The Hard Rock Cafe franchise celebrated its 44th birthday this year. Established in 1971 in London, the chain has 200 Hard Rock locations in 64 countries, one of them being Indonesia.
Hard Rock Cafe Bali is located opposite world-famous Kuta Beach, in Bali's prime tourist hotspot. Visitors can often be seen posing for a photo next to the iconic "giant guitar" outside the cafe, and this time there's a little something different about the towering musical instrument.
In celebration of Hard Rock Bali's 22nd anniversary, the usual electric guitar which had stood outside the venue for the past 11 years was replaced with a replica double neck guitar of popular Balinese guitarist, Balawan.
This is the first time a local artist's guitar (or replica thereof) has been displayed outside Hard Rock Cafe Bali.
I Wayan Balawan (fondly known simply as Balawan) is regarded as one of the fastest guitarists in Indonesia, and is famous for his ability to play double neck guitar. He was also the first guitarist in Asia to develop the eight-finger technique on double neck guitar.
During a press conference held on 24 June 2015, Balawan explained that Hard Rock Cafe Bali's new "giant guitar" features important Balinese characteristics. The curve of the double neck resembles the entrance to Hindu temples, while the body of the guitar is decorated in a "check" motif, a design that is commonly seen throughout Bali (usually in black and white).
Balawan's original double neck guitar that the "giant guitar" outside was based on can now be seen on display inside Hard Rock Cafe Bali, along with other memorabilia from the world's most famous musicians. The signed guitar will also be taken around the world to various Hard Rock Cafes.
The guitar was created by Tommy Kaihatu and made in Sidoarjo, East Java, by Rick Hanes Guitars.
General Manager of Hard Rock Cafe Bali, Rudy Tjung, was on hand to help celebrate the very special occasion.
The plaque below the new guitar reads "With this special guitar, I represent Bali and travel the world".
You can also easily walk to Hard Rock Cafe Bali from Beachwalk, which is a Kura-Kura Bus stop on both the Kuta Line and the Seminyak Line.
The fare for the Kuta Line and Seminyak Line is Rp. 20,000 for a single trip, and you can use a Kura-Kura Coin (available on the bus), Value Card or Day Pass (available from all Ticket Booths).