The Doors Original “Hard Rock Cafe” In Downtown Los Angeles


There’s The Doors standing outside the original Hard Rock Café in downtown Los Angeles. The story was that after they took the Morrison Hotel photos, a few blocks away, Jim Morrrison wanted to go have something to drink. It was late afternoon and they decided to drive down to Skid Row where all the bars were. As they drove down there looking for a likely spot to go in, they spotted this Hard Rock Café out of the windows of John Densmore’s Volkswagen van and said “Oh, we gotta go in there!” Here’s the address and what it look like now…

300 East 5th Street, Los Angeles, 90013


They took some photos inside and outside the Hard Rock Café and used it for the back of The Morrison Hotel album.

the_doors_morrison_hotel_hard_rock_cafe_inside doors_morrison_hotel_hard_rock_cafe


The Doors actually named the each side of the record. Side one: Hard Rock Cafe – Side two: Morrison Hotel

morrison_hotel_side_one_hard_rock_cafe the_doors_morrison_hoteLside_two

The Hard Rock Cafe as we know it now has nothing to do with the bar where the photos were taken. Peter Morton & Isaac Tigrett who founded Hard Rock Cafe were opening up their first restaurant in London and asked The Doors for permission saying “Do you mind if we use the name Hard Rock Cafe? We’re starting a café here in London and we’d like to use the name off your album.” And they said “No, go ahead, fine.”

The Doors “Morrison Hotel” Album Cover Location


  1. Just caught an old Adam 12 episode from 1974 where the officers are looking for a guy and they drive right past the Hard Rock Cafe in downtown LA. Appears at 25 min into 30 minute episode. By 1974, there is a newer sign but it is unmistakably the HRC. Seen next to it is the West Coast Loan Co. Also, side note. There is a Mr Morrison character in the episode. Episode is Suspect Number One originally aired on Oct 29, 1974.

    1. likeslakemichigan says:

      Didn’t see this comment until I looked up HRC after catching it in the same Adam 12 episode. I paused and laughed after seeing it. Love that show and having a little Morrison affect is icing on the cake. They called it skid row then and it looks like little has change with the exception of it not having the original HRC anymore. Too Bad.

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