 per meal. Call (407) 503-2200 for reservations.

On-Site Dining

On-site dining includes The Kitchen, a full-service, casual restaurant open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and featuring American food such as burgers, steaks and salads. Brave and/or crazy souls can take part in theKitchen Sink Challenge, which consists of eating The Kitchen burger, a side of fries, a fried pickle, and the humongous Kitchen Sink cake within a 30 minute time limit. The Kitchen hosts character dinners every Saturday, along with strolling magicians on Fridays, “Kids Can Cook” activities on Tuesday through Thursdays, and random celebrity chef sightings. The Palm Restaurant is an upscale steakhouse available for dinner only. There is also an Emack & Bolio's ice cream shop and grab-and-go marketplace on the lower level; the stylish Velvet Bar in the lobby for drinks after dark and monthly Velvet Sessions rock & roll cocktail parties (visit for the schedule and to request an invitation); and the BeachClub bar and grill by the pool. And, of course, there's a Hard Rock Cafe restaurant just a short distance away at CityWalk.

If all that musical immersion puts you in the mood to jam, you can borrow one of 20 Fender guitars – including Stratocasters, Telecasters, and even bass guitars – with amp and headphones for free (after a $1000 credit card deposit) through Hard Rock's “The Sound of Your Stay” program; ask the front desk for details.

Hotel Photos

Strengths and Weaknesses

Strengths Weaknesses
Shortest walk to Universal Studios Expensive dining
Pool Extra charge for parking
On-site dining options
Glitzy lobby

Hard Rock Hotel Dining

Commuting Times to the Parks
Park Resort
Universal Studios Florida 10 min
Islands of Adventure 10 min