Another news-maker this year was the opening of the Hard Rock Hotel Cancun (hardrockhotels.com), one of only three all-inclusive Hard Rock properties in the world (with a fourth on the way in 2013).
The lights have gone up, the first booming chord has been struck and the Hard Rock Hotel Cancun is now well into an upscale, all-inclusive riff with its 601 stunning rooms in a 12-story paradise of rock memorabilia that’s already bringing a chorus of praise and rave reviews from leisure and business guests alike.
Here—and throughout Mexico—some of the all-inclusive Palace Resorts are doing a classic fade out and segueing into a brand-new tune that’s all Hard Rock Hotel—stamped, sealed and delivered with an all new interior design, dining venues and public spaces that pay homage to the rock gods of yesteryear and today, all promoted via Palace Resorts’ new marketing arm, The All-Inclusive Collection.
And make no mistake, while the geography is vintage Cancun with gorgeous sandy beaches—mostly appropriated from other parts of the Caribbean—a refreshingly regular dose of addictive sunshine and achingly beautiful blue sky, the Hard Rock Hotel Cancun is all about the music. In fact, guests are introduced to the hotel’s Sound of Your Stay program—a brand-wide music program that encourages them to download complimentary, specially selected playlists upon check-in—guaranteeing a rock ‘n roll experience including a complimentary software they can use during their stay to learn to be their own rock ‘n roll star.
In the main lobby, guests are greeted by a Led Zeppelin drum kit, as well as an equally regal collection of rock memorabilia, from a Prince costume to guitars once owned by rock greats—all to the tune of piped-in rock classics. Even the massive pool area is presided over by the “Vibe Manager,” who produces the music he deems appropriate to the time of day and mood of the guests. The property will also host live concerts—as it does at its other properties—offered free to guests at the resort.
While the welcoming logo over the entryway of the Hard Rock Hotel Cancun reads, “Welcome to the Jungle,” it’s really more retro rock talk than reality because the Hard Rock Hotel Cancun is thoroughly family-friendly. In fact, says Frank Maduro, v.p. of marketing, The All Inclusive Collection, “It’s a juggling game, crafting your message to balance marketing to families and marketing to the young singles market,” and accordingly, their current approach is to market to families during the summer months and the adult market in the more lucrative fall/winter months.
One of the most popular room categories at the hotel, in fact, is the Deluxe Family category, with two connecting suites, one with a king bed and another with two double beds, plus a double jacuzzi, L’Oreal Kids bath products, and bathrobes and slippers for children. Maduro says agents should book at least six months out for these family suites because in 2013, Hard Rock Hotel Cancun will introduce its Little Big Club partnered with HIT Entertainment to incorporate the company’s characters Thomas & Friends, Barney, Bob the Builder and Angelina Ballerina. The life-size characters will interact with the kids at the club’s mini theater, where they’ll form their own rock band, plus have themed interactive play areas for kids.
Rooms are stunning with double jacuzzis, all the amenities any true rock star could ever want, and balconies and terraces (most with outstanding views). There are five restaurants, including a Brazilian steakhouse and a first-rate Mexican restaurant, as well as an excellent buffet-style venue for all-day dining, plus five bars, of course (this is rock ‘n roll heaven, after all). The resort’s Rock Spa provides ocean views from the spa’s relaxation room and has 20 treatment rooms and outdoor palapa-style massage areas. All-inclusive rates for two adults run from $369 per night, or stay five nights for $1,845 and take advantage of the $1,500 credit offer.