We live in the Orlando area and have seasonal passes, but still thought it would be fun to spend a couple nights at the Hard Rock Hotel. I made reservations for a garden view room at the entertainment rate for June 6th and 7th. We arrived a little after 2:00pm on the 6th and were given a garden view room on the 4th floor. We got to the room and found that the room had obviously not yet been cleaned...the beds were unmade and dirty (some filthy) towels were everywhere. I went back to reception and let them know that my first impression of the hotel wasn't very good at this point. They were understanding and gave me a free upgrade to a pool view room on the 6th floor. Thankfully this room was clean and very nice! Changed and went to the pool which was great! The kids (age 7 and 4) really loved the water slide! There is a sign by the slide saying kids under 48" can't use it, but if they wear a life vest (which they provide) they will let them go on it. Unfortunately we only got about 30 minutes in before they cleared the pool due to lightning. Oh well...back to the room to change and then off to diner at the Palm. The Palm was very nice and the service was great, but it was also very expensive...about $30 for a steak and that's only for the meat! Salad, vegetables and potatos will cost you more! We decided to keep it reasonable and got the Chicken Martini ($16.50) and Pork Chops ($20) which came with free applesauce (generous of them, isn't it!) and also sprung for a baked potato ($3.50) and Caeser Salad ($6.50). They do NOT have a kids menu but let the kids split a chicken dinner ($15) and even prepared it the way they liked it (like chicken fingers). After dinner we went back to our room and then back to the pool were we stayed until it closed at 10:00pm. Thursday morning we went for breakfast at the Sunset Grill and it was the second disappointment on this trip. After taking our order we waited for well over 30 minutes and didn't receive our order. We got up to leave and were waiting in line to buy some pastries when they said our food would be out shortly and that breakfast would be on them. That was fine...can't turn down a free breakfast and at least when things go wrong here they do their best to make the situation right again. After breakfast we walked over to PBH and tried out their pool for a couple hours. It was very nice. A little deeper than the pool at HRH and had a few nice 'waterfalls' as well as a decent slide, but we liked the pool and slide much better at HRH. We returned to the HRH and checked out the lobby and gift shop for a little while. My kids know I like Kiss so they had fun posing in front of the giant Gene Simmons portrait (complete with axe bass in display) in the gift shop. If anyone else cares, there were varous other 'Kiss' displays around the hotel including a Paul Stanley costume and guitar outside the gift shop, an Eric Carr costume in the Velvet Bar and two big pictures behind the breakfast layout on the club level (7th floor). Seems that they were only second to Elvis and Elton John. Time to check out a park so we decide to go to USF since we hadn't been there in months (we seem to go to IOA every couple weeks). The path behind the slide is the quickest path to USF...probably only a 2 minute walk. USF was fun, but nothing really new. Finally saw Animal Planet Live which really isn't that different at all from the original Animal Actors show. Had lunch at Finnigan's which was good and then hit all our favorite attractions. FOTL is really nice. Kids had their picture taken with Shrek (who really played the character well...right down to the accent) and ran into Sponge Bob! After Universal we went back to the hotel and then back in the pool for about an hour before dinner. Walked over to PBH again to have dinner at Trattoria del Porto which is probably the most kid friendly restaurant at PBH or HRH and you get a $16 discount with the Entertainment Card! Dinner was good and reasonably priced and they had a magician going from table to table entertaining (I think they have Universal characters on Mondays and Friday). Towards the back (where we usually sit) they have a nice area for the kids with a big screen TV. After dinner it was raining so no pool. Friday morning I just ran down to the Sunset Grill and picked up some donuts and pastries to take back to the room for breakfast. After that the kids wanted to swim so we spent a couple hours down in the pool and then had to check out and then off to IOA. We've been to IOA at least 50 times, but it was nice having FOTL access this time and we did just about all of the rides, including some which we usually skip like One Fish Two Fish. Had lunch at Confisco's which is probably our favorite place to eat at IOA. Back at HRH they told us that we could still use the pool the whole day after we checked out and even let us use the fitness center for changing. (btw: a little known 'secret'...you can find the best prices on soft drinks at the fitness center). All in all everyone had a great time and other than the two minor incidents (unmade room and slow service at Sunset Grill) we were very impressed and pleased with the hotel. The pool was a BIG hit with everyone as was the FOTL access.