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UNLV Libraries -> Architecture Studies Library -> Las Vegas Guides and Collections ->
AIA Nevada Design & Service Awards Archive -> 2009 awards -> Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, Biloxi


Entry number: B09038
Project Name: Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, Biloxi
Building Type: Hotel/Casino
Completion Date: July 2007
Building Location: 777 Beach Blvd., Biloxi, Mississippi
Type of Construction: II- Fire Resistive
Materials Used: Precast concrete piles, structural steel framing, metal decking, steel reinforced concrete columns, post tensioned concrete slabs, custom framed and butt glazing, cold formed framing, EIFS
Building Area: 600,000 sf

Design Team:
Architecture Firm: Steelman Partners
Architect of Record: Ethan Nelson
Premier Entertainment
Interior Designer: Steelman Partners
Landscape Architect: Site Works, Inc.
Structural Engineer: Reigstad & Associate
Electrical Engineer: OMB Electrical Engineers
Mechanical Engineer: Finnegan Erickson Associates
Civil Engineer: Wink, Incorporated
General Contractor: Roy Anderson Corp.
Photographer: Steelman Partners

Statement of Design Approach:
The Hard Rock Biloxi Hotel and Casino Resort is a 600,00 square foot destination resort development that is located direct on the beach of the gulf coast in Biloxi, Mississippi. The design team worked to create a contemporary and modern design that similar to South Beach Florida resorts. The design provides a canvas that acts like chameleon and can change over time as does the music style each generation. The lighting was a very important design element and it captures the kinetic energy that is hard rock. This energy can be seen when the guest first arrives at the main entry lobby and you are greeted by the two story memorabilia wall display that pays tribute to rock ‘n roll’s greatest influences and continues down the promenade to the main casino during the evening. This energy can be seen when the guest first arrives at the main porte cochere as the exterior walls are awash with ever changing colors of light. He project is in a high wind hurricane zone and the glazing systems are a custom design to withstand these high winds velocities. The glazing systems performed extremely well during hurricane Katrina in 2005 just before the original grand opening. The access from the back of the house support facilities to the public areas are extremely important for the operations department in this type of facility and the design was to minimize travel distance for the employees.


This casino was designed for the young and the young-at-heart. The main podium includes a 50,000 square foot gaming area, 5 restaurants, a retail promenade, and a 1,200 seat theater with 3 separate VIP seating locations and a VIP lounge area that overlooks the main casino below. The 12 story hotel includes a total of 292 guestrooms and 24 suites (total of 318 rooms), a full service spa, a nightclub on the top floor (12th) of the hotel that has a 180 degree panoramic view of the beach and the unique zero entry beach pool. The beautiful gulf coast location makes for a breathtaking setting and the modern youthful design appeals to people of all ages. Unfortunately, 3 days before the grand opening of this project hurricane Katrina struck the area demolishing the casino and parts of the resort. After sustaining substantial damage to the casino and the lower floors, the casino was originally built on a 85,000 square foot floating barge but was reconstructed as a permanent steel framed structure on concrete pilings. The resort opened on July 7, 2007.

Sustainable Description:
The owner's intent is meet the "2030 Challenge" for fossil-fuel reductions and carbon neutrality.

Based on the "10 Principles for Livable Communities", the facility is a resort (7) that is actually a mixed-use development (3) in that it consists of a hotel, casino, restaurants, retail shops, a live theater, and a pool area that are all provides choices (2) to the guest. The pool area provides an open public space for public events (6). A requirement for building on the Gulf Coast Beach is that you cannot create more shade over the existing water's edge so that there is no disturbance to the existing habitat (8). Several existing large oak trees were preserved in their existing location along Beach Boulevard (9).

The Hard Rock Biloxi incorporates enery-saving LED tecnology for the dynamic RGB exterior building lighting as well as the landscape lighting for both the pool and the main garage facade. The interior lighting is primarily low-voltage halogen sources with neon and LED used extensively in ceiling coves and flourescent troffers in the back-of-house and in public restroom coves.



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Material in ASL Library: Form Core Boards, Project Description Form, Exteriors Photos, Location Map, Site Plan, Floor Plan, and Interior Photos

These images are low-resolution reproductions of the images provided for the AIA Nevada Design Awards. All materials should be considered copyrighted and may not be reproduced or used without permission.

Monday, 17-Dec-2012 10:50:06 PST