On our recent Disneyland trip, we were lucky enough to be able to stay at the Disneyland Hotel. A lot of people(including us) often wonder whether or not it is worth it to stay on property at Disneyland due to the prices so we were pretty excited that we had the chance so we can share our experience with you!
First of all, let me start by saying, if you are on a budget, the Disneyland Hotel is not worth the extra cost. I really don’t like starting the post off like that, but I also don’t want to make the very budget conscious Disneyland traveler read this entire post just to find out my opinion on that.
So if you’re unfamiliar with the Disneyland Resort on property vs. off property thing, don’t worry- I will write a full post on that. But sticking with on property, since that’s what this post is about, you should know that there are only THREE Disneyland Resort hotels. They include the Disneyland Hotel(obviously), the Grand Californian and Paradise Pier Hotel. I had been warned by a lot of people not to bother with Paradise Pier….and Grand Californian- why you SO expensive? So we stayed at the Disneyland Hotel.
I had been told this was the most “magical” Disneyland Resort hotel anyway, so I would have chosen it regardless.
We did get a killer deal by using hotels.com and actually saved about $200/night, which I was pretty thrilled about. It was still not cheap, but definitely more affordable. I would recommend checking third party sites before booking directly, simply because you still get all of the same perks and usually at a lower cost.
The hotel just got a huge refurb a few years ago and I am not sure what it looked like before but its super fun and magical now.
We stayed in a standard room, which was pretty “standard” as far as size goes. We stayed in two other Anaheim area hotels during this trip and honestly, all of the rooms were pretty close to the same size.
We, of course, loved the theming of the room and the magical headboards are a seriously fun touch of magic.
Throughout the room and the hotel, there are lots of added little touches and we loved finding them.
In the Disneyland Hotel, there is a gift shop, Goofy’s Kitchen, which is a sit down restaurant and the Coffee House.
While we did not eat at Goofy’s Kitchen, you better believe if it says Coffee in the name, I’m there. So we stopped at the Coffee House. They have more than just coffee and we ended up getting a donut along with dole whip, because, well why not?
I actually didn’t realize that the Disneyland Hotel had dole whip, so this was a nice surprise. And it was too cold for the pool while we were there, but the Coffee House is right by the pool, so if you’re there in warmer weather, it could be pretty amazing to grab a dole whip and relax by the pool.
To get to the Parks from the Disneyland Hotel is pretty easy, but keep in mind, its actually not any closer than staying off property. You have to go through the back of the hotel and into Downtown Disney, where you can take the monorail into Tomorrowland. Or, you can keep walking all the way through Downtown Disney to get there. You’ll go through security to get into Downtown Disney, so you don’t have to worry about all of that later.
The Disneyland Hotel is about a 5 minute walk from Downtown Disney, which is also nice in case you are staying there during a non-Park day or want to grab a bite to eat on your way home from the Parks.
The biggest perk of staying at a Disneyland Resort Hotel is that you get the Extra Magic Hour that is only available to DLR hotel guests. This will get you in an extra hour early to the Parks on select days. This is not to be confused with Magic Mornings(full post coming soon) and the thing that makes this a little more of a perk over Magic Mornings is that you can into Disney California Adventure early, whereas Magic Mornings are only good for Disneyland.
The reason that this is exciting is because Cars Land will get very busy as the day goes on and Radiator Springs Racers will have waits that will make you want to sell your right arm on the black market for a FastPass. That being said, it was a very nice perk to have, but not worth the extra cost just for that one extra.
So, do we recommend the Disneyland Hotel? Well, if you are only planning to go to Disneyland once, have no budget restrictions and are planning on actually spending some time at your hotel, then sure, why not? It’s cute, its fun, your kids(or your inner child) will love it.
But, if you’re like most people and have to have a budget for your vacations, then I suggest you stay off property. There are some hotels that are actually closer to the Parks and if that’s where you are planning to spend most of your time anyway, then blowing your budget on your hotel is probably not the best idea.
What do you think? Have you stayed on property at Disneyland? Do you recommend it? Let me know!