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

Check out The Doors standing outside the original Hard Rock Café in downtown Los Angeles.


On December 17, 1969, after The Doors took what would become the Morrison Hotel”  album cover photosJim Morrrison wanted to get a drink. It was late in the afternoon so they decided to drive down to Skid Row where all the bars were. As they drove though downtown Los Angeles looking for a spot to go in, they spotted the Hard Rock Café out of the windows of John Densmore’s Volkswagen van and said,

“Oh, we gotta go in there!”

The Doors Los Angeles Morrison Hotel Hard Rock Cafe Location Mao

The Doors took some more photos inside and outside the Hard Rock Café and used them for the back cover of The Morrison Hotel album as well as the inner gatefold.

The Doors Morrison Hotel Back Cover Hard Rock Cafe

The Doors Hard Rock Cafe Morrison Hotel Bar Photo Jim Morrison

The Doors Hard Rock Cafe Jim Morrison Bar Photos Morrison Hotel

Here’s “Morrison Hotel” album gatefold of the record.

The Doors Morrison Hotel Hard Rock Cafe Vinyl Photo


Here’s the address of the Hard Rock Cafe and what it looks like today…

300 East 5th Street, Los Angeles, 90013


The Doors actually named the each side of the record.  Side One: Hard Rock Cafe and Side Two: Morrison Hotel

The Doors Morrison Hotel Hard Rock Cafe

The Hard Rock Cafe as we know it now has nothing to do with the bar where these 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 to use the name. they asked…

“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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