Judge approves sale of Hard Rock Park for $25 million

Posted Tuesday, February 17, 2009 9:23 PM | Contributed by T Van

A judge has approved the sale of Hard Rock Park to FPI MB Entertainment for $25 million. The sale is scheduled to close no later than 5 p.m. Thursday, but could happen as early as Wednesday. Delaware bankruptcy court Judge Kevin Carey called the price adequate and the process rigorous. "Anyone who wanted the opportunity to bid had it," he said. FPI wants to keep the Hard Rock brand but has agreed to destroy any Hard Rock-branded merchandise before the park opens if there is no agreement on extending the license agreement, lawyers for the companies said in court.

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Tuesday, February 17, 2009 9:36 PM

I don't know if I'd want to keep the Hard Rock name after all the bad press the park has got lately.

timmyk

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Tuesday, February 17, 2009 9:52 PM
Olsor's avatar

I'm not sure the bad press has counteracted the utter lack of press the park got in the first place. If a park fails in Myrtle Beach and no one knows it's there... does it make a sound?

That's a heck of a deal on that park, though. It makes Six Flags' fire sale of Geauga look ruthless by comparison. Is it safe to say that Led Zeppelin constitutes half the park's worth at this point?

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Tuesday, February 17, 2009 10:05 PM
kpjb's avatar

Yeah, since the biggest problem was marketing and so few people know the place is even there, it seems that this would be a prime candidate for a "do-over."

I think they could treat 08 as a preview season, keep the branding, and have another go at it with a change in marketing and attitude.


Hi

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Tuesday, February 17, 2009 10:41 PM
Jeff's avatar

The bad press only extends as far as Myrtle Beach. Who outside of there (aside from us) cares or knew of the park in the first place?

I just hope that Hard Rock doesn't just dismiss it entirely. They should listen to the plans of the new owners. I still think it'd be a valuable brand extension if it's actually marketed.


Jeff - Webmaster/Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Twitter - Video

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Wednesday, February 18, 2009 10:03 AM

I agree with Jeff, you don't cut off your nose just to spite your face. They should hang in there with the stipulation that there is more substantial advertising. If they would advertise this like Universal did with Islands of Adventure then maybe it would make it. No matter what the do it is going to take a while for the park to grow. It has been mentioned in other threads that the park need to put in more rides, and I agree that they need more flat rides as well as some kiddie rides for the younger rockers out there. No matter what happens I hope they can get the ball going in the right direction. This could be the beginning of a major change to the landscape of Myrtle Beach. Think a smaller version of Orlando.


There is no better sound than that of a wooden rollercoaster climbing the first hill

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Wednesday, February 18, 2009 10:18 AM
PSlate's avatar

I may be showing my ignorance on these matters here, but I just want to try and get some clarification. If the Hard Rock branding does go, does that mean all the ride names do to, or just all the Hard Rock logos??

I can see that they would be able to keep a license deal seperately with the bands themselves to keep ride theming if they'd want , just not sure of the legalities of it all..

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Wednesday, February 18, 2009 10:23 AM

I think the sale, and the fact that they want to keep the licensing is a good thing. Can't wait to see if they reach an agreement with Hard Rock.

I am sure they could hit the numbers they need to keep it open as long as they market it properly.

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Wednesday, February 18, 2009 10:36 AM
LostKause's avatar

Don't forget about some water rides, which I feel may be very important for the park to feel like a real park.

Why did they build so many small coasters and leave out the staples of an amusement park? Where's the flume, the Rapids ride, Ferris Wheel and the train? Does the park even have a carousel? What about something of an observation tower, or a space needle? I know that not every park has every kind of ride that I list here, but most of them have some of them.

It just didn't seem like a real amusement park to me.

I like the idea of free admission for this park. That'll get more people in the gate, I just hope they spend enough money while there.


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Wednesday, February 18, 2009 11:10 AM

I think they have a hieght limit so observation towers of any real hieght are out. I think I read somewhere that Led Zepplin is at the limit,

They could put in a flume or rapids ride themed to Styx, the band and the mythology. Styx, Come sail away.

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Wednesday, February 18, 2009 11:50 AM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

LostKause said:
It just didn't seem like a real amusement park to me.

If there's one thing I've been saying for months now, it's that if you went there expecting a theme park experience you were going to be disappointed. Too many people expected a theme park experience instead of a Hard Rock™ themed multi-use area experience.

It wasn't about the rides and quite frankly, I'm not sure I'd have enjoyed it as much if it was.

Last edited by Lord Gonchar, Wednesday, February 18, 2009 12:42 PM
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Wednesday, February 18, 2009 2:06 PM
eightdotthree's avatar

Lord Gonchar said:
Too many people expected a theme park experience instead of a Hard Rock™ themed multi-use area experience.

Maybe that's the problem. I personally don't care about a "Hard Rock™ themed multi-use area experience." I live 1.5 hours from the Rock N' Roll Hall of Fame and have never been. I just don't care.


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Wednesday, February 18, 2009 2:30 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

Then you weren't necessarily their audience, were you?

As a theme park/amusement park fan (and not a Hard Rock™ fan) you'd probably have been disappointed because it wasn't much of a amusement park in terms of rides and the theme wasn't one you're interested in.

I'm not sure creating a product that doesn't suit you is the problem. ;)

Last edited by Lord Gonchar, Wednesday, February 18, 2009 2:30 PM
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Wednesday, February 18, 2009 2:59 PM
rollergator's avatar

Can't help but think now about the concept of a "themed multi-use area experience." Right now, I'm pondering the fates of HRP, Meadowlands Xanadu, Granite Park in Fresno, and Thor's "Coney Dystopia"....all geared around this concept. The one that kinda fits the bill and is succeeding - The Park at MoA. Just thought the fire needed some more accelerant... :)

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Wednesday, February 18, 2009 3:15 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

I think that puts it into perspective a little better, Gator. Still not quite totally worthy of that group either.

HRP seemed to sit in the grey area between theme/amusement parks and places like the ones you mention. It was set up as more 'theme park' but lacked rides. It had shopping, shows and attractions but wasn't set up like a true multi-use area.

Kind of the worst of both worlds now that I reason through it. :)


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Wednesday, February 18, 2009 4:27 PM

The park last year had over 10 million dollars in liscensing fees according the the bankruptcy papers, if the 2.5 million to Hard Rock international are the only fees kept I think that would acceptable. Also consider that there is around 4 million dollars in Hard Rock Park merchandise sitting around the park, it would make sense for at least one year to keep the name. The park did not make 10 million at the gate last year so having that much in fees for names is insane.

Last edited by OhioCoasterFan9, Wednesday, February 18, 2009 4:28 PM
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Wednesday, February 18, 2009 4:35 PM

You know, I wonder if Sea World isn't the closest comparison point. Sea World isn't anything like a traditional amusement park. It's got a handful of rides, a couple nice exhibits, and some great shows---and the shows are the backbone of the parks.

If you're there for just the rides, you'll have a very short day. If you're there for the experience, it really works well.

Disney's Animal Kingdom is anoter park that's a bit short on rides, but still interesting.

Last edited by Brian Noble, Wednesday, February 18, 2009 4:35 PM
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Wednesday, February 18, 2009 4:59 PM
rollergator's avatar

^I like those comparisons in a way, since they involve the heavy reliance on shows, exhibits, food, shopping, and other kinds of entertainment. But then I consider that DAK and the Sea World parks all rely to a great degree on animals. I see that as different since animals require pretty much 24/7/365 care...and generate expenses on the same order - note that those parks are in operation year-round. Would be interesting to compare/contrast with Opryland (if I'd ever been there, or HRP). ;)

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Wednesday, February 18, 2009 5:54 PM
Lord Gonchar's avatar

Gator has a point about animals. Those parks are very zoo-like with everything else being extras. Like a zoo-to-the-next-level type of thing.

HRP would be like a DAK or SW without the animals but with more guitar. :)


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Wednesday, February 18, 2009 6:55 PM
sws's avatar

Lord Gonchar said:
HRP would be like a DAK or SW without the animals but with more guitar. :)

Then maybe what they really need is more cow bell. :)

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