Hard Rock hotel and casino coming to Lake Tahoe | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Hard Rock hotel and casino coming to Lake Tahoe

STATELINE, Nev. — Rumors of a Hard Rock hotel coming to Lake Tahoe proved to be true Thursday, after weeks of speculation as to what would become of the old Horizon Casino Resort. Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe, a fully integrated gaming resort planned for the South Shore, will replace what was once the Horizon when renovations wrap up in late 2014 or early 2015, according to an official announcement made at Heavenly Mountain Resort. "We're excited," said Don Marrandino, a gaming executive overseeing the operations for the new Hard Rock, adding. "And we're going to be ready to start rocking Lake Tahoe in (the) 2014 ski season." Once completed, the new facility will feature 539 "four-diamond" rooms, multiple restaurants and bars, an assortment of live entertainment both indoors and outdoors and "South Lake Tahoe's largest outdoor pool party," said David Park, a member of the same Park family that gained ownership of the property in March. It will also include a 25,000-square-foot casino with more than 500 slot machines and a wide variety of table games. The entire project will cost more than $50 million to complete. "We're excited about bringing a distinctive, new, resort experience to the area — one that will surely ignite the market," Park said. With music at its core, the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino's mission is to deliver a one-of-a-kind experience by combining the authenticity of the region with strong music appreciation, according to a press release. With that in mind, Park said presenting live entertainment from high-profile acts is one of the top goals of the planned hotel. "That ought to rock this town," he said, to a crowd of community leaders and stakeholders Thursday. Jon Park, a managing member of Neva One LLC with his brother, David, said the two family members will be "hands-on owners" as the project moves forward. Warner Hospitality will handle day-to-day operations at the new Hard Rock. The company and its affiliates already manage 10 gaming and non-gaming properties throughout the country. Warner Hospitality CEO Bill Warner said he's excited to see the company's entry into the northern Nevada market with the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino brand, as well as the Park family. "This, combined with the majestic and natural beauty of Lake Tahoe, will make for a resort-style experience like no other," Warner said in statement. Warner expressed his confidence in Marrandino's ability to make the Lake Tahoe Hard Rock a "must see experience" on the South Shore. Marrandino has over 20 years of senior level experience in the resort and casino industry, as well as a strong familiarity with the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino brand. He served as president and COO of Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Las Vegas from 2001 to 2003 and president of northern Nevada/general manager of Harrah's Lake Tahoe and Harveys from 2003 to 2005. In addition to managing the Lake Tahoe project, Marrandino also assists in other Warner Hospitality operations in Nevada, including Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Las Vegas, according to a Warner Hospitality press release. Thursday's announcement of a new Hard Rock hotel in the area was made about three months after the Park family said that the old Horizon would become the Park Tahoe Casino Resort. Ultimately, the decision was made to transform the property into a Hard Rock hotel, however, and Marrandino said it will be a quality addition to the community. "Let's rock Tahoe," he said.

Come as you are

"Be yourself," that's the message Don Marradino, chief operations officer for Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe wants to convey to potential employees. Marradino said applicants should dress as they wish, proudly expose tattoos and piercings and have a "rock star attitude." There will be more than 500 employees hired, for hotel, gaming, restaurant and entertainment positions. Marradino said former Horizon employees will be interviewed first. The casino resort is hiring employees for a variety of positions ranging from managers and supervisors to entry-level positions. The career center is located at 50 Highway 50 in Stateline and is available for those who do not have Internet access.There are terminals to apply. Interviews will be scheduled from applicants received online. "We are looking for talented, 'rock star' employees to join our Lake Tahoe team and provide guests with unparalleled service and a memorable mountain travel experience, as only Hard Rock Hotel & Casino can," Marradino said "If you are energetic, great at what you do, appreciate the beauty of Lake Tahoe and the spirit of rock 'n' roll, we want to hear from you." The new Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe is undergoing an approximately $60 million renovation and redesign. The property will include two renovated hotel towers with over 500 hotel rooms, several new restaurants and bars, and a 25,000 square foot casino — all designed to incorporate the exciting elements of the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino brand. Interested applicants are encouraged to visit http://www.hardrockcasinolaketahoe.com and click on the "Careers" tab to view all available positions and apply online. For more information about the Warner Hospitality, visit http://www.warnerhospitality.com.

Harveys and Hard Rock to part company

Harveys Casino Resorts is stepping out of Las Vegas, at least temporarily, along with its partnership in the operation of the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino. On Tuesday, Hard Rock Hotel, Inc., owned by Peter A. Morton, agreed to purchase Harveys’ 40 percent interest in the Las Vegas casino hotel for $45 million in cash. “Our first and foremost responsibility is to look for ways to increase shareholders’ value (from Harveys shares),” Chuck Scharer, Harveys president and chief executive officer, said on Wednesday from his Tahoe office. “For our company, this is a positive event. This is a great return on our investment for our shareholders.” The agreement should have no immediate impact for Harveys employees but it “should open up opportunities for employees in all Harveys properties,” Scharer said. The rock ‘n’ roll-themed Hard Rock Hotel and Casino opened in March, 1995 with Harveys, a minority partner, responsible for property management. It features a 339-room hotel, 28,000 square feet of casino space and one of the world’s largest collections of rock ‘n’ roll memorabilia. A Hard Rock Cafe, with restaurants around the world, adjoins the hotel/casino. The Lake Tahoe Harveys Casino Resorts receives about $5 million per year from its participation in the Hard Rock venture, according to Scharer. In a joint statement, the dissolution of the partnership was blamed on different philosophies of management and future goals for the property. A contributing factor is that Harveys is a publicly traded company and the Hard Rock is privately operated. Until Nevada gaming authorities approve the agreement, Harveys will continue to manage the property. Completion of the transaction could take four to six months, after which Hard Rock Hotel, Inc. will assume hotel/casino operations. No personnel changes are anticipated. Harveys hopes to re-enter the Las Vegas market in the future, Scharer said. Such a venture would, preferably, be as an independent venture but the cost of entering the Las Vegas market could make another partnership more feasible. “We’d like to maintain a presence in Las Vegas,” he said. “This gives us the opportunity to parlay what we’ve learned about the Las Vegas market with our partners into another venture.”

Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe celebrates 2 years in business

It has been two years since Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe opened its doors. To celebrate, Hard Rock is inviting the public to stop by Saturday, Jan. 28, for a party featuring cake and champagne, a mini-guitar giveaway, gaming promotions and a concert to bang your head to. The celebration begins at 3 p.m. with cake and champagne on the casino floor, according to a press release from Hard Rock. Later that evening Back N Black, an AC/DC tribute band, will take the stage inside Vinyl at 9 p.m. Tickets for the concert are free for backstage pass members and $10 for non-members. Tickets are available online at hardrockcasinolaketahoe.com. Those attending must be 21 or older to attend. As part of this celebration, Hard Rock will be giving guests the opportunity at $2 million through its "fame game" promotion. The fame game will run throughout the month of January and into February, with the grand finale on Sunday, Feb. 19. The Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe opened in 2015 after full renovations to the property. It offers 539 rooms, a roughly 25,000- square-foot casino, retail store, multiple restaurants and bars, and live entertainment both indoors and out. For more information on the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe, visit hardrockcasinolaketaho.com or facebook.com/hrhclaketahoe.

Hard Rock to roar in with Jaguar

The new Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe will award a new Jaguar XJ to one Backstage Pass Rewards Club Member. "We are absolutely thrilled to team up with Hard Rock on the 'Rock Enroll promotion,'" Marc Shephard, General Manager of Jaguar Land Rover Reno, said. "Like them, we are new to the area and appreciate the opportunity to introduce ourselves to the area in a fun and exciting way," Shephard added. Now through Jan. 31, 2015, all those who sign up for Hard Rock¹s Backstage Pass Rewards Club during the Rock Enroll promotion are entered to win the 340-horsepower, eight-speed, supercharged luxury car. "Partnering with Jaguar Land Rover Reno is a match made in rock 'n' roll heaven," Brooke Fiumara, Vice President of Marketing for Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe, said. For more information about Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe, visit http://www.HardRockCasinoLakeTahoe.com or http://www.Facebook.com/HRHCLakeTahoe.

New electronic Hard Rock sign first of its kind in area

Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe has installed a new 30-foot-tall sign in front of its property in Stateline, Nev., along with an attached 322–square-foot electronic message board — the first of its kind under a fairly new area plan. The sign is permitted through the Douglas County South Shore Area Plan, which was approved by the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency in September 2013 and allows certain commercial properties to install such signs in the lower Kingsbury Grade and casino core areas. At least one other casino has shown interest in adding something similar, but no additional applications have been submitted to the TRPA at this time. Hard Rock worked with the TRPA to meet compliance requirements and obtain a permit for the sign. Agency staff approved the permit on several conditions. The electronic message display must only show static content, content can change no faster than four times per hour, an automatic dimmer needs to be included so the display can adjust to ambient outside light and there can be no moving, blinking or flashing elements. When content on the message board does change, it must also do so within a second, according to the TRPA. Hard Rock has announced that it will display a new image every 15 minutes on the sign, which has effectively replaced the old Horizon Casino Resort message board in the same location. "The sign is the result of countless hours of collaboration between our team and the TRPA, among other community entities, to ensure a final product that represents a positive final product," stated the hotel's Chief Operations Officer Don Marrandino, who said Hard Rock also wanted to create a sign that was "aesthetically appealing." The new addition is a major milestone for the property's $60 million transformation to a Hard Rock hotel and casino, according to an announcement from the company. Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe is set to open Jan. 28.

Hard Rock’s global Battle of the Bands event takes Tahoe’s South Shore

The global Hard Rock Rising Battle of the Bands event, which seeks out emerging talent and offers the winner the chance to perform at halftime in Miami Gardens' Hard Rock Stadium, is set for Tahoe's South Shore. The competition takes place at Hard Rock casinos, hotels and cafes across the world, and one artist will take home the grand prize. On Saturday, May 13, the Tahoe-centric qualifying rounds kick off at Stateline's Hard Rock Hotel and Casino at 1 p.m. and guests at least 16 years of age are invited to rock out to local upcoming talent. Over 60 musicians entered the Tahoe competition, and 10 were selected to take the stage. These bands — based in areas such as Reno, Grass Valley, Boise and South Lake Tahoe itself — cover a range of genres from metal to rock, reggae to folk and indie to pop. Catch solo artists, duos and four-piece bands alike at this one-of-a-kind event you won't want to miss. The battle of the bands-style gig continues with the finale next Saturday, May 20. Both the qualifying and final rounds take place inside Vinyl at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino. Entry for the finale costs $10, and proceeds benefit the Hard Rock Heals Foundation. Visit http://www.hardrockcasinolaketahoe.com to learn more.

Hard Rock targets multiple segments of Tahoe market

STATELINE, Nev. — Positioning the new Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe to capture the various segments of the South Lake Tahoe hospitality and gaming market requires a careful balancing act for Hard Rock executives. The problem? Is the $60 million remake of the former Horizon hotel intended as a destination for Bay Area hipsters with cash to burn from newly exercised stock options, or is it a place for older folks to gamble and check out cool memorabilia from beloved rock and roll artists? What about the Lake Tahoe locals, the international ski crowds that frequent nearby Heavenly Mountain Resort in the winter or the predominately middle-class families that vacation at Lake Tahoe in the summer? The answer, says Hard Rock Chief Operations Officer Don Marrandino, is all of the above. "We will have amenities for everyone to enjoy," Marrandino said last week as he split time between the new Hard Rock development at South Lake and the iconic hotel-casino property in Las Vegas. "We spent a lot of time on memorabilia, and we have some Tahoe-specific stuff because a lot of stars live in Tahoe. There's also a lot of San Francisco and Sacramento celebrities. There's stuff from the greatest bands of all time and from young bands coming up. It will be like a museum of great one-of-a-kind rock-and-roll memorabilia." With its blend of unmatched outdoors beauty and legalized gambling, coupled with a diverse customer base ranging from billionaire technology moguls to ski lift operators, South Lake Tahoe occupies a unique position in the hospitality industry. Marrandino spent two years working at Lake Tahoe and says he's still got a good handle on how to reach the many different demographics that make up customers of Tahoe-area hotels and casinos. The property, he says, will combine cool scenery, new restaurants and bars, and one-of-a-kind art. Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe last week opened an on-site career center and website to begin hiring efforts for approximately 550 to 600 positions throughout the property, from finance, bartenders, casino entertainers, dealers, chefs, cooks, housekeepers, security, valet parking, engineers. Initial response from job seekers tripled expectations. "In these times, with casinos around the country closing, it's nice to be able to hire people," Marrandino says. "We had unbelievable amounts of people apply in the first 48 hours." Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe is slated to open in the late fourth quarter or early first quarter of 2015. Renovation work is a total transformation from the 1960s-era Horizon property. Demolition crews stripped the building to its concrete shell and construction crews are starting from a blank slate on the 539 hotel rooms and casino and other ground-floor areas. MBA Architecture and Interior Design of Reno is designing the project. Marrandino says because of the building's age there's been some asbestos abatement work, and due to Tahoe Regional Planning Agency regulations, work on the exterior of the building is limited to repainting in an approved color rather than the typical white of other Hard Rock properties. HARD ROCK PARTNERS WITH WILLIAM HILL Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe last week announced that bookmaker William Hill will operate sports book and wagering operations at the property. Hard Rock Chief Operations Officer Don Marrandino says William Hill was selected because of its experience and also because the company is known to take larger action than competing sports book operators. "A lot of people in Tahoe want to bet more than we could handle if we were an independent book," Marrandino says. "We wanted to give customers the availability to bet whatever posted limits are. William Hill brings a great package of state-of-the-art screens and sizes and betting terminals. They will give us a world-class setting and great place to watch sports with new technology. We are excited about working with them." Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe is slated to open for the early part of the 2014-2015 ski season.

Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe to celebrate grand opening this week

STATELINE, Nev. — Lake Tahoe's newest hotel and casino on the South Shore starts rocking in its newly renovated digs tomorrow after undergoing a $60 million six-month transformation. Construction crews have been working on the new Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe all the way up to the resort's grand opening, which kickoffs at 7:45 p.m. tonight on the Fire Break Kitchen & Bar patio. The public is invited to attend the event. At that time, guests will be able to try out two of the casino's dining spots: The Oyster Bar, touted as the South Shore's first raw seafood bar, and Fuel, a coffee and snack shop. The Center Bar and North Bar will also be available. At 9 p.m., a free concert will take place at Vinyl, the hotel and casino's music and entertainment venue. West coast funk and soul band Mojo Green will get the spotlight, rounding off the resort's planned entertainment for the night. "We have spent the summer and fall rehearsing for our big day, and we could not be more excited to share our new resort casino with everyone," said Don Marrandino, chief operations officer for the hotel and casino. "The grand opening is all about celebrating, thanking the South Lake Tahoe community, our friends and soon-to-be guests for their support." Instead of a traditional ribbon-cutting ceremony, an ice guitar will be smashed to signify the grand opening of the new alpine resort. Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe was first announced in July, following much speculation as to what would become of the former Horizon Casino Resort. Construction kicked off the next month. The property features 539 rooms and suites, four eateries, several bars and live indoor and outdoor entertainment, as well as 25,000 square feet of casino space with more than 500 slot machines and a variety of table games.

Hard Rock Hotel and Casino closes out Heavenly Resort’s Winter Ignite

If you've enjoyed Heavenly Mountain Resort's week-long party known as Winter Ignite, you won't want to miss the culminating event: Ignite Winter White. The pop-up party, hosted by Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, begins at 10 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 10, and lasts until 2 a.m. "Enjoy the beats of DJ Rizzo, along with dancers, an indoor snow machine, photo booth and more non-stop fun!" according to a press release from the host venue. Rizzo has played a handful of festivals, including South Lake Tahoe's own Bass Camp Festival and Burning Man stages like Opulent Temple. He has been the resident DJ at Hard Rock Hotel and Casino since the start of 2016. Ladies get in free until midnight, so be sure to grab your friends to get the most of this night out! Tickets cost $10 for gentlemen and anyone who wishes to attend after midnight. They are available in advance at http://www.hardrockcasinolaketahoe.com. Guests must be at least 21 years of age in order to attend the event. Ignite Winter White takes place in the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino's Graceland Ballroom. Hard Rock Hotel and Casino is located at 50 U.S. 50 in Stateline, Nevada. The venue's next scheduled bash is on Dec. 31, when Glam Cobra will headline an '80s-themed New Year's Eve extravaganza. Additional information about Hard Rock Hotel and Casino events is available at http://www.hardrockcasinolaketahoe.com. — Lake Tahoe Action