There's a Viper in That Pink Taco!
At the Viper Room | Photo by brian boulos via Flickr
Harry Morton, son of famed Hard Rock hotelier Peter Morton, is no longer content with opening crudely-named margarita bars. No, the Li-Lo-lovin' entrepreneur has decided to purchase the infamous Sunset Strip club The Viper Room: with plans to franchise, of course. While the Viper Room has only been a part of the Strip since 1993, it immediately rocketed to infamy when River Phoenix collapsed and died of a heroin overdose outside the club in the fall of that same year.
Plans are already in the works to give Las Vegas and Scottsdale, AZ their very own Viper "brand experience." The LA Times blog The Guide breaks it down:
Arich Berghammer, president of the yet-to-be-named company overseeing the chain of clubs, says that the Viper Room brand “is strong” and that they will not make significant changes at the management level. “It works as it is,” he says, adding that they will only make minor cosmetic changes to the Sunset Strip location.
Apparently the club's current owners (who will maintain a stake in the new business venture) had such an attachment to the Viper "brand" that they have threatened other bars with the same name with trademark lawsuits. No word on whether or not Morton plans to perhaps trace an outline of Phoenix's overdosing body outside of each new club. Can we really expect anything less from a man who named his restaurant franchise after A VAGINA??!?!?