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Conversations about musical cities in the U.S. often call upon the names of Nashville, Detroit, and New Orleans. But Daytona Beach, Florida? That city is often left out of the discussion. While attending the recent grand opening of the Hard Rock Hotel Daytona Beach, however, I saw that the iconic hotel brand is reminding travelers of the city’s musical history and bringing the sound of music back to its shores. 

The experience, which is sure to inject the love of music straight to the souls of anyone who visits, starts right at the entrance. With its white tile floors and walls, the lobby is colored only by its chic, mid-century modern furniture, the chandelier-like cascade of drum cymbals hanging over the stairs, and the music memorabilia that lines its walls—a colorful outfit once worn by Rihanna and a Taylor Swift bikini up ahead, both promising that there’s more to discover. It’s what I imagine walking into the home of a stylish rock star feels like, and that sentiment would be a common theme throughout my stay. 

A bright, neon-lit sign above the elevators evokes the song lyrics, “Come go with me,” so I do exactly that, and on my way to my guestroom, which is one of 112 with full ocean views, I encounter more music-inspired details like the album covers that hover above every room number. The album decorating my guestroom entrance? Johnny Cash’s At Folsom Prison. Classic. 

Once inside, I got my first real taste of the rock star lifestyle when I feasted my eyes on the electric Fender guitar and amp patiently waiting for me by the balcony. I strapped on the headphones and strummed a few fun yet horrible-sounding notes, and it was all thanks to the property’s 3-part Sound of Your Stay program. In addition to being able to rent Fender guitars for in-room jam sessions free of charge, guests can also download and enjoy listening to a specially curated playlist unique to the Hard Rock Hotel Daytona Beach, or they can go old school and have a Crosley turntable and vinyl records delivered to their room. For those who want to fully embrace their inner rock gods, they can choose to stay in one of the 15 Rock Royalty suites, which are an exclusive product within the hotel offering upgraded amenities, such as VIP concierge services and a pillow menu, as well as access to a private outdoor lounge area that leads directly to the pool or lobby. 

Arial view of Hard RockHotel Daytona Beach.
Ariel view of Hard Rock Hotel Daytona Beach.

As expected with any Hard Rock property, walking around the lobby and halls of the hotel shows the depth of the brand’s music memorabilia collection, which features the stage costumes of some of the world’s most well-known artists alongside some of their personal belongings like a grade school report card or favorite jacket. Highlights of the memorabilia at this particular property include a guitar from The Allman Brothers Band whose founding members grew up in Daytona Beach and an MTV VMA trophy in homage to the days when MTV hosted yearly spring break concerts on Daytona Beach. To fully appreciate the variety of items on display, recommend that your clients request a memorabilia tour, and one of the highly knowledgeable staff members at the hotel will give them the full run down, making for an even more meaningful understanding of the musical artifacts. 

Music is simply everywhere at the Hard Rock in Daytona Beach. From the guestrooms to the pool, where underwater speakers ensure you won’t miss a beat while you take a dip, Vibe Managers—yes, that’s their real title—have curated playlists to infiltrate every corner of the hotel with a wide range of musical genres and have also chosen the right lighting and scents to go with them.

“Everything is unique with the Hard Rock. It’s not a cookie-cutter brand,” says Susan Keaveney, director of marketing for the Hard Rock Hotel Daytona Beach. “Everything from the murals to the memorabilia to the decor is well thought out.” 

Wellness Mixed With Music
Just because the Hard Rock Hotel Daytona Beach may leave your clients feeling like a rock star doesn’t mean they have to wreck their bodies like celebs on the road often do. With the property’s Sound Body wellness program, they’ll want to take care of themselves whether it’s at the fitness center, in their rooms using the Rock Om program, which rents complimentary yoga mats and includes on-demand yoga videos featuring not-so-typical Zen music, or with a specialty treatment at the Rock Spa & Salon. Highly recommend your clients indulge in what was the most unique treatment I have ever received at a spa: the Rhythm & Motion Synchronicity Massage. With this treatment, guests choose one of three playlists before lying on a table specially designed for this massage. As the music plays, ranging from soothing to upbeat and energetic at times, treble beats come from a speaker above guests’ heads, while the bass speakers embedded in the table send vibrations throughout their bodies. Massage therapists synchronize their techniques, pressure and rhythm with the music making for a perfectly harmonious experience.

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