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Hard Rock Hotel at Universal Orlando
Ranked #44 of 340 Hotels in Orlando
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersBronze level
Reviewed July 11, 2013

We really enjoyed our stay at the HRH Universal Orlando. It was the perfect atmosphere for our "tween" aged kids. The staff was friendly and helpful, and the location is great. It is an easy walk to the retaurants and both theme parks. The free Express Passes when staying on site are a great perk. The pool area is very nice, with the option to order food and drinks from your lounge chair. We upgraded to the roomier deluxe 2-queen room plus sleeper sofa since we have three kids, and were happy we did since we had a lot more space (we booked with an Annual Pass discount, so the rate was not quite so high). I am rating this hotel 4 stars instead of 5 because I think the parking fee (surface lot, self-parking) of $18 per night is too high; and they do not have a mini-fridges in each room for guest use. I'm not looking to eat meals in the hotel room, but it is really nice to be able to keep cold drinks and snacks in the room. They even charge you for the Keurig coffee packets in the room if you use them, as well as Wifi. Disney deluxe hotels are also expensive, however they do provide a mini-fridge, free coffee in the rooms, and free self-parking (and maybe even free wifi now?). The Express Passes from HRH were really great, though, since we visited during spring break and lines were sometimes long. We will pay the higher prices to stay on site if we go to US again at a busy time.

Stayed: April 2013, traveled with family
1  Thank slwm
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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5,826 - 5,832 of 8,967 reviews

Reviewed July 11, 2013

My husband, 9-year-old son, and I chose to stay at the Hard Rock Hotel for the perks and the proximity to the parks. We were not disappointed! The HRH is no more than 10 minutes away if you walk the paved trails and less if you catch a water taxi. The theme is fun with paraphernalia from many musicians. We stayed on the 4th floor where there was a great collection of hats worn by Elton John. The grounds were beautiful and provided many areas to walk, relax, and take in nature's beauty.

The staff was friendly, but the bellhops may have been a little too friendly. After an 18-hour drive, the last thing we wanted was to have a "salesman" bellhop, however, we did. The bellhop was so eager to help us with our luggage, he didn't give my husband or I time to fully close a suitcase and most the clothing inside ended up on the asphalt of the check in port. That was particularly frustrating.

We also were frustrated that, upon check in, we were informed of how and where to pick up our express passes, but were not told where to get our park passes. Having been at Disney several times, we assumed erroneously that our hotel key would work as our park ticket; it doesn't. You must print a paper ticket and then print a paper express pass in order to go to the park.

The hotel itself was fun. My son loved the dive-in movie and while the pool is not deep (it's deepest point is 4 foot, 6 inches, it is family friendly. My son especially loved the water slide and the tennis tables that were near the pool.

Room Tip: We used a tip to stay on the opposite side of the pool; it was much quieter!
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  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled with family
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2  Thank MelissaKramer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 11, 2013 via mobile

This hard rock was surprisingly good value. Service was excellent & generous with the refills. Food very good quality, good portions ( didn't need to eat again all day!). Our family loved this. Oh and you must try the nacho starters- best nachos you'll get anywhere!

  • Stayed: July 2013
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Thank Snaz72
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 11, 2013

Overall we had a great stay with fantastic park benefits that really added to the value. The 7am entry to Harry Potter was AWESOME - we walked right on to all the Harry Potter rides and then continued to walk right onto all the other rides at 8am once the park opened. My kids were staying on the rides and going again!!! Lots of fun and so worth getting up early for! The Express passes are also an amazing benefit and despite it being 4th July weekend we never stood in line more than 10 mins for any ride and they rode EVERYTHING! These are great perk of being an "on-site guest".
The hotel itself - amazing location with free river boat rides directly to the park or you can take a scenic 10 min walk and be right in the gate. We had a kid suite and it was average - but clean and the bathroom was huge.
We did however have major issues in regard to our checks and final bill. Breakfast was included but twice it was added to the our bill. The second time it was actually charged to our card after we checked out!! I did call for a refund but I was assured at check out that this was not going to happen. We also had internet double charging on our bill that was removed at check out. The biggest issue was tips. We ate by the pool and service was not added to our check so we tipped 20% in cash - the service was good!! BUT at check out the server had also added an 18% tip to the check as a charge that definitely was not on the check when we signed it to charge the food to the room!!! This also happened at breakfast - we tipped in cash but 18% was added to our room charge. The check clearly states that service at 18% is added for parties of 6 or more... so why were they adding to our check for 2 when we already tipped in cash. All these extra charges were removed at check out but buyer beware... the service staff seem liberal when closing out their tips. Triple check your final bill which was emailed to us rather than delivered under our door. I highly recommend you ask for a print out on your way out of the door. We had over $250 or over charges on our bill from multiple departments within the hotel.
Also as a side note the pool is very swallow - there is one small area at 4ft but the overall pool averages 3ft so if your are lucky it may just reach your knees - not ideal if you want to cool off and dive in a pool. Also no throwing of footballs allowed - just beach balls.
We'll stay on site again due to the awesome park benefits but I think we will be trying one of the other Lowes hotels. The theming got a bit much after a day or so!

Room Tip: The kid room was spacious but the doors between the kid area and the adult area are not closing door...
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  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled with family
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2  Thank sarah c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 11, 2013

As we drove up to the hotel in our cab, a water fountain of larger than life guitars greeted us which our 2 daughters, 10 and 7 thought was very cool. The hotel itself is a large property and very impressive. The lobby had loud music which made it seem like a party's on, again very cool by our daughters standards! The check in staff were very helpful and check in was fast and easy. The porter who took us to our room was called Eggy and looked like he may have been a WWF wrestler at some point. With a bald head and a bright blue dyed goatee he was the best beginning of our trip. Funny, friendly and full of amazing tips he told us everything we needed to know. The room was spacious and comfortable. We got the fast passes for universal studios and Islands of Adventure which were free for hotel guests which saved us loads of time, got us on most rides almost immediately. The park is open an hour earlier for hotel guests which you must avail. Its only a 10 minute walk to the parks or a 5 min water ferry ride. Both are recommended coz the scenery is beautiful. College students with cycle rickshaws are also standing at the entrance of the park to cycle you back to your hotel after a long day at the parks. These are free but you need to tip the cyclists coz that's how they earn. My kids loved them. You should do the Harry Potter ride first at Islands of adventure coz the lines grow very rapidly once the park opens to the public( told to us by Eggy!) We tried the frozen butter beer which was ultra sweet but not bad. Olivers the wand shop should be visited, again very popular so go there early. Of course we couldn't leave without buying the wands! Take hats, sun screen, water bottles which you can keep refilling at the many cold water fountains in the parks. An umbrella also coz it can start raining suddenly. Kids raincoats were very helpful and can be bought inside the park. All of this in a water proof kind of bag with a zip coz some rides will get you wet! The hotel has a great little breakfast/ coffee shop on the ground floor where we had breakfast daily. Delicious donuts!! The other restaurant we ate at was by the pool called The Beach Club. Ok food but they showed a movie every night so the kids loved it. The pool is amazing! Huge with a nice long slide which the kids went on again and again. It has a little sandy area as well like it's own beach space. There's the universal city walk just beside the parks where we regulary had our meals. Nice to walk around at night if you're not too exhausted. Only thing missing was a 7 Eleven or some grocery store where we could have bought snacks. There's nothing like it nearby so I would bring snacks for your kids from wherever you're coming from coz food here is expensive as is usualy the case in such places. There's an outlet mall 20 min away where we spent an entire day. Great shopping! Our trip was from June 1-4. You can do a park a day. We got hardly any lines and mostly cloudy weather. We were told by the hotel staff that after June 10 it gets super busy. Overall a great experience. Would stay here again if we ever come back or might try the Portofino hotel next door just for a new experience.

Room Tip: Ask for a room close to the elevator.
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Stayed: June 2013, traveled with family
Thank Farah A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 10, 2013

If you are planning a trip to Universal Studios stay here for these reasons... Hotel is nice, pool and activities are good, the close proximity to the park, early park entrance and EXPRESS PASSES!! Unlike the 30 minute bus ride you can have staying at Disney, here you walk out of the pool gate and walk less than what I would guess is a 100 yards and you are at the park entrance. It is so convenient. With the early admittance for on site guests, we went on the Harry Potter ride 3 times before the park even opened... In June when the park would normally be packed. You also get free Express Passes, which means you basically go to the front of the line every ride, every time. Talk about a time saver! This enabled us to experience attractions 2 and 3 times. The hotel also showed movies at the pool at night which was very relaxing. I would highly recommend Hard Rock if you are going to Universal.

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank Dmctimm
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 10, 2013

Just checked out with our 3 teens. They had an amazing time. The hotel is very safe, you feel very comfortable just letting them loose to explore. They were very close to the parks, and the fast pass made it easy for them to enjoy the park in a very small amount of time and come back to the hotel to enjoy the other amenities.

Room Tip: Next time I will upgrade to club level.
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  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled with family
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Thank Lindendad1972
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hard Rock Hotel at Universal Orlando

Address: 5800 Universal Blvd, Orlando, FL 32819-7834
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Florida > Central Florida > Orlando
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#16 Luxury Hotel in Orlando
#30 Family Hotel in Orlando
#32 Green Hotel in Orlando
#39 Romantic Hotel in Orlando
#40 Business Hotel in Orlando
Price Range: $278 - $604 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Hard Rock Hotel at Universal Orlando 4*
Number of rooms: 650
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

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