The Hard Rock Café reopened last night after the completion of renovations begun during the winter. Expect a similar layout, but with framed back-lit guitars and other paraphernalia, though the ceiling painting of music stars standing on the Great Wall remains. The place first opened in Beijing in 1994 with blues legend BB King.
The opening party featured a spread of ribs, sausages, pastas, and other food, plenty of beer and Champagne, and performances that included a drumming session. Three singers did rock and pop songs while accompanied by six dancers whose outfits ranged from military chic (though camouflage tank tops don’t provide much cover) for a Shakira song to black wraps over what looked like futuristic rhinestone-studded bathing suits for “It’s Raining Men.” I had hoped for AC/DC, but settled for “Come on Aileen” by Dexy’s Midnight Runners, not a song you often hear live in Beijing, though the sound mixing did not do the singers justice.
My second visit left a much better impression than my first and I plan to return to try the Hard Rock’s burger (about which I’ve heard people rave) and enjoy some more music.
Note: I left before Run DMC co-founder Darryl McDaniels made his appearance.