I have often checked into the Ahwahnee in Yosemite Valley after emerging, filthy and undernourished, from the backcounty. A hot shower in one of the cottages, an Ahwahnee Burger, a glass (or three) of wine and boysenberry pie a la mode delivered to the cottage patio -- bliss!

Imagine my shock when I heard that the Ahwahnee had been renamed The Majestic because the former concessionaire had trademarked its name, and that of Curry Village and several other historic places. The San Francisco Chronicle said on March 11, 2016:

The park’s new concessionaire has gone as far as halting sales of “Yosemite National Park” T-shirts because of its predecessor’s claim to the park title. The name “Yosemite” is being used instead.

The article said that the Park Service had not given up and was fighting the case, but I have not found anything more recent on the subject.

What is happening? What is an informed prognosis on the outcome of the legal battle? The Majestic sounds like a Las Vegas hotel, but I better stop before I rant.

1 Answer 1


The name change is going ahead, at least for now

The Ahwahnee Hotel and other Yosemite National Park landmarks soon will be renamed amid a legal dispute between the government and the facilities' outgoing operator.

On March 1, the famed Ahwahnee — a name affixed to countless trail guides and family memories — will become the Majestic Yosemite Hotel. And Curry Village, a collection of cabins near the center of the park that has carried the same name since the 1800s, will become Half Dome Village, park spokesman Scott Gediman said Thursday.

“This is not something we did willingly,” said Gediman, noting that the government was fighting to reclaim the old names in hopes that they someday will be restored.

A few other things are going to be changed

Also affected will be:

Yosemite Lodge at the Falls, becoming Yosemite Valley Lodge.

Wawona Hotel, becoming Big Trees Lodge.

Badger Pass Ski Area, becoming Yosemite Ski & Snowboard Area.

Source (Jan 14,2017)

With that said, I have seen the government change the names of a few landmarks, and usually the locals continue refer to them by their old names.

  • 1
    Bah! If they really wanted to fix it they could deliberately punch a hole in trademark law.
    – Joshua
    Commented Feb 6, 2017 at 19:52

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