Las Vegas sportsbook review: The Hard Rock

May 22, 2012 |

A sleek, high-energy resort, the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino is located one mile east of the Las Vegas Strip at the intersection of Paradise Road and Harmon Avenue. With its upscale party atmosphere, the Hard Rock attracts a dynamic crowd that appreciates cutting-edge nightlife as well as gaming. The Hard Rock offers an outstanding selection of slots and table games, excellent restaurants and a top-notch pool scene, all amid rock-and-roll surroundings.

The Sportsbook

Sportsbook relevance: 10

The newly renovated book at the Hard Rock opened in its current form in late 2010, making it one of the most contemporary sportsbooks in Las Vegas. Its convenient location near the casino floor ensures the sportsbook stands as one of the primary hubs of excitement on the entire property. The book offers the best of both worlds for sports bettors. Lively crowds pack the room for big games, but the vibe is more relaxed during less busy times on the sports calendar. The book is operated by Cantor Gaming, which also runs sportsbooks at several other casinos.

Service: 9

The staff members at the Hard Rock sportsbook are cordial, professional and extremely well-versed in the particulars of the sports betting business. The resort’s cocktail servers, always attentive in the sportsbook and throughout the property, have earned a reputation as the most stylish and elegant in the hospitality industry. The customer service team at the Hard Rock can assist with your plans to hit up one of the resort’s world-famous nightclubs, concert venues like The Joint or dining destinations such as Nobu or 35 Steaks + Martinis.

Ambiance: 9

Featuring dazzling, eye-pleasing aesthetics and state-of-the-art technology, the Hard Rock sportsbook can be viewed as a template for the ideal sportsbook of the 21st century. A spectacular video wall, 10 feet tall by 83 feet wide, shows all the race and sports action along with electronically displayed odds. The video images range from 110 inches to 220 inches measured diagonally, depending on how they are configured. Dozens of smaller high-definition screens can be found in the book as well as in the adjacent bar. Seats are comfortable and still feel brand new. High-compression ceiling speakers, expertly mounted throughout the book, provide superb sound. A VIP lounge in the rear of the book features elevated seating and enhanced sightlines for well-heeled guests.

The clientele at the book is an intriguingly diverse group of bettors. Experienced, hardcore sports gamblers are drawn by the wide variety of betting options including proposition wagers as well as special features such as mobile betting tables. Curious tourists and younger sports bettors, attracted by the fun, hip atmosphere, also make up a healthy portion of the typical crowd.

The entire Hard Rock property has undergone extensive renovations in recent years, and the work is reflected in the pristine restrooms and facilities located just steps from the sportsbook.

Betting options: 9

The Hard Rock and other Cantor Gaming books are among the most innovative sportsbook operations in the industry. You will find “In-Running Wagering” that takes place throughout the game, offering an opportunity to bet on the point spread, money line, total and other propositions at odds that are continually adjusted. Cantor’s signature “trading station architecture” in the seating area lives up to its billing, allowing guest to make bets with the ease of pressing a button. In addition to betting lines on all major and minor sports, oddsmakers here show a flair for the creative. For example, the Hard Rock and other Cantor books take bets on every game of the first 16 weeks of the NFL season – four months before the season even starts.

If you want to make large bets on sports in Las Vegas, you can’t go wrong at the Hard Rock or any other book operated by Cantor Gaming. Officials with Cantor have repeatedly gone on the record stating that they welcome all action and cater to the biggest sports bettors in Las Vegas, accepting five-figure and even six-figure wagers on many sporting events.

The Property

Boys' weekend: 10

The Hard Rock is arguably your No. 1 choice in all of Las Vegas for a weekend with your homies. The pool scene, complete with oodles of attractive, bikini-clad women, is second to none. Promotions such as “Rehab Sundays,” “Relax Mondays” and “Summercamp Fridays” highlight a full menu of pool parties that feature drink specials and live entertainment from world-renowned deejays.

With a classic rock-and-roll theme, the Center Bar in the resort’s Casino Tower serves as the Hard Rock’s focal point for socializing and enjoying cocktails. It’s the perfect spot to kick off a night of partying. Body English, the resort’s iconic underground club, offers great live music along with several bars and seductive dance floors.

Mr. Lucky’s Café, open 24 hours a day, is the ideal eatery for refueling. It features tasty breakfast items as well as burgers, pizza, sandwiches and specialties.

Girlfriend/wife weekend: 7

The Hard Rock offers plenty of enticing features for a romantic couple’s getaway. On-site shopping options include Rocks jewelers, a John Varvatos boutique and Love Jones for lingerie and other intimate attire. The Reliquary Spa and Salon offers all standard spa services as well as its premier attraction, the luxurious co-ed Roman Bath, which is modeled on decadent bathhouses of old. Spa pricing is fairly standard. It’s not cheap, but you get a lot of bang for your buck.

The walk from the Hard Rock to the Strip is an uncomfortable, mile-long slog, so you’ll want to grab a cab to visit the upscale shopping destinations of the center Strip.

Many of the Hard Rock’s well-appointed hotel rooms and suites offer unparalleled views of the resort’s expansive pool areas or the lights of the Las Vegas Strip.

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