Last updated: 10:30 AM ET, Fri January 15 2016

Yosemite National Park Changes Historic Property Names

Destination & Tourism | Janeen Christoff | January 15, 2016

Yosemite National Park Changes Historic Property Names

PHOTO: The Awahnee will now be called the Majestic Yosemite Hotel.

Yosemite National Park announced today that it would change the names of several iconic properties within the park to avoid trademark infringement due to a new concessioner agreement. Historic properties such as the Awahnee Hotel and the Badger Pass Ski Resort will no longer hold those monikers, as the names were trademarked by DNC Parks & Resorts at Yosemite, Inc. (DNCY), a subsidiary of the Delaware North Companies.

Yosemite National Park's concessioner contract become available in July 2014. The National Park Service reviewed the contract and selected Yosemite Hospitality LLC, a subsidiary of Aramark, to be the new primary concessioner in Yosemite National Park. The concessioner provides lodging, retail, recreational services and food to more than 4 million annual visitors to Yosemite. Because the current concessioner, DNCY, claimed ownership and the right to payment for tradenames, trademarks and other intellectual property that it argues is worth more than $50 million, the National Park Service included the option to change the names of these sites as part of the prospectus.

“While it is unfortunate that we must take this action, changing the names of these facilities will help us provide seamless service to the American public during the transition to the new concessioner. Yosemite National Park belongs to the American people,” stated Don Neubacher, Yosemite National Park superintendent. “This action will not affect the historic status of the facilities, as they are still important cultural icons to the National Park Service and the public. Our stewardship of these properties is unwavering.”

Neubacher announced the buildings and facilities within the park that will be renamed to eliminate the potential for trademark infringement issues. The changes will impact several iconic buildings and landmarks listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

New names have been chosen that are intended to minimize the impact on visitors and include:

Yosemite Lodge at the Falls is to become Yosemite Valley Lodge.

The Ahwahnee will now be The Majestic Yosemite Hotel.

Curry Village will be known as Half Dome Village.

Wawona Hotel is now the Big Trees Lodge.

Badger Pass Ski Area is the Yosemite Ski & Snowboard Area

According to the National Park Service, DNCY or its predecessor had previously trademarked or service-marked several nationally significant properties in the park without the prior concurrence of the Park Service, including The Ahwahnee Hotel, Badger Pass, Curry Village, Wawona Hotel, and Yosemite Lodge. 

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