Hard Rock Cafe


Hard Rock Cafe

Infobox_Company
company_name = Hard Rock Cafe
company_
company_type = Private
foundation = June 14, 1971 in London, England (UK)
location = Orlando, Florida, USA
key_people = Isaac Tigrett and Peter Morton, Founders
Florida Seminole tribe, owners
industry = casual dining restaurants, casinos, hotels
homepage = [http://www.hardrock.com/ www.hardrock.com]

Hard Rock Cafe was founded in 1971 by Isaac Tigrett and Peter Morton, and their first Hard Rock Cafe opened near Hyde Park Corner in London, in a former Rolls Royce car dealerships showroom close to Hyde Park, where in 1979 they began to cover the walls with rock 'n' roll ephemera. The current owner is the Seminole Tribe in the United States.

There are more than 143 Hard Rock Cafes in over 36 countries at present, with several more in the works.

History

The cafe was reportedly named after side one of The Doors' 1970 album "Morrison Hotel", which was in turn named after a now-closed bar in downtown Los Angeles depicted on the back cover of "Morrison Hotel". The Hard Rock Cafe's motto "Love All, Serve All" was adopted from Tigrett's guru Sathya Sai Baba.

In recent times the business has come in for some criticism because of its practice of paying its waiting staff less than half the official minimum wage, with the business allocating tips to staff to bring their salaries within the law. Most customers, it was argued, do not realise that they are subsidizing an illegal wage when they give the tip [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/7513273.stm BBC NEWS | Business | Hard Rock wages 'below minimum' ] ] . The company argued it was doing nothing wrong saying it is "free to distribute the service charge as it sees fit".

Locations

Restaurants

List of Hard Rock Cafes

A second location, originally developed by an unaffiliated group and later purchased by Hard Rock International, opened in downtown Toronto in 1978. [ [http://www.hardrock.com/corporate/press/content.aspx?id=28 Hard Rock Cafe - Corporate - Press ] ] Toronto is now home to two cafes - which includes the one at the Rogers Centre (formerly known as the SkyDome) overlooking the stadium field. The chain began global expansion in 1982 when the two agreed to develop their own cafes across the world. Morton (Hard Rock America) opened Hard Rocks in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, and Houston while Tigrett (Hard Rock International) did so in New York City, Dallas, and Paris. The first Hard Rock Cafe in the United States, however, was a short-lived location in Tigrett's home town of Jackson, Tennessee. It was a small restaurant located in the Old Hickory Mall that functioned like any other Hard Rock Cafe with rock and roll memorabilia on the walls and Hard Rock Cafe T-shirts with the city of Jackson listed on the front.

Eventually Tigrett sold his interest to Robert Earl and Mecca Leisure, but Morton opened several more units including Las Vegas, Nevada; San Diego, La Jolla and Newport Beach, California; Sydney and Melbourne, Australia (now closed); Honolulu and Maui, Hawaii; and Israel (later closed) among many others. There are believed to be over 125 company owned and franchised outlets around the world. [http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/The_Leisure_Lounge/Hard_Rock_Cafe_A_cafe_and_a_rocking_place/articleshow/2623572.cms]

The biggest cafe of the Hard Rock Cafe business is located in Orlando, Florida, located just outside Universal Studios Theme Park. The Cafe is highly decorated with famous musicians instruments such as guitars donated by the likes of Johnny Cash, Joe Perry (Aerosmith), Deryck Wibley (Sum 41) and many more; there's even a room decorated with famous Elvis memorabilia.

Expansion into other businesses

Casinos and hotels

In 1995 Peter Morton opened the first "Hard Rock Hotel & Casino" off the Las Vegas strip and it was an overnight sensation. Under Peter Morton's hand, the "Hard Rock Hotel" in Las Vegas was so successful that a subsequent 1999 expansion was added that nearly doubled the hotel's capacity. Morton spent $80 million to build the hotel, which opened in early 1995, and $100 million to expand it in 1999.

In May 2006 Morton sold the Las Vegas "Hard Rock Hotel" to New York-based Morgans Hotel Group for $770 million, including the rights to the "Hard Rock Hotel" brand west of the Mississippi River, including Texas, California, Australia and Vancouver, British Columbia. Edward Scheetz, a Morgans' executive, described the 11-story, 650-room "Hard Rock Hotel" as a "trophy property" that will never be replicated in Las Vegas because of land values. The "Hard Rock" pool alone, named one of the top ten hotel pools by Travel Channel, occupies land valued at $50 million.

On September 1, 2007 the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Las Vegas announced the sponsorship of the 2004 Indianapolis 500 champion, Buddy Rice for the final two races of the 2007 IndyCar Series Season. HRH graced the sidepods of Rice's No.15 Honda-powered Dallara in the Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix inwhich he led the race for seven laps and looked likely to claim second place until he ran out of fuel knocking IndyCar Series points contenders Scott Dixon and Dario Franchitti, husband of actress Ashley Judd, out of the race; Rice would finish seventh.

In addition to Hard Rock's Las Vegas operation, Hard Rock International has also opened successful casinos in Manchester and London, England; Tampa and Hollywood, Florida; and Biloxi, Mississippi. The Seminole Indian tribe of Florida operates the Florida units. Hard Rock also has a very profitable online operation. Additionally, Hard Rock International and Sol Melia Hotels and Resorts, the largest resort hotel company in the world today, launched a joint-venture company (November 2004), Lifestar Hoteles Espana SL, to manage Europe's first Hard Rock Hotel in Madrid, which was to be the fourth Hard Rock Hotel part of the joint venture since its formation in 2003; however, due to disorganisation on the part of Hard Rock's Spanish partners, the Madrid hotel project has been shelved. The other joint venture hotels are in Chicago, New York and San Diego (the San Diego property includes Hard Rock condominiums). Hard Rock also operates hotels and resorts in Orlando, Florida (a joint venture with Loews Hotels); Bali, Indonesia; and Pattaya, Thailand (joint ventures with Ong Beng Seng/Hotel Properties Limited).Hard Rock International (Rank Organisation) continues to expand the Hard Rock Hotel brand internationally (hotels, casinos, resorts, and now condominiums) through several of the afore mentioned joint ventures (Becker Ventures, Ong Beng Seng/Hotel Properties Limited, Loews Hotels, and the Seminole Indian Nation) including:

*Hard Rock Hotel Chicago, Illinois
*Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, Hollywood, Florida
*Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, Tampa, Florida
*Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, Biloxi, Mississippi
*Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, Nevada
*Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, London, England
*Hard Rock Hotel Bali, Indonesia
*Hard Rock Hotel, Orlando, Florida
*Hard Rock Hotel, San Diego, California
*Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, Kansas City, Kansas "(Scheduled to open in 2011 at Kansas Speedway.)"

Hard Rock Park - Theme Park

Hard Rock Cafe International announced in March 2006 that they licensed the "Hard Rock" name to HRP Myrtle Beach Operations, LLC, to design, build, and own a $400 million convert|150|acre|km2|sing=on theme park called Hard Rock Park. It opened on April 15, 2008 in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

The park, billed as a totally immersive full-day attraction, appealing to visitors of all generations, was expected to draw an estimated 30,000 visitors per day and create more than 3,000 jobs, and was also the largest single investment in South Carolina history. The park features a large concert arena and six zones with more than 40 attractions. [ [http://www.hardrock.com/corporate/press/content.aspx?id=149 Hard Rock Park press release] ] .

HRP Myrtle Beach Operations, LLC, filed for Chapter 11 on September 25, 2008. The company says that the park will re-open in 2009 after restructuring. [ [http://www.ajc.com/travel/content/travel/southeast/sc_stories/2008/09/25/hard_rock_park_bankrupt.html Hard Rock Park in SC files Chapter 11 bankruptcy] ] .

eminole Tribe of Florida takeover

On December 7, 2006, Rank sold the Hard Rock business to the Seminole Tribe of Florida for US$965 million. Included in the deal are 124 Hard Rock Cafes, four Hard Rock Hotels, two Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Hotels, two Hard Rock Live! concert venues, and stakes in three unbranded hotels. Rank is keeping the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in London, but has changed its name to "G Casino Piccadilly". The Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas is also not part of the deal, as it was sold by Peter Morton to Morgans Hotel Group in May 2006. [ [http://www.foxnews.com/wires/2006Dec07/0,4670,HardRockCafeSeminoleTribe,00.html FoxNews article on Hard Rock sale to Seminoles] ] The final takeover was mired in controversy, as another of the chain's suitors, Power Plant Entertainment, charged that Merrill Lynch sabotaged its acquisition efforts. On January 8, 2007, Rank Group shareholders approved the Seminoles' US$965 million offer. The Tribe expects to have finalized the deal by March 5, 2007. [ [http://www.planyourmeetings.com/newsbrief/2007/01/03/seminole-tribe-of-florida-rocks-out/ Seminole Tribe of Florida rocks out] ] The Hollywood Casino/Hotel location gained some notoriety on February 8, 2007 when Anna Nicole Smith died there.

On June 22, 2008 the Seminole Hard Rock in Hollywood, Florida began "Vegas-style" table gambling instead of using just type-II slots. The tribe payed the state of Florida US$100 million for the 25-year pact.Fact|date=September 2008

Music memorabilia

Hard Rock is better known for its atmosphere than its food. The cafes not only solicit donations of music memorabilia, but also purchase a number of items at auctions around the world. Hard Rock has the world's largest collection of such items. Memorabilia like autographed guitars, outfits from world tours and rare photographs are oft to be found mounted on cafe walls. The collection began in 1979 with the gift of an un-signed guitar (a Red Fender Lead II) from Eric Clapton, who was a regular at the first restaurant in London. Pete Townshend of The Who got wind of this and sent in one of "his" guitars, also un-signed. Attached was a note: "Mine's as good as his! Love, Pete." Hard Rock has so much material in its archive, over 70,000 items, that it opened a Hard Rock museum named "The Vault" in Orlando, Florida in January 2003 (only for it to close in September 2004). The London Vault remains open, located near the original cafe. In 2005, legendary hard rock band Deep Purple launched their new album "Rapture of the Deep" in Hard Rock Cafe London. This show was released as a DVD. [ [http://www.thehighwaystar.com/news/2007/05/17/montreux2006-dvd-details/ The Highway Star — Montreux'2006 DVD details ] ]

Memorabilia is displayed on location for seven years before it is returned to Hard Rock headquarters in Orlando for archival storage. On occasion, Hard Rock has given an item back to its original owner, such as when Peter Frampton asked for his displayed guitar back. [ [http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20061208/music_nm/hardrock_job_dc_1 Dec 2006 profile article on Hard Rock archivist Don Bernstine] ]

Part of the Hard Rock Cafe's success is the inclusion of its own brand merchandise. The classic Hard Rock t-shirt was created when the original cafe sponsored a local football (soccer) team. The shirts became a popular item and lead to the creation of the line of merchandise that is an integral part of Hard Rock's business today. Besides the classic tee, there are many different styles of shirts, hats, jackets, glassware, shot glasses, and pins to name a few. Many of these items considered to be collectibles with many being cafe, hotel, or casino specific. These items can generally only be purchased on site, with few items being available from Hard Rock's website.

Hard Rock even has a pin club for those who collect pins, with members holding meetings to buy, sell, and trade pins.

Gallery


Bangalore (2008)
Universal Studios Florida (1990-98)
Chicago
Caracas
Warsaw, Poland
Baltimore
Sacramento at the K street mall
Hong Kong


Hard_Rock_Cafe,_Toronto, The second Hard Rock Cafe location and the home of classic rock station Q107

French Quarter Hard Rock Cafe, New Orleans
Walk_of_Fame_(Mick Jagger) at Niagara Falls, Ontario

Hard_Rock_Cafe_near_Campus Martius Park in Detroit
Universal Studios Hollywood, Los Angeles

Hard_Rock_Cafe,_Orlando (World's Largest Hard Rock Cafe)
Bogotá, Colombia
Myrtle Beach South Carolina
Oslo
Washington, D.C.

References

External links

* [http://www.hardrock.com Official site]
* [http://www.hardrockhotels.com Official Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Site]
* [http://www.expotv.com/videos/reviews/21/188/Hard-Rock-Cafe/175237 Video review of the Hard Rock Cafe with on-site footage]
* [http://memorabilia.hardrock.com/ Hard Rock Memorabilia Gallery]


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