Portfolio: Hard Rock Cafe Key West

Hard Rock Cafe Foto By Freas 14

By Pat McBride, CEO

After 37 years in the business, we’ve got a lot of stories to tell. We want to share our past work on the blog and give you some insight on what makes our projects unique and memorable.

The Hard Rock Cafe Key West is a good place to start.

Our first project with Hard Rock was a design competition to renovate one of the first locations in New York City. We won the competition, however the renovation never moved forward. Later, when Hard Rock had an opportunity to open a Key West location, they called us. Part of what they wanted The McBride Company to figure out was how to make the brand’s moody, rock ’n’ roll, urban vibe relevant in sunny, tropical Key West.

Our concept for a new type of Hard Rock – a Hard Rock in the tropics – was rooted in the fact that many Key West visitors come for the day on a boat from Miami. When people make that trip, they’re hoping for a real Key West experience – they want an escape. We realized that if we could give the guest the  more urban Hard Rock Cafe experience wrapped up in a smaller, sleepy Key West environment, the client would be successful.

To capture the local vibe meant housing the Hard Rock Cafe Key West in an existing, historic Victorian house and maintaining the building’s original interior trim and architectural characteristics. By layering the Hard Rock history, music memorabilia and rock ‘n’ roll attitude on top of that, we created something totally unique. The integration of unique local features is something that a lot of multi-location destination restaurants don’t do enough of. Instead of producing a carbon copy of the urban Hard Rock Cafes, we took local cues to create a new look and feel for the brand.

Located on the world famous Duval Street in the middle of the Old Town section of Key West, it has remained a highly successful location.