Vegas’ Hard Rock Hotel Sold

Hotel operator Morgans Hotel Group has agreed to buy the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas for $770 million in cash.

The sale of the 647-room hotel and 30,000-square-foot casino on 41 acres, near the Strip and not far from the city’s airport, will net Hard Rock founder and chairman Peter Morton more than $731 million, he said May 11th.

“It was just time to take the chips off the table,” Morton said. “I’m looking to do some different things in my life. That was it.”

The Hard Rock sale must be approved by Nevada gaming authorities, The Wall Street Journal reported. Morgans Chief Executive Ed Scheetz reportedly said the hotel operator would team up with an established company in Las Vegas to run the gambling operations.

Morton said he will no longer be affiliated with the property once the sale is complete, according to the WSJ. The sale of the Vegas property doesn’t affect the Hard Rock Café chain.

Morton co-founded the Hard Rock brand in 1971. In 1996, he sold his chain of Hard Rock Cafés to London-based Rank Group for $410 million. He opened the hotel-casino in 1995.

Morgans Hotel Group, an owner and manager of luxury boutique hotels, runs Hudsons, Morgans and Royalton hotels in New York and the Delano in Miami, among other properties.