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“If you are going to be trapped in a hotel at Disney, this is the place.”

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Disney's Grand Californian Hotel & Spa
Ranked #32 of 118 Hotels in Anaheim
Petaluma, CA
Level Contributor
19 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“If you are going to be trapped in a hotel at Disney, this is the place.”
Reviewed August 2, 2012

My daughter and I just had our annual "just us" summer vacation and stayed at the Grand Californian. We have been to Disneyland before, but this was our first splurge on their signature hotel. I must say, we had a unique experience, so apologies if my review is a bit odd. You see, my daughter contracted food poisoning at the airport on the way to the hotel. We arrived late on a Tuesday evening, only to have her wake the next morning, for what was supposed to be our big day at the park, to instead becoming violently ill. We never made it into the park. Fast forward two days later, she is so ill, we can't leave the room. I was climbing the walls, struggling between wanting to make her feel better, while listening to the screams of joy coming from the park. It was a less than ideal situation. I finally realized I needed some help, called the front desk, and WOW. Within 30 minutes, I had DVD's from concierge for her (we were in a standard room, and would normally be unable to get these), housekeeping came and cleaned around her (and believe me, we needed them- and they did it all with a smile-God bless them) and room service offered to prepare her some simple broth when she was ready to try and eat. I was really impressed with the way they stepped up accommodate a "standard" room guest.

The hotel itself is really quite beautiful, and the enormous lobby and public spaces are a wonderful place to just "be". When we did try and venture out of the room, we found the large fireplace in the lobby, and while there, an amazing storyteller appeared and told us very funny and engaging stories, I swear my daughter thought I had arranged the whole thing. It was her only real time out of the room, so what were the chances she would be there at just the right time? He was a real life-saver and managed to put a smile on her face.

I must say, I see a lot of reviews that this is an average hotel which charges for location. I agree, you simply can't beat the location, but, this is no average hotel. The rooms are simple, and smaller, but who, other than us, spends much time in their room at Disneyland?! The service make this hotel an absolute stand out, and they have made my daughter and I loyal fans. We have already made plans to return in December to "re-do" our vacation, although it will be much shorter. The room service food was excellent (and I eat a lot of hotel food), the amenities were outstanding. The pools are huge and many, so never looked crowded. The hotel has laundry facilities, clearly a necessary item for our trip. Honestly, I could not have asked for anything more. We plan to return many times.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank PetalumaMamma
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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4,334 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (1,136)
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Bellevue, Washington
Level Contributor
31 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 111 helpful votes
Reviewed August 1, 2012

When you stay at this hotel, you're doing it because it is unbelievably conveniently located to the parks. Thanks to the private entrance into DCA, we were the first people on Radiator Springs in the morning. Going back for a nap in the afternoon is so convenient and easy.

This is probably our fourth time staying at GCH, so we know what to expect by now. The rooms aren't really lavish, but are clean and spacious. Unfortunately, this time, we were put in a 2nd floor 'pool view' room that was immediately above the piano in the lobby. We could hear every kid scream in the lobby and every piano solo. The noise was intense until about an hour after park closing (1am or so) and started up again around 6am as guests lined up.

My #1 tip for staying at this hotel: bring earplugs.

That said, the service here is really great. Check in was fast, we stored bags quickly, our car came quickly, room service took 15 minutes max and the food was very good. We had one instance as we were leaving where the valet guy would not go away without a tip that was completely classless, but other than that, the service at the hotel is great. Oh, and free wifi!

We've stayed in many other hotels around Disney and this really is the best option out there.

Room Tip: Try to avoid 2nd floor rooms around the lobby. Very noisy!
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Mackenzie S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Livermore, California
Level Contributor
78 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
Reviewed July 31, 2012

A lifelong a student of the Arts and Crafts period, I marvel at the public spaces in this hotel. Meticulous attention to detail have created a special experience. The lobby alone is worth a quiet half hour of rest and reflection.

You can't beat the location and getting into the park from inside the hotel is fantastic. However the rooms are beginning to show their age and the price is crazy high. That being said, I love the rooms overlooking Downtown Disney and the convenience of walking just a few steps back to my room each night.

With the recent renovations to the Disneyland hotel, it's going to be a tough decision next trip!

Room Tip: Rooms facing the pool are extremely noisy. Rooms facing Downtown Disney are noisy until the park cl...
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  • Stayed January 2012, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Nilene T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manila
Level Contributor
12 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
Reviewed July 31, 2012

Stayed for 4 nights. Was initially told the bunk bed room was sold out upon reservation. Called a week before arrival to again mention my request. Upon check-in room requested was granted! Definitely a good start for my 2 kids (ages10& 8) who pestered me for the room just like the one on the website! Location of the hotel is worth the premium - in my opinion. Highly suggest you avail of the early entrance priviledge for Disney hotel guests. You can enter the parks an hour earlier than those not staying in Disney hotels. This hotel has its own entrance to Grand California and is a 4 minute walk to Disneyland entrance. The convenience of going back up to your room mid day to take a nap to re-charge kids makes it worth while.
Rooms are clean and daily housekeeping is up to par.
Kids enjoyed the entertainment at Storytellers Cafe for breakfast - but .... they didnt like the food!

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank JMVManila
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fort Collins, CO
Level Contributor
22 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
Reviewed July 30, 2012

In general, other reviewers have summed up this hotel quite well. What guests do need to know is something my daughter and I learned the hard way on July 9, 2012. We opted to take the stairs down from the 5th floor rather than wait for the elevators. Big Mistake! We got to the first floor and the only available door out was the imposing Emergency Exit (an alarm would sound if the door opened). We walked up to the 2nd floor but that door was LOCKED. We went to the 3rd floor . . . LOCKED. We tried the 4th and 5th floors with the same results. For 35 hot and claustrophobic minutes we were locked inside the stairway, banging on the door and calling for help. We even had cell phones with us, but no one was answering. Finally, a guest passed by the door and let us out. We were irate: imagine the panic if that had happened to a child! We reported the incident to the front desk and were told that security measures had recently been made that might have contributed to the problem. We were also told the situation would be resolved. Ironically, a week later my daughter learned that her friend's husband had the exact same thing happen to him at this hotel! Obviously, the problem had not been taken seriously. Be forewarned of this danger -- because there is no signage by the doors that indicates you will not be able to get out. (Maybe management will fix the doors if everyone starts using the only escape -- the Emergency Exit with alarms.)

Room Tip: Ask for one where you can watch the nightly fireworks from your room.
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Viajara
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thornhill, Canada
Level Contributor
141 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 76 helpful votes
Reviewed July 30, 2012

We have stayed at Disney World in Florida before and this was our first visit to Disneyland in California. This hotel was a huge disappointment. The only thing that was great about it was the location. After a long day at the park, it was great to just walk to the hotel and go to your room. The lobby was lovely as well. But that's where it ended. The room was small and very outdated and the bathroom needs a major renovation as well as it wasn't clean. There were hairs on the floor when we arrived. The Disney rep at check in must have been having a bad day as she was miserable. We have never experienced a really unhappy Disney employee so this was quite surprising. The "premium" view room did not have a great view at all, definitely not worth paying for. Also, if you are hungry late at night there are no options. We stayed for 4 nights - All in all this was a very over-priced disappointing hotel.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Ann R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
77 reviews
46 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 81 helpful votes
Reviewed July 29, 2012

Pros: Location - book this hotel if you want to be able to get back to your hotel room straight from the park. That's the best it has going for it.
Cons: Hotel rooms are dated and have seen better days. Service lacked attention to detail. We had previously arranged to have a late checkout and when we got to our rooms, the key didn't work and we had to go back again to front desk (a hike from our rooms).. For the prices charged, this shouldn't happen.

Room Tip: Tip - Be sure to ask what room you are booking and compare it to the hotel map first before acccepti...
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank NOIDK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Disney's Grand Californian Hotel & Spa

Property: Disney's Grand Californian Hotel & Spa
Address: 1600 S Disneyland Dr, Anaheim, CA 92802-2317
Location: United States > California > Orange County > Anaheim
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Spa Hotel in Anaheim
#3 Luxury Hotel in Anaheim
#6 Business Hotel in Anaheim
#9 Romantic Hotel in Anaheim
#17 Family Hotel in Anaheim
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Disney's Grand Californian Hotel & Spa 4.5*
Number of rooms: 1019
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This stunning hotel offers premium accommodations and rich dining experiences in American Craftsman style and elegance. With its world-class spa, an impressive array of amenities and impeccable Disney service, Disney's Grand Californian Hotel & Spa defines grandeur in every way. Located in the heart of Downtown Disney District, this hotel is just steps away from exceptional dining and entertainment. And with your park ticket, enjoy an exclusive entrance to Disney California Adventure Park. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Grand Californian Hotel
Grand California Hotel
Disney California Hotel
Disneys Grand Californian Hotel
Disney Grand California Hotel
Disney Grand Californian Hotel
Disneyland Grand Californian Hotel
Disneys Anaheim

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