Wednesday, May 1, 2019

What a Smash of a Grand Opening at HARD ROCK CAFE MANILA!

My first thought was "omg sayang the guitars" haha.

But it was a tradition apparently of  Hard Rock Cafes all over the globe to open its restaurants with not just one but in this case several guitars in one go.

Arnel Pineda ( in white)  the famous singer from Journey led the pack of  crazy guitar smashing gentlemen which included  Hard Rock International's  (HRI) Annibal Fernandez,  Steve Yang  Vice President of Franchise Operations,  William Stelton ( The Bistro Group's Chairman and CEO) Jean Paul Manuud (President and COO)  and Brian Beck General Manager

It was quite a smashing  spectacle truth be told (pun intended).

Amazing to see Arnel Pineda on the stage for the  first time.

Yes Hard Rock Cafe just had its Grand Opening Party with the famous vocalist of Journey  returning to what he sentimentally calls his "home"...

Did you know?

To be playing at HARD ROCK CAFE MANILA again brings back a lot of memories and for me, it feels like a second homecoming...

I am excited! This is one of the few places where I can be myself and lose myself in my  music- and people love me for it. Its like a happy full circle for me..

- Arnel Pineda

  • 1982 saw Pineda becoming a lead singer of his very first band Ijos at 15 years old!
  • At 19,  they formed another band called Amo  , a band which won Rock Wars and band competitions
  • New Age, a new band formed when Amo disbanded. They played at Grammy's in HK
  • Pineda's star was clearly on the rise when an  illness sidelined his trajectory
  • Six months later  he was back in the saddle with his own self-titled solo album singing slow ballads and upbeat Latin music , some of which were composed by Pineda himself.
  • 9mm  , a new band was formed. Pineda and his band started performing at Hard Rock Cafe in Makati.
  • Zoo,  another band he formed with videos youtube showing Pineda doing impressive covers of Journey, Survivor, Aerosmith, Air Supply, Eagles, etc catching the eye of Journey's Neal Schon.
  • Journey's New Lead Singer-  On December 5, 2007, Pineda was officially  announced as  Journey's new lead singer


The starters kept landing on our table and I was hard put to keep up to keep track. At any rate, I was able to take pics  after the first few failed  times  I belatedly realized I forgot to feed the camera first haha

I loved the jalapeno balls (top left). It had a bit of a kick in it. It was crunchy outside and flavorful inside. It was just the right size for one mouthful. Paired well with the Long Island which I thought was non-alcoholic. Me thinks someone sneaked a few drops of alcohol in it. It was pretty strong for an iced tea haha. Oh well it was a party after all.

The slider was amazing. I loved the fried onion ring with the beef patty which was delicious and juicy. The nachos were beautifully smothered in cheese , bell pepper etc. Eat fast so it does not go soggy. The ribs were melt-in-your-mouth wonderful and paired deliciously with the beer

About Hard Rock Cafe and The Bistro Group...
  • 1971 , the year Hard Rock cafe was founded at a Rolls Royce dealership in London by  Isaac Tigrett and Peter Morton (Americans)
  • Hard Rock owns the world's most valuable collection of music memorabilia . Eric Clapton's guitar for example
  • Hard Rock Cafe  has venues in 74 countries including 185 cafes, 27 hotels and 12 casinos (
  • Hard Rock Inernational (HRI) owns and operates francises Cafes in London, New York, San Francisco, Sydney and Dubai
  • Hard Rock Cafe was brought to our shores by  The Bistro Group
  • The Bistro Group  is known for its roster of  notable brands such as Fridays, Italianni's , Bulgogi Brothers, The Helm, Savage, Baker & Cook and most recently RED LOBSTER,  to name a few.  Visit their website for more details

Thank you Ms. Raquel for the invite and for Hard Rock Cafe for having us 


That GUITAR SMASHING really started the ball rolling . Energy was really high. That performance of Arnel Pineda elevated the energy to the max. Ice Bucket's performance was  nothing to sneeze at either. The band was the perfect front act  to Pineda,  priming the audience for the finale.

Food were scrumptious. Apart from the starters, there was a buffet table on the side and an open bar.

What a  way to hold the Grand Opening of Hard Rock Cafe Manila. It was a smash hit!

Congratulations Hard Rock Cafe Manila and The Bistro Group!

HARD ROCK CAFE MANILA is located at the second level of S Maison  Conrad Manila, Mall of Asia Complex Pasay City

Hard Rock Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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