Recommend August 2013 - (Page 38)

mexico onsitereview F E B R U A R Y 2 0 13 Rockin’ It in VALLARTA One of two main pools at the Hard Rock Hotel Vallarta. hitting Mexico’s sunny shores in Cancun and Vallarta. Riviera Maya’s rendition is set to premiere later this year. setting the stage ⏟ “We’ve differentiated the brand with exotic experiences, authentic experiences, iconic architecture, lavish dining options and upscale ambiance.” Frank Maduro, Vice President of Marketing, All Inclusive Collection donna ray When rocker Eric Clapton donated a Fender Lead II guitar to mark his favorite seat at London’s Hard Rock Cafe in 1979, he did more than permanently reserve his perch at the quirky American diner. The axeman extraordinaire sparked what is today an enduring Hard Rock tradition of displaying authentic music memorabilia at its cafes, hotels, casinos and live music venues around the globe. We roll in to check out the newest among these 177 “museums” at the beachfront Hard Rock Hotel Vallarta, the former Vallarta Palace that was upgraded, reflagged and re-opened in August 2012. The 348-room Riviera Nayarit resort joins Hard Rock’s expanding all-inclusive portfolio that launched in Punta Cana before 38 august 2013 38-41 MX HardRock.indd 38 Equal parts rock shrine and resort, the property plays up the decadency tune with its “All day, all night, all included” mantra. “We didn’t want Hard Rock to fall into an all-inclusive sea of sameness,” says Frank Maduro, v.p. of marketing for the All Inclusive Collection. “We’ve differentiated the brand with exotic experiences, authentic experiences, iconic architecture, lavish dining options and upscale ambiance.” Since music is considered the universal language, you’d expect Hard Rock to sing its message loud and clear. The resort nails it across the board, from guitar pick employee nametags to the signature Hard Rock tattoo created by hundreds of instruments mounted on a lobby wall. At check-in, the staff encourages us to indulge our fantasies and live a vacation life of excess. They jump-start the process by providing a code for downloading a 15-song playlist with Hard Rock’s The Sound of Your Stay program. We could also tap into our inner rock star by requesting room service delivery of a Fender guitar, mini-amplifier and SOUL by Ludacris headphones. It’s easy to linger inside even on a sunny day. The 7-story, atriumstyle lobby sets the stage for gawking at such memorabilia as Mick Jaggar’s fringed leather vest, Katy Perry’s diva dresses, Prince’s “cloud” guitar, and a dramatic photo row starring Madonna, Rihanna, Elvis and James Brown. Hard Rock keeps it edgy by refreshing displays with items from its 73,000-piece collection that just keeps growing. The star of the lobby show is a massive 70 ft. x 40 ft. mosaic of Carlos Santana playing guitar that’s composed of 2,800 LP record covers. This one is a hit especially with vinyl-era guests who spot covers from their own collections. On each floor, elevators open to a large-scale photo of international legends in full concert glory. Guestsrooms and suites are garnished with double jet spas, stocked mini-refrigerators, four-bottle premium liquor dispensers, LCD TVs, French balconies, complimentary WiFi, nightly turndown service, and unlimited telephone calls to the U.S., Canada and Mexico. To max out your clients’ star power, recommend the solo Rock Star Suite. With 2,511 sq. ft. of retro-vibe luxury, this 2-bedroom number ramps up the decadence with a full kitchen, spacious outdoor terrace, double jet spa and exclusive memorabilia. encores VIP treatment and themed touches flow to recreation and dining as well. Guests can regroup on shaded loungers along the resort’s 7/23/13 7:51 AM

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Recommend August 2013

Editor's Notes
Hotel Desk: Dan Hotels, Israel
Tour Talk: Jacada Travel
Avalon Expression
Cruising the Rivers of Southeast Asia
Girls & Guys Getaways in Las Vegas
Kimpton Takes Center Stage in San Francisco
South Africa: Bicycles, Horses & Wonderful Experiences
A French Twosome with SLH
Bogota, Colombia
Hard Rock Hotel Vallarta
Villa del Palmar at the Islands of Loreto
Westin Grand Cayman
Grand Case Beach Club, St. Martin
Aruba Marriott Resort

Recommend August 2013