updated 5/29/2005 5:31:06 PM ET 2005-05-29T21:31:06

The founder of Morton's steakhouses has died.

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Arnold "Arnie" Morton was 83. He had cancer and Alzheimer's disease.

Morton also helped launch the first Playboy Club.

His first restaurant was the Walton Walk, which opened in the 1950s. It paved the way for his relationship with Playboy founder Hugh Hefner.

The first Morton's steakhouse opened in 1978 in Chicago. A former partner says business initially struggled, but then Frank Sinatra dropped by after a concert. The press found out and the partner says "the place went up like a rocket."

Morton sold his steakhouses in the late 1980s. There are now 65 of them around the world.

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