The Honest Review, Hard Rock Hotel Penang, Celebrating Their 10th Anniversary!

We were invited by Hard Rock Hotel Penang to review their establishments, at the same time join them in celebrating their 10 year anniversary and the grand re-opening of...

We were invited by Hard Rock Hotel Penang to review their establishments, at the same time join them in celebrating their 10 year anniversary and the grand re-opening of Hard Rock Cafe Penang which has recently undergone major refurbishments and as you will see throughout this article, it now looks outstanding!  Hard Rock Hotel Penang was the first Hard Rock Hotel in Malaysia and to celebrate the success of its decade long operation, Hard Rock Hotel Penang are inviting guests to take advantage of their  “We’re 10 For The Record!” room offer.  Hence the shiny white Proton X70 parked at the entrance of the hotel!  You can find more information on their official website and on their recent press release.

I am sure most of you have heard of the “Hard Rock” brand, even if its only because you might have seen the countless number of people wearing their branded T-shirts, and maybe even a key ring or two!  Originally established in 1971 with the opening of its first hotel in UK, London.  Since then, they have grown into a multi-billion dollar operation with many Hard Rock Cafes and Hard Rock Hotels all over the world.  They are very proud of their history and heritage as can be seen by their very unique “rock” theme.  Visitors are reminded of this everywhere they look as almost every piece of decor and furniture lends itself to this special theme.

Hallway connecting The Open Plan/Open Air Lobby Area to Starz Diner

Hard Rock Hotel Penang is definitely a “one-stop” and “non-stop” resort with something to do for everyone, of any age group, at every turn.  Our 3 day, 2 night stay was not nearly long enough to discover and enjoy all there is to do and see here!  So much to do in fact that you will probably forget to venture out of the grounds of the hotel to see Batu Ferringhi and Penang itself!  Batu Ferringhi is a beautiful coastal area in Penang, Northern Malaysia which hosts many visitors all year round, very famous for its local food and popular with foreigners and locals alike.

Open Air Reception And Lobby Lounge Area

Hard Rock Hotel Penang also have a very easy to navigate website, packed with information about the hotel’s amenities, dining and accommodation.  Making bookings on line either for dining or accommodation is super easy!  Throughout this article we will provide links (in bold blue text) for your convenience to relevant sections of their site and to some YouTube videos that we shot during our stay.  So let’s get on with it and tell you all!


We arrived about 11.30am after a 4 hour drive from Kuala Lumpur where we were greeted at the entrance by smiling, courteous staff from the concierge who offered to store our bags and take them to the room whilst we checked in.  In the Lobby Lounge area there is also a live band every Friday, Saturday and Sunday evening!


Then to the 5th floor to our Seaview Deluxe room, and no bags to carry!  The room was lovely, bright and clean (Video Room Interior)and of course all the decor was the usual “Hard Rock” theme! The sea view was to die for, very welcoming to see after our long drive(Video Balcony Views).  They have lots of different types of rooms which you can take a look at here.  Definitely worth a mention is their Lagoon Deluxe type room which allows you to dive right into the largest free-form swimming pool in Northern Malaysia!  We were quite envious of those rooms when we stumbled across their terraces whilst we were in the pool later that day!

Inside the room there is a handy smartphone and other gadgets and features for use during your stay.  A large 55 inch TV very aptly designed to fit the theme of the room.  It had a wide selection of movies for streaming, excellent for falling asleep in front of!  However, it’s not only for watching movies, you can see below photo the many services available listed down the left hand side piano keyboard.


Outdoors – Pool And Recreation Area

Firstly, we went for a bite to eat in the Pizzeria.  I had the Cuattro Stagioni(4 Seasons) 12 inch Pizza and Mediterranean Salad, super thin crispy base! Just how I like my Pizzas!  There is a wide selection of food on the menu including Pastas and Burgers.  My son had Wild Mushroom Soup Ala Cappuccino and my wife had Aglio Olio from the Pasta Selections.  The food was great and the atmosphere and scenery of the surrounding area was even better.  A fresh sea breeze with the view of the pool on one side and sea views on the other, awesome!  You can see more of the surrounding area of the Pizzeria on this YouTube video

The Shack And Sandbar

Now time for a relaxing afternoon drink by the pool, or in the pool too at The Shack!  Or, if you fancy keeping dry and want to enjoy a drink then you could sit in the Sand Bar enjoy the sun, drink and watch the world go by!  We spent quite a few hours here in The Shack, after hiring an inflatable for our son, my wife and I had no choice but to hang around and have a few drinks whilst semi-submerged in the pool!  The friendly staff will bring you snacks and food that can be ordered from the Pizzeria just nearby.

The floor in the seating and walking areas are sand covered, both in and around the pool area, nice under foot.  Quite hot in bare feet though!  Here is another uncut YouTube video I shot while wandering around in the pool.

Rock Spa

This is the place to go for massages and aromatherapy, situated nearby The Shack and swimming pool(YouTube Video) and almost on the beach.  Booking in advance is required.  The beach Cabanas where the massages take place are also available for rent so you can lounge by the pool while you read a book or enjoy a cocktail or two!  Rock Spa has Yoga Sessions available every Saturday at 9am, kids can also join in.

Rock Royalty Level Lounge(VIP Lounge)

After the pool and massages the next stop was to check out the VIP lounge.  Here they have different timetables for Breakfast, Hi-Tea and Cocktails.  We went to catch the cocktails which runs from 6pm until 7.30pm.  At this time there is free flow cocktails, wine and beer, and of course, an excellent selection of canapes and bites.  Here you can relax on the sofa, watch TV or help yourself to the food on display in a quiet air conditioned environment.

Hard Rock Cafe Penang

This place is definitely “rockin'” and is not only visited by guests of the hotel but also by tourists and locals who have heard about Hard Rock Cafe and know what to expect when they find one!  As we know, the “Hard Rock” brand name really does travel far and wide.

Hard Rock Cafe Penang and Hard Rock Hotel Penang are situated right next to each other, in the same grounds.  Just a 20 metre walk, we walked across only for dinner this time, but we will be back for a second time tomorrow for the grand re-opening!  As you can see from our slideshow below it has undergone apparently much needed, major refurbishment.  We took some of the photos earlier, while it was empty so we can show you properly.

I got the chance to shoot a couple of videos while it was quiet, both of the upper level and ground level.

You can check the menus here, both the Food Menu and the Drinks Menu.

We ordered 3 dishes in total.  The Jumbo Combo which is a selection of signature wings, onion rings, Tupelo chicken tenders, Southwest spring rolls and tomato bruschetta served with honey mustard and blue cheese, quite big and great as a sharing starter.

Jumbo Combo

New York Strip Steak

Grilled Norwegian Salmon

I ordered the New York Strip Steak,  a 340g steak, grilled and topped with herb butter, served with golden mashed potatoes and fresh vegetables.  My son had Grilled Norwegian Salmon, a 227g grilled salmon with herb butter and house-made barbecue sauce also served with golden mashed potatoes and fresh vegetables.

The vegetables were slightly crispy, cooked to perfection and the mashed potato was very tasty and creamy texture with quite a unique flavour, one which I have not come across before.

We had a great evening and hung around for quite some time after the meal, taking in the atmosphere and brand new surroundings.  As you can see from the photos there is a lot of Hard Rock memorabilia all around!

Off to bed we went, mulling over what we are going to do tomorrow!


Memorabilia Tour

We skipped breakfast and went on the Memorabilia Tour, this was presented by Dan Noordzy, Master Rock Agent, who told me he manages the memorabilia and tours, available for groups of children as well.  You must book in advance, but it’s well worth doing if you can spare 20-30 minutes.  Dan told us all about the history of Hard Rock, while taking us around both the hotel and then onto Hard Rock Cafe showing us all the Memorabilia.

He told us that Hard Rock International is the world’s original curator of music memorabilia with the most far-reaching collection with an 81,000+ piece collection, and it’s the world’s greatest collection of music memorabilia.  Hard Rock memorabilia is showcased at Hard Rock Cafes, Hard Rock Live venues and Hard Rock Hotels and Casinos around the world. The photos in our slideshow is only a small selection both in Hard Rock Hotel and Hard Rock Cafe.

Starz Diner

We had snacks at the pool early in the afternoon and then onto to Starz Diner for dinner as soon as it opened at 5.30pm.  Starz Diner opens at 6.30am until 11am for breakfast and 5.30pm until 11pm for dinner.  We shot a video of the interior of Starz Diner, it had literally only just opened so luckily it was quite empty.  Starz Diner do have a very wide selection of food available including Asian, Western and Pastas as you can see from the menu here

We had Steamed Chicken Rice, Pan Fried Atlantic Salmon and of course for me, Rib Eye Steak, again! All the food was very well presented indeed and cooked to perfection with crunchy vegetables and very tender meats.

Steamed Chicken Rice

Pan Fried Atlantic Salmon

Rib Eye Steak










Hard Rock Cafe Penang Grand Re Opening And 10 Year Anniversary

Congratulations to Hard Rock Cafe Penang on their grand re-opening after completion of recent refurbishments!  Hard Rock Cafe was closed to the general public for this event until 10.30pm, after that, the doors opened to the general public too.  Distinguished guests, VIP guests and members of staff enjoyed and celebrated with free flow food and drink throughout the entire evening.  Many of those who were unable to attend sent their best wishes by courier instead!

Bouquet Of Flowers Received From Hard Rock Cafe Melaka, KL & KK

It was great to meet John Primmer, General Manager of Hard Rock Hotel Penang and the senior management of his sales and marketing team.  Thank you to John and his many teams for the organisation of this event and a big well done to all involved, it was ran and organised seamlessly!  By the way, Hard Rock Cafe Penang have entertainment and live bands every single evening, weekdays and weekends!

At the beginning of the evening there was various Hard Rock Café dishes on display from their menu, prepared by the chef so that guests can take a good look at the real thing and take photos if they so wished.

I would like to share with you a few uncut videos of the evening which really speak volumes and tells just a few of the evenings stories!

In Summary

The whole experience was excellent!  Very friendly and courteous staff who helped us a lot during our stay.  For dining, we were spoilt for choice with so many eateries to choose from and not only that, but excellent food in all of them.  Our stay was not long enough as there are so many exciting things to see and do here, which I am sure is apparent from the content of this article!  My only regret was that we didn’t have time to venture out into Penang itself.  We would strongly recommend you pay this place a visit and experience it for yourself, one thing’s for sure, you won’t regret it.  We will definitely be going back.  Thank you so much, Hard Rock Cafe Penang!