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Eagles Settle Lawsuit Over Hotel California Name

Band had alleged that Mexican hotel was trying to monopolize on its brand

Hotel California, a classic hotel in Silicon Valley, Palo Alto, California. Don Felder and Joe Walsh of the Eagles, 1977.

The Eagles and a Mexican hotel called Hotel California have settled a lawsuit over the latter's name.

Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images, Gijsbert Hanekroot/Getty Images

The Eagles have settled a lawsuit filed last year to prevent a Mexican hotel from calling itself Hotel California. The hoteliers, Hotel California Baja LLC, withdrew their application for a U.S. trademark, according to Reuters.

The decision to dismiss the suit was mutual. The band had sued the company, which operates the Todos Santos hotel in Baja California Sur, with the U.S. District Court in Los Angeles, but both parties agreed to call it off Wednesday. The news services said that the decision coincided the same day that the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office accepted the company’s request to abandon its application.

A rep for the Eagles declined to comment to Rolling Stone. Hotel California Baja LLC did not immediately respond to Rolling Stone’s request for comment.

The band had alleged that the company were attempting to mislead hotel patrons into thinking that they had sanctioned the use of the song title by playing the Eagles’ music around its property. Moreover, the Eagles claimed that it was part of a campaign for the hotel to sell merchandise such at T-shirts and posters that was branded “Hotel California.”

In their response, the hoteliers denied wrongdoing. The company said it was unlikely fans would be confused.

The hotel, which is located across the U.S. border about 1,000 miles south of San Diego, had been called Hotel California when it opened in 1950, Reuters reports. Its name changed over the years, but when Canadians John and Debbie Stewart purchased it in 2001, they decided to restore the name.

The band issued the song on their Hotel California album in 1976. According to Don Henley, who wrote the song with Glenn Frey and Don Felder, the tune was intended as commentary about their surroundings. “We were all middle-class kids from the Midwest,” he once said. “‘Hotel California’ was our interpretation of the high life in Los Angeles.” 

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