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“Walking Distance to Disneyland”

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Howard Johnson Anaheim Hotel and Water Playground
Ranked #19 of 119 Hotels in Anaheim
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed October 6, 2012

Whenever a management declares a property “rustic” or as in the case of Hojo Anaheim “retro,” a visitor can usually expect a dump in desperate need of renovation.

This hotel is not a dump, but no fairy tale castle either. While there is some pretty nice 50's retro architecture in certain sections of the hotel, the focal point is really on Disneyland across the street—and the hotel delivers a big punch in this regard.

The Disneyland gate is less than a ten minute walk away. It's perfectly reasonable to visit Disneyland in the morning, come to your room for a nap and return in the late afternoon. $4 also buys you an adult all day pass to the local shuttle, but considering that you'll be doing so much walking at the park, the short hike from the hotel to the gate is a drop in the bucket.

Speaking of buckets, the kids' water playground has a giant water bucket that tips over and spills water over heads of screaming children every five minutes. Shaped as a pirate ship, the playground is really nice and also has a hot tub for the parents for chilly winter evenings. The playground is open morning till 10:00pm every day. There is also a nice salt water swimming pool in the other section of the hotel.

Our room was a little worn out but large. The fifth floor offered a view of the Mt. Matterhorn peak across the street and watching the Disneyland fireworks from the balcony was great. I only wish the pillows were a little less filled. After one night on a giant, hard stuffed pillow my neck feels like I propped my head on a cinder block all night.

Hojo Anaheim is a pretty good value when compared with the Disney branded hotels. Certainly a lot cheaper, but not luxurious although fun for kids when the water playground is in operation.

Tips:

There are two or maybe more low rise structures. One of them is right next to the water playground. Don't plan on sleeping before 10:00pm if your windows face the playground. Kids are having fun till late every evening.

One side of the tall building looks at the I-5 freeway. The other side faces Disneyland. Enough said. Make sure to book a room on the highways side if you like watching cars!

The walk to the park gate is very quick. Waiting for the shuttle may take you longer than walking to Disneyland.

There are plenty of dining options around, but although the website claims that Mimi's restaurant is part of the hotel, it is across the street. It doesn't seem related to Howard Johnson at all.

Other than hanging out at the swimming pool, there aren't any options for parents to do at the hotel while kids are asleep. There is a small video arcade on the first floor and the hotel lobby squeezed between a hotel shop and elevators is underwhelming.

Room Tip: One side of the tall building looks at the I-5 freeway. The other side faces Disneyland. Enough said...
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  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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1  Thank lazybum02
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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5,841 - 5,847 of 7,784 reviews

Reviewed October 6, 2012

The hotel is a good value. What makes it is the private pirate themed pool for kids. Just perfect if you have small children. The only downside is they have a very latte check in time of 4pm. This is not the best if your trying to go to the hotel drop your luggage & have an early day at Disney land park. I've been able to stay at Disneyland hotel and check in at 9am.

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
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Review collected in partnership with Howard Johnson
1  Thank Marie F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 4, 2012

our basic stay was very nice, we had one day where room service was missed, i dont really understand why, we took sign off door when leaving and also spoke w housekeeper in the hall to let her know we were gone. also have noticed that the rates are getting higher than they have been past, and are no longer as competitive as they were before

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with Howard Johnson
2  Thank Sheri H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 3, 2012

We had a great 5 night stay here in September. The walk to Disney was easy even with a 1 and 2 year old in tow so the location is fantastic. Easy access to the main highway is also just a couple of hundred yards away.

The rooms were clean and tidy and although they are looking a little dated you can't complain when the rates are very competitive.

The parking is plentiful and free and the hotel felt safe and secure so it made is a good enviroment for families. The kids pool was great fun for all and perfect with temps hitting 108 on a few of the days.

We didn't interact with the staff much but when we did they were always friendly and polite. If you're looking for a great value place to stay close to Disney it doesn't get any better then this.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank coxr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 3, 2012

We stayed for 7 nights in a Queen sized room on the 5th floor looking out towards Disneyland and had 2 rooms to service a family of 5. These rooms weren't interconnecting but there were clean, quiet, good size and comfortable. You can get a great view of the fireworks at Disneyland from the balcony but if we return again we would be happy to stay on the ground floor as you can stand outside and see the fireworks clearly.

Howard Johnson has a family friendly resort feel which was great. The kids loved the pool areas. We also stayed at Camelot Inn for a few nights, just a few doors down, because we couldn't book all the dates we required. Camelot Inn felt more like a motel compared to the Howard Johnson - our family all agreed we would have preferred to stay in a smaller room at the Howard Johnson for the extra days rather than move to a motel.

We were also close to affordable family restaurants and a short 10 minute walk from the main entrance of Disneyland. The only thing we weren't close to were shops to buy some groceries at reasonable prices - best to catch the public bus to Target which is about 3km down Harbour Blvd.

My minor complaints about the Howard Johnson were the free WiFi was flaky in one of our rooms and isn't iPad friendly compared to other hotels we stayed at but it works and was appreciated, as other people have said the bathroom is slightly dated but is clean and acceptable, and we had suspicions that the fridges in the rooms weren't cold enough as our milk for breakfast would go off after a day.

Overall I would highly recommend Howard Johnson to anyone and hope to stay again at this resort one day in the future.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with Howard Johnson
1  Thank Jeff C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 3, 2012

We are a family of 5 , just stayed here for 9 nights.
Would definitely recommend to families with younger or older children.
It's around a 10 min easy stroll to disneyland and DC parks. Mimi's is across the road (love the 4 muffins for $7 deal for morning tea and $25 family meals to go).. Maccas a few mins away.
The pool area is fun for the kids. Balcony view in building 1 queen superior is awesome for fireworks.
Staff very friendly and helpful. Room size is ok.

Probably the only negative is not enough washing machines in building 1.

Apart from that , a great place.
Thanks HoJo.

Room Tip: Try to get a room in building 1 facing the parks. Above 5th floor , we had the 7th.
See more room tips
  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank David P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 2, 2012

Ore family of 5 have just returned from Anaheim staying 8 fabulous nights in a kids suite at ho jos. The room was clean and heaps of space. It was a tad noisy at night due to freeway noise. The staff were helpful and it was such a gr8 location with easy walking distance to Disneyland . Only down side was the lack of no onsite restaurant for breakfast. The on site store was very expensive. However we woulddefinately stay here again. Thanks ho jos.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Ajcmj
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Howard Johnson Anaheim Hotel and Water Playground

Address: 1380 South Harbor Boulevard, Anaheim, CA 92802-2310
Phone Number:
Location: United States > California > Orange County > Anaheim
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Family Hotel in Anaheim
#5 Romantic Hotel in Anaheim
#23 Business Hotel in Anaheim
Price Range: $165 - $253 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Howard Johnson Anaheim Hotel and Water Playground 2.5*
Number of rooms: 303
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Just an 8-minute walk from Disneyland Park, this non-smoking family resort hotel features Castaway Cove - A Watery Pirate Playground! With slides, drench bucket, water canons, jacuzzi, toddler's wading pool and more, Castaway Cove is a great place for your whole family to play together! Also nestled within the lush, park-like grounds is the family friendly Garden Pool! With free parking, fridges and internet- HoJo Anaheim is the perfect choice for your family adventure! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Howard Johnson Plaza Hotel And Water Playground - Anaheim / Disneyland Park
Howard Johnson Anaheim
Howard Johnson Hotel Anaheim California
Anaheim Howard Johnson

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