Tampa airport goes Gaga (and Prince and Miley and U2) for terminal's new Hard Rock Cafe
Peel your eyes at Tampa International Airport, and you might just see the Rolling Stones boarding a private plane. You might see Debbie Harry lounging in a terminal. You might see Jimi Hendrix and his band striding across the tarmac.
You can spot them all, and many more, when the airport's new Hard Rock Cafe opens to the public on Saturday, its walls festooned with more than 30 rock and pop artifacts. Many document the air-faring adventures of traveling rock stars.
For the Orlando-based chain, this Hard Rock Cafe is unique among its 160-plus siblings around the world. It's the first Hard Rock Cafe inside a North American airport, and the second in Tampa, a rarity in any city. At just under 5,100 square feet inside (an outdoor patio is still in the works), it's smaller than most Hard Rock Cafes — but what it lacks in display space, it makes up for with distinct frequent-flyer flavor.
"Every single Hard Rock is individually a music museum, and something really special that you're not going to see in other restaurants or hotels or casinos," said Jeff Nolan, the Hard Rock's music and memorabilia historian — or, as he puts it, "designated music nerd." "Clearly there is a traveling musician theme here that we try to maintain throughout."
For a full tour of the new Hard Rock Cafe at Tampa International Airport, click here.