The big question on our trips is which resort hotel we will stay at in Disneyland. We have to fly over the ocean to go, so we have a long time to save up between trips and love the on-property perks. Now that we’ve stayed at all 3, it’s nice to have an overview of the ones we will stay at for future trips that might help your planning as well.
Paradise Pier Hotel
This hotel wasn’t originally a resort hotel, it is the lowest priced of the 3 resort hotels, yet not value-priced. The decor is California beach style, my boys had lots of fun with the beach ball pillows. My biggest complaint is the elevator situation- there are 3 main elevators for the whole hotel and one glass elevator on a different system. We did learn the trick- go up to get down, which reminded us of “go left to turn right”. Just one of those opposite-world kind of things. The 3rd-floor rooftop pool is heated and the kids loved the “California Screamin'” waterslide. The lobby stays pretty busy and they have a few restaurants there as well: PCH Grill (home to Mickey’s Surf’s Up breakfast and the Kitchen Sink dessert) and Surfside Lounge.
Just coming off a refurbishment, the Disneyland Hotel is the original and my favorite of the resort hotels. The headboards come alive with lights and music (“A Dream is a Wish”) and I also like that the building names reflect more of the parks: Adventure, Fantasy and Frontier. The D-ticket pool, E-ticket pool and Monorail pool with waterslides and hot tubs are newly open as well with a kiddie area. There are a few more dining options here: Coffee House, Goofy’s Kitchen (premium character dining), Steakhouse 55, Tagaroa Terrace- Casual Island Dining and Trader Sam’s- Enchanted Tiki Bar. It’s best proximity is to the monorail that goes into Tomorrowland of Disneyland park, which I love after a long day of walking the parks!
Grand Californian Hotel & Spa
This resort hotel reminds me of the Wilderness Lodge- very similar with the same architecture and big open feel. It is the most deluxe of the 3 and also has the Villas associated with it for DVC members. It has it’s own entrance into the California Adventure park and is right in the middle of Downtown Disney with about the same distance to the monorail as Disneyland Hotel, and it’s proximity to both parks are the best. There are also 3 pool areas to play in at this resort, the Fountain pool, Redwood pool with waterslide and the Mariposa pool with hot tub. Whitewater Snacks is near one of the pools, Hearthstone Lounge is in the main lobby, Storytellers’ Cafe is home to the buffets and Chip and Dale’s Critter breakfast and their signature restaurant is the Napa Rose. It’s amazing to me how you can find peace and quiet in this resort even with how many guests there are and how it’s right in the middle of all the action. The Mandara Spa is also in this hotel as well as many other services (babysitting for ages 5-12, tours and classes)
All of the resort hotels sleep 5 in a room, usually with 2 Queens and a daybed but the Grand Californian has some rooms with a bunkbed and pull out trundle.
Have you stayed at any of these resorts? What did you think? Let me know in the comment box below.
- Disneyland Resort Dining: Fun Facts (chipandco.com)
- Special Ticket at Disneyland Resort Offers Two Days of Fun for $99 for Southern California Residents (chipandco.com)
Be sure to check out our sister site Disney Addicts, where we feature all the best Disney Planning Tips and more! Or drop by our You Might Be a Disney Addict Facebook group where you can chat about your your home away from home... Disney!