Journey's Neal Schon Paid $290K in San Francisco Wedding Settlement

Robert Knight
Journey's Neal Schon and wife Michaele Salahi on their 2013 wedding day

San Francisco supervisors will consider the settlement on Thursday.

San Francisco supervisors will pay $290,000 to settle a lawsuit by the guitarist of rock band Journey over his lavish 2013 wedding to a former reality television star.

“We’re glad we could reach an amicable resolution to the dispute and wish the Schons every happiness in married life,” Matt Dorsey, a spokesman for City Attorney Dennis Herrera, said Wednesday.

Neal Schon married Real Housewives of D.C. star Michaele Salahi in December 2013 at the Palace of Fine Arts with a reception at an adjacent building that once housed the Exploratorium science museum.

Journey Guitarist Neal Schon Suing Over Wedding Charges

Schon said he agreed to pay the city $58,000 for the use, but was surprised to learn days before the wedding that he would have to pay $240,000 for the opulent event to go on. He reluctantly paid, likening the price hike to "extortion."

The couple sued in federal court in February, claiming that the city unfairly jacked up the fee after learning the couple planned to broadcast the event on pay-per-view.

City Attorney Dennis Herrera initially defended the higher charge as appropriate for a commercial event. He could not be reached immediately for comment Wednesday, which is a government holiday.

In a statement this week, Michaele Schon called the city's conduct "reprehensible" and said "hopefully, this will make the city think twice before doing this to anyone else in the future."

Journey is a band nearly synonymous with San Francisco in some circles. Its song "Don't Stop Believin'" is the unofficial theme song of the San Francisco Giants.

Before starring in the 2010 season of Housewives, Salahi made headlines when she and her then-husband crashed a state dinner at the White House in 2009.

UPDATE: This story was updated after the settlement payment was finalized.


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