A Mexican establishment calling itself 'Hotel California' had attempted to register the term as a trademark in the U.S.
Rock legends The Eagles have settled a lawsuit against a Mexican establishment calling itself ‘Hotel California’, the name of the group’s biggest and most famous hit.
Both sides agreed to drop their respective legal actions after the hotel’s owners withdrew their application to trademark the name ‘Hotel California’ in the United States.
The owners “flatly denied” any wrongdoing when the lawsuit was originally brought against them in the middle of 2017, and said that any confusion was hard to fathom, but on Friday (January 19th), the Eagles’ lawyer Thomas Jirgal said that the case has now been settled “by mutual agreement”.
The Eagles in concert back in 2011
The band had claimed that the establishment had “actively encouraged” guests to believe that the hotel was associated with the song and The Eagles, by playing the group’s songs in the lobby and by selling souvenirs like fridge magnets and T-shirts with ‘Hotel California’ branded on them.
“Multiple online reviews make clear” that visitors were deceived, the group added when filing their lawsuit, though the hotel’s owners had said that any confusion was unlikely.
‘Hotel California’ is the title track of The Eagles’ 1976 album of the same name, and it hit the top of the Billboard charts in February 1977 when released as a single, going on to sell more than three million copies in the States and winning the Grammy for Record of the Year.
The song is not about any specific place, with many believing its lyrics are actually about addiction, but the building on the front of the album’s cover is of the Beverly Hills Hotel.
By a dint of irony, the group’s usage of that photo without their permission nearly landed them in court at the time, until the band pointed out that the hotel’s bookings had subsequently tripled in the wake of the album’s release.