Deals & Cases

Trademark protection for „ROYAL SAVOY Lausanne, The Bürgenstock Selection“

12. November 2012 – Walder Wyss successfully represented a leading hotel management company in relation to the trademark registration of the combined trademark „ROYAL SAVOY Lausanne, The Bürgenstock Selection“ for various hotel and guest services. The Swiss PTO had denied the trademark protection on the grounds that the word „SAVOY“ is a geographical indication for a region in France and is, therefore, misleading. Upon Appeal of the trademark owner, the Federal Administrative Tribunal reversed the decision of the Swiss PTO.

In its decision of November 12, 2012, the Federal Administrative Tribunal adopted the argument of the trademark owner according to which the word SAVOY when used for a hotel is not perceived as a geographical indication anymore. „SAVOY“ has rather become a synonymous word for luxury and prestigious goods and services. Accordingly, the trademark ROYAL SAVOY, Lausanne is not likely to mislead on the geographical origin and thus is eligible for trademark protection for a hotel in Switzerland. The Federal Administrative Tribunal, therefore, advised the Swiss PTO to register the trademark „ROYAL SAVOY Lausanne, The Bürgenstock Selection“ in the Swiss Trademark Register.

The team was headed by Magda Streuli-Youssef (Partner, IPIT) and also included Simone Dobler (Associate, IPIT).