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Hard Rock guitar has bright future with latest renovation

“That sign has stood and we think it represents the resilience of the community and the citizens here that we can overcome tragedies and things that come along,” Raziano said.
Published: Jun. 29, 2021 at 2:44 PM CDT
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BILOXI, Miss. (WLOX) - A picturesque piece of the downtown Biloxi skyline has gotten a facelift. The Hard Rock Hotel and Casino is now showing off its newly renovated, oversized musical instrument.

The guitar has actually been a part of Biloxi since before the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino officially opened to the public in 2007. You may remember the resort was just days away from opening in 2005 when Hurricane Katrina devastated the waterfront property. The guitar managed to withstand all that monster storm had to offer, but it was Hurricane Zeta that dealt the iconic structure its worst blow. So casino brass made the decision to take the guitar out of commission so that they could bring it back better than ever.

“It got damaged pretty good,” said Hard Rock General Manager Todd Raziano. “So, we took the opportunity to refurbish it. It was long overdue. With that refurbishment, we changed out all of the neon, about 6000 feet of neon into LED lighting.”

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Posted by Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Biloxi on Monday, May 31, 2021

That change opens up another lighting opportunity for the 120-foot sign.

“This coming week, July 4th holiday, we’ve got it clad in red, white, and blue. We can do Christmas colors, red and green, Mardi Gras. In October for breast cancer awareness, we’ll see it turn all pink,” he said.

Aside from the obvious, Raziano said that the property’s iconic guitar is more than just a really flashy welcome sign.

“We’ve gotten beaten and battered by several storms along the way, oil spills, everything else. That sign has stood and we think it represents the resilience of the community and the citizens here that we can overcome tragedies and things that come along,” he said.

The repairs took nearly three months to complete, and Raziano is grateful for the work put in to bring the guitar back to life.

“We contracted with YESCO, a large national sign company. They hand-painted the faux tigerwood on the face of the guitar. They did a remarkable job from sun up to sundown on the guitar. Aside from the look of the guitar, it draws a lot less energy with LED as opposed to the neon. That is good for the environment and we’re really excited about that,” he said.

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