During my recent visit to the Disneyland Resort, I had the opportunity to stay in all three of their onsite hotels. In this post, I’ll be giving you my thoughts on the Grand Californian Hotel and Spa.
Let me just start by saying this is quite possibly the most beautiful hotel I’ve ever had the pleasure to stay in. The lobby alone is incredibly impressive and gorgeous. If you’ve ever visited Animal Kingdom Lodge or Wilderness Lodge over at Walt Disney World, the design will look familiar to you as all three were designed by the same architect.
Though not quite as sprawling as some of the Walt Disney World resorts, this is the biggest resort on Disneyland property. It’s home to Storyteller’s Cafe, the character meal location, as well as Napa Rose, considered one of the best restaurants in the city. I did have breakfast at Storyteller’s and it was delicious. Characters there included Chip and Dale, Pluto, and Koda from Brother Bear.
The rooms were fairly standard size, though I felt they could use a bit of a refresh. The rooms were not quite as luxurious as I thought they should be for as much as they cost per night, however, the beds were comfortable and the rooms were clean. The nightly turn down service with chocolates on the pillows was a nice touch.
For me, the main draw of this hotel is the gate to California Adventure located within. In fact, my room was located just a minute’s walk from the gate so I could be inside California Adventure park within 5 minutes. The gate location is right near Grizzly River Run Rapids and steps away from Soarin. In the mornings, only hotel guests are allowed to use the gate, so if you’re trying to beat the morning rush, this is a fantastic perk. It’s also very convenient for a midday break if you’re so inclined.
The hotel also opens up to Downtown Disney so it’s very conveniently located for shopping. From there, it’s just a couple more minutes walk to Disneyland Park. This is the closest onsite property so if location is worth more to you than price, this is where you want to stay.
Overall, it’s a great resort but I don’t think it has as much charm and personality as Disneyland Hotel. I think this hotel would be fantastic for adults only trips or couples just due to the sophisticated decor, however, the location makes it perfect for families with small kids.