My one word summary for this resort would be SPACIOUS. The layout of the building, the pool, and the rooms all easily earned this title. Beautiful grounds! Overall, entire property was well maintained. One of the onsite restaurants, The Kitchen, offered many desirable options and quality of food was high. Atmosphere of the restaurant, however, was average. Staff throughout the resort were friendly and welcoming. Bartenders made some mean drinks! Be sure to try one of their mojitos. Can't beat location if you are planning on visiting Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure. Express Passes, usable at both Parks for any day of paid admission, definitely made the cost of the stay more valuable. Easy walk to Parks and City Walk and/or complimentary water taxi allowed for spontaneity in daily activities. Daily dive-in movies were a nice bonus. Outdoor pool and ping pong tables, as well as shuffleboard were also features which enhanced the stay. Utilized the car service to/from Disney one afternoon and night. $40 each way plus gratuity was worth it to ride in style (Escalade and Yukon) with personable drivers.
View from our 5th floor Deluxe Room was the rooftop of the lobby entrance. Not pretty. I planned on spending a good bit of money at the Parks, but didn't expect to drop so much at the hotel. Naive of me, I guess. Just about everything costs extra - use of the Fitness Center, Wifi, use of the internet and/or printer in the Business Center, etc. I was actually a little afraid to make myself a cup of coffee with the Keurig in our room, figuring I would get charged for doing so. Down at The Kitchen, a cup of coffee was $3.50 and an OJ was $4. Dropped $52 for breakfast 2 of the days we were there - family of 4 with kids ages 7 and 9, and because I'm a light eater, especially in the morning, I normally just eat their leftovers as opposed to ordering my own. Unfortunately, the absence of a fridge and microwave in the room pretty much forced us to eat on property and not keep leftovers, as we normally have them. There is even a fee to have your mini-bar fridge un-stocked if you want to use it for your own personal use. Trust me, my friends will tell you, I'm not cheap. If anything, I spend money a little too well so for me to take note of the extensive fees and high prices says something! Had a couple of minor cleaning and maintenance issues which the Manager assured me would be taken care of, but one was definitely not. It wasn't a horrible inconvenience so i just let it go. Lastly, was quite frustrated that the pool slide, which had been calling my kids names from the time they saw it, was not functioning on multiple days of our stay, resulting in non-use the entire stay. The Manager was vague, stating it was a maintenance issue with no guarantee as to when it would be resolved, and staff explanations were inconsistent. My guess is that it was shut down due to the low occupancy (operating costs likely exceeded worth).
We will likely visit Universal Studio Parks again and when we do, I would definitely consider staying here again.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Live like a rock star and savor the perks of rock 'n' roll royalty with impeccable accommodations, laid-back luxurious style and show-stopping service. Located on-site at Universal Orlando Resort, Hard Rock Hotel is in the heart of the excitement of Universal Studios Florida, Universal's Islands of Adventure, and Universal CityWalk. Guests of this hotel enjoy exclusive theme park benefits. Skip the regular lines at most attractions with FREE Universal Express Unlimited ride access - a benefit worth $89 per person, per day**. You can also take advantage of Early Park Admission one hour before the theme park opens, and more! (valid theme park admission required.) ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Hard Rock Hotel Orlando
- Hotel Hard Rock
- Hard Rock Resort
- Hard Rock Orlando
- Hard Rock Cafe Hotel Orlando
- Universal Hard Rock Hotel