July 17, 2019

Yosemite National Park Gets Its Iconic Names Back

Yosemite National Park's great Ahwahnee Hotel has its name back.

The Ahwahnee was renamed the Majestic Yosemite Hotel after the park's former concessionaire filed a lawsuit against the National Park Service in September 2015, claiming ownership of some of the park's trade names and trademarks.

The Ahwahnee Hotel became The Majestic Yosemite Hotel. The Wawona Hotel became Big Trees Lodge. Curry Village became Half Dome Village. And Badger Pass Ski Area was renamed Yosemite Ski & Snowboard Area.

As part of a $12 million settlement signed July 15 and paid to the park's former concessionaire, names that had been changed during the lawsuit will revert to their original names.

"We are very excited to restore these historic names to these properties that are so important to Yosemite and the American people," Yosemite National Park spokesman Scott Gediman told CNN Travel. "The American people have been very supportive of the effort to restore these historic place names and this settlement agreement is a win for everybody."

When the lawsuit was filed in 2015, the park service told CNN that DNC Parks and Resorts at Yosemite, a subsidiary of Delaware North, had demanded more than $50 million in compensation for the rights to those names. The company concessionaire ran the park's lodging, retail and food services for more than 20 years before being replaced by Yosemite Hospitality LLC, an Aramark subsidiary, in March 2016.

CNN has reached out to Delaware North for comment.

During the long legal battle, several of Yosemite's iconic structures and locations had been renamed -- temporarily, park officials hoped.

Now the old names are back. Only Yosemite Lodge at the Falls, which was renamed Yosemite Valley Lodge, will keep its new name, Gediman said.

Copyright 2019 Cable News Network. Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. All rights reserved. From https://www.cnn.com. By Katia Hetter, CNN.

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