TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – It’s gold, it’sgrand and once was played by the “King of Rock and Roll.” As of recently, thispiece of music history has a new home in Tampa.
Thursday the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel& Casino unveiled Elvis Presley’s iconic 24-karat gold leaf grand piano.This treasure is a part of the hotel’s ongoing $700 million expansion project.
“The piano itself is part of thearchitecture we designed into this new atrium with the new escalators, literallyamazing architectural attraction here in Tampa,” said Jim Allen, the chairmanof Hard Rock International and CEO of Seminole Gaming.
The grand piano was originally displayedinside of Presley’s music room at his Graceland home in Memphis.
Guitarist James Burton, who playedguitar with Presley and has seen the piano in his home, says its permanentplace at the Hard Rock is fitting.
“You know what, Elvis would be proud.It’s in a beautiful place and it’s secure and it’s in a great home and we havea place that will love it and enjoy it,” said Burton.
The instrument was originally purchasedfor Presley’s mother’s in 1955 but was placed into storage after her death in1958. The gold finish, however, didn’t come into play until Priscilla Presleydecided to have the piano adorned in 24-karat gold-leaf. She then presented itto “The King” as a Christmas and anniversary gift.
Now, Elvis’ grand piano will be amongsome of the most significant music memorabilia in the nation.
“This piano was sold for over $2 milliondollars and has been featured in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, movies and TVshows, so it is truly a legendary piece,” said Allen.