Peter Morton

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Peter Morton
Morton in 2011
Born (1947-08-07) August 7, 1947 (age 72)
EducationB.S.B.A. University of Denver
Known forco-founder of the Hard Rock Café
Spouse(s)Paulene Stone (1980–1989)
Tarlton Pauley (1990–1997)
Parent(s)Arnie Morton

Peter Morton (born August 7, 1947) is a businessman from the United States. He is the co-founder of the Hard Rock Café (along with Isaac Tigrett) and a chain of casual dining restaurants.

Early life and education[edit]

Morton is the son of Arnie Morton, founder of the Morton's Steakhouse chain, and his first wife.[1] In 1969, he graduated from the University of Denver with a B.S.B.A. in restaurant and hotel management.[2] He was a member of the Phi Sigma Delta fraternity.[citation needed]


Morton's first Hard Rock Cafe opened near Hyde Park Corner in London, England. The chain began global expansion in 1982 when Morton and Tigrett agreed to develop their own cafes in various cities. Morton (Hard Rock America) opened Hard Rocks in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, and Houston, Las Vegas; San Diego, La Jolla, and Newport Beach, California; Sydney and Melbourne, Australia; Honolulu and Maui, Hawaii; among others. In 1995, The Rank Organisation (now The Rank Group) acquired the cafes owned by Morton, but Morton retained the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada.

In May 2006, Morton sold the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas to New York-based Morgans Hotel Group. The sale included the rights to the Hard Rock Hotel brand West of the Mississippi River which includes Texas, California, Australia and Vancouver, British Columbia. Morton later founded Morton’s Restaurant in Los Angeles.

Community Involvement[edit]

Morton is a member of the Board of Trustees for the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (MOCA)[3] and sits on the board of trustees for the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC).[4] After Morton made a donation to UCLA, the building at 200 UCLA Medical Plaza was renamed the Peter Morton Medical Building.[5]

Personal life[edit]

His twin sister is Pam Morton.

He is the half-brother of restaurateur and businessman Michael Morton.

His first wife was Paulene Stone, the former wife of Laurence Harvey.[6] They had one son, Harry Morton, the founder of Pink Taco restaurants. His former stepdaughter with Stone was Domino Harvey, the subject of the October 2005 film Domino starring Keira Knightley and directed by Tony Scott. They divorced in 1989.

In 1990, he married Tarlton Pauley; they divorced in 1997.[7]

His father Arnie Morton was a jewish business man.


  1. ^ People: "Happy Days Are Here Again as Peter Morton Opens a Hot Spot That Makes Hollywood Hanker for the '50s" By Wanda McDaniel February 21, 2013
  2. ^ University of Denver Alumni Relations Bulletin: "Daniels Lunch and Learn with Peter Morton" March 1, 2013
  3. ^ "The Museum of Contemporary Art Board of Trustees". Retrieved June 21, 2011.
  4. ^ "About NRDC: Board of Trustees". Retrieved June 21, 2011.
  5. ^ Moster, Roxanne (November 20, 2003). "Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Owner Peter Morton Makes Significant Donation; 200 UCLA Medical Plaza Renamed the Peter Morton Medical Building". UCLA Newsroom (University of California at Los Angeles). Retrieved June 21, 2011.
  6. ^ The Guardian: "The man who feeds Hollywood" March 8, 2003
  7. ^ Los Angeles Times: "Hard Rock founder is sued by ex-wife" by Kim Christensen January 10, 2007

External links[edit]