Disneyland’s 3 On Site Hotels, Compared

Get to know the difference between the three on site Disneyland Resort Hotels

Learn more about the Disneyland Hotel, Grand Californian Hotel, and Paradise Pier Hotel

What’s better than taking a trip to the Happiest Place on Earth? Booking a multiple day stay at a Disneyland Resort Hotel!

While there are many wonderful neighbor hotel options near Anaheim, California’s beloved Disneyland, nothing beats the three Disneyland Resort hotel options: Paradise Pier Hotel, Disneyland Hotel, and the Grand Californian Hotel & Spa.

However, which of the three is the best option for you and your family or friends? Lucky for you, we’ve got you covered!

But before we begin, let’s discuss some of what the three hotels’ rooms have in common:

  • Desk
  • High-speed Internet – WiFi Service
  • Hair Dryer
  • Dual Line Phone with Voice Mail
  • In-room celebrations
  • Ice Bucket
  • Crib Pack ‘n Play Upon Request
  • Alarm Clock
  • Coffee Maker or Keurig machine
  • Air Conditioning / Heat
  • Satellite TV
  • Shower & Bathtub Combo
  • Iron & Board
  • Bathroom amenities
  • Safe – In Room
  • Mini-refrigerator

1 Paradise Pier Hotel

Paradise Pier Hotel by Castles, Capes & Clones, on Flickr
“Paradise Pier Hotel” (CC BY-ND 2.0) by Castles, Capes & Clones

Disneyland Resort’s Paradise Pier Hotel offers relaxing yet quality rooms – many of which overlook beautiful California Adventure. Depending on your room, you just might get a bird’s-eye view of the noteworthy World of Color spectacular at nighttime.

The rooms are decked out in casual-fun beach décor from beach ball pillows, to sunshine mirrors, to sand-colored walls. But before checking out your room, be sure to take a photo with the Goofy statue in the Paradise Pier lobby!

If you’re lucky, you might get selected to be Paradise Pier’s “Big Kahuna Family of the Day” when checking in where you’ll receive: a balloon bouquet, “Big Kahuna” pins for the whole family, a free family photo with a Mickey and friends-autographed picture frame, and an upgraded hotel room overlooking Californian Adventure.

When you wake up, head down to Paradise Pier’s all-you-can-eat Surf’s Up! breakfast buffet with Mickey and friends featuring yummy favorites such as Mickey Waffles, Minnie Pancakes, scrambled eggs, bacon and sausage, and the rest of the fixings.

Later in the day, go for a swim, head down the waterslide, or lounge out by Paradise Pier’s rooftop poolside. If you get hungry, head on over to The Sand Bar for a hot dog, sandwich, snack, or cold drink.

While the kids are out and about, adults can kick back and relax at Paradise Pier’s Surfside Lounge for a cocktail or go with the whole family for a quieter breakfast, lunch, or dinner for omelets, croissant sandwiches, smoked salmon, burgers, artisan pizzas, or other offerings.

Recreation

  • Rooftop pools with waterslide
  • Surf’s Up! Breakfast with Mickey and Friends
  • Firework show that can be viewed from the pool deck
  • Hotel guest-only California Adventure powerwalk
  • Paradise theater
  • Special Disney movie screenings
  • Arcade
  • Trivia games
  • Fitness center
  • Spa

Price Range

A stay at Paradise Pier currently is priced at $316 a night for a room with a standard view while a 2-bedroom suite costs $938 per night and can house up to 10 adults. The price for their highest-level room, their signature suite, is unlisted.

Best for

  • Families
  • Beach fans
  • Water lovers

Book your stay

2 Disneyland Hotel

Disneyland Hotel by HarshLight, on Flickr
“Disneyland Hotel” (CC BY 2.0) by HarshLight

Walking into the Disneyland Hotel, you’ll be greeted by cozy, plush, purple chairs and a blue, curved sofa that has royal flair.

Head off to your room for ultimate luxury. Basic rooms offer blues, golds, and browns to reflect the magical ambiance of Disney. If you opt for a signature suite, you’ll be floored by the breath-taking décor your themed room offers that is completely out of a storybook. Themes include: Adventureland, Pirates of the Caribbean, Big Thunder, Ambassador, Fairytale, and Mickey Mouse Penthouse and can sleep up to 6 adults.

To start off your day, meet Goofy for a buffet-style breakfast at Goofy’s Kitchen showcasing made-to-order omelets, fresh pastries, fruit, Mickey Mouse waffles and pancakes, and other delicious bites to eat.

Later, go for a quick swim in one of the Disneyland Hotel’s themed pools, or go on a Disney-themed nature walk around breathtaking gardens. If you get hungry, stop by for a tropical snack or lunch at Tangaroa Terrace from Sweet and Spicy Asian Wings to Panko-crusted Chinse Long Beans. Then head on over to the Fantasia Shop located in the Fantasy Tower for sweet Disney souvenirs.

For dinner, dine at Steakhouse 55 for a signature steak, crab cakes, pork belly, lobster or sea scallops, or other luxury grub. When your day comes to a close, watch the sunset from the poolside, and check out the beautiful glowing monorail waterfall.

P.S., Throughout your stay at the Disneyland Hotel, be sure to be on the look out for hidden Mickeys and other sources of magic!

Recreation

  • Themed pools with waterslide
  • Luxury, themed eateries
  • 5 different-themed suites
  • Special Disney movie screenings
  • Hotel guest-only California Adventure powerwalk
  • Character greetings
  • Fitness center
  • Happiest Hotel on Earth Tour
  • Island-time evenings
  • Poolside cabanas
  • Trivia challenges

Price Range

A stay at Paradise Pier currently is priced at $418 a night for a room with a standard view while a 3-bedroom suite costs $1,261 per night and can house up to 14 adults. The price for their highest-level room, their signature suite, is unlisted.

Best for

  • Families
  • Die-hard Disney fans
  • Water lovers

Book your stay

3 Grand Californian Hotel & Spa

Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel by Castles, Capes & Clones, on Flickr
“Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel” (CC BY-ND 2.0) by Castles, Capes & Clones

And finally, let’s get acquainted with the Grand Californian Hotel & Spa. Upon walking in, you’ll be escorted by a Grand Californian cast member to make your stay a little extra special. (This place is massive – you’ll want an escort!)

Inspired by national park lodges, you’ll find large ceilings, lots of wood and stone accents, large comfy chairs, rustic décor, and a warm hearth in this luxurious hotel’s massive lobby. It’s a great place to pull out a good book or just relax. Even the hotel rooms offer beautiful woodwork for a forest-y vibe.

Upon waking the next morning, go for an all-you-can-eat buffet at Storytellers Café where you’ll find Mickey and friends along with a mouthwatering menu filled with yummy goodies including Mickey-shaped waffles, bagels and lox, fruit, delicious pastries, and more. If you’d rather have a quieter breakfast, head on over to the Heartstone Lounge for simpler coffee and a pastry.

If you’re tired after a long day at Disneyland or California Adventure, receive a massage or other special treatment from the Grand Californian’s spa. Then drop by Acorn’s Gift & Goods in the main lobby for classy souvenirs.

Then make it a night to remember by opting for a lovely dinner at Napa Rose for seafood, chicken, veal, pasta, a fresh salad, or perhaps an adult beverage or two. After the day is long over, we know you’ll sleep snug in your cozy hotel room!

Recreation & Special Amenities

  • Themed pools with waterslide
  • Special theme park admission
  • 5-star dining
  • Luxurious spa
  • Special Disney movie screenings
  • Live piano music in the lobby
  • Hotel guest-only California Adventure powerwalk
  • Art of Craft Tour
  • Fitness center
  • Poolside cabanas
  • The Grand Quest scavenger hunt
  • Trivia challenges

Price Range

A stay at Paradise Pier currently is priced at $470 a night for a room with a standard view while a 3-bedroom suite can cost $1,827 per night and can house up to 12 adults. The price for their highest-level room, their signature suite, is unlisted.

Best for

  • Adults
  • Introverts
  • California lovers
  • Sophisticated or romantic individuals
  • Subtle Disney fans

Book your stay

 

4 Overview

Overall, while there are many great neighborhood hotels near Disneyland, paying more for a Disney-themed or more luxurious stay is all worth it as you receive great perks from phenomenal poolside experiences, to Disney-themed food, to early entry into California Adventure.

For semi-Disney, child-friendly luxury for a more affordable cost, Paradise Pier may be for you and your family. Consider the Disneyland Hotel if your family want to make your trip as Disney as possible. As for individuals who want a relaxing, romantic, quieter stay without much Disney, the Grand Californian offers a luxurious atmosphere – but is might not be as suitable for younger children considering its peaceful and grand atmosphere.

In the end, all three of Disney’s hotels are wonderful, but if you want something versatile in terms of not too much Disney, Paradise Pier and the Grand Californian Hotel give you a favorable taste.

Leave a Reply