Look Inside Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel

Look inside Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel and book at the lowest price possible! “The Grand” is one of the most sought after hotels in all of the Disneyland Resort area, and soon you’ll see why. My most recent stay at the Grand Californian Hotel: July 2023.Disneys Grand Californian Hotel

I have reviewed nearly 30 Disneyland area hotels and stayed at most of them on my own dime. My first overnight stay at the Grand Californian was provided by Disneyland Resort. And since then I’ve stay multiple nights, spent days lounging in my cabana by the pool and dined at every restaurant on the property. I’ve got lots of opinions and as usual, they’re all my own. 


Disneys Grand Californian Hotel


Let’s start with my first opinion. I absolutely love Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa. Anyone who stepped inside the lobby of this beautiful building likely feels the same way.

Many of the hotel rooms offer unbeatable views of Disney California Adventure Park or Downtown Disney District, truly giving you front row access to Disneyland Resort.

Here’s everything you need to know about Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel, along with details you don’t want to miss.Disneyland Vacation Deals Here

Grand Californian Hotel Quick Details

Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa, dubbed as the first Disney resort hotel to be located inside a theme park.

This hotel and spa is a AAA Four-Diamond Hotel featuring 948 rooms which capture the spirit of early California through both design and architecture. Disney’s Grand Californian is also part of the Disney Vacation Club.

Grand Californian check in


Featuring 948 rooms with the spirit of California’s arts and crafts era in the 20th century, many accommodations look out over California Adventure Park or Downtown Disney.

Suites and villas are available as well as access to the Fountain Pool, Redwood Pool and Mickey Mouse-shaped children’s pool.


Grand Californian entrance


Onsite, guests will enjoy relaxing grounds and terrace areas, the Tenaya Spa and fine dining. Dining at the hotel includes:

Grand Californian Hotel Lobby

A stunning, dark-wood lobby greets you as you enter at the Grand Californian for the first time.

It’s filled with comfy leather chairs and couches, pint size rocking chairs for little ones to relax in (and Disney cartoons showing nearby), in a beautiful grand piano with live pianists playing throughout the day. 


Grand Californian Lobby kid chairs


Another centerpiece of the Grand Californian lobby is its open design. Each level of guest rooms overlooks the lobby and the expansive fireplace, bringing warmth and comfort on those cold winter days.

During the summer you’ll find the air conditioner blasting as many look to the Grand Californian lobby for cool retreat.

Grand Californian Hotel Parking

If you’re staying at the grand Californian Hotel, expect to pay the $40 nightly fee for self-parking, with valet service at $70 per night, per vehicle.

Grand Californian Hotel parking deal: use self-parking and save $30 each night over valet. Make it even more convenient by dropping off your party and luggage at the main entrance while you drive to self-parking. The other adult can get a spot in line to check in, saving you a bit more time as well.


Disneyland Hotel Parking


Remember, if you’re dining at select hotel table-service restaurants, and not staying at the hotel, you will receive limited free parking.

If you are visiting the theme parks only, do not park in the Grand Californian Hotel parking. Read more details on parking at Disneyland Resort here.

Grand Californian Hotel Exclusive Access

It’s true, Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel is connected to Disney California Adventure Park. Guests who are staying at the Grand Californian can use the exclusive entrance into California Adventure with valid theme park admission. 


DCA entrace from Grand


How do I get into California Adventure from Grand Californian Hotel? Use your hotel room key to show attendants at the park entry point in the morning. Your entire party may enter the park with you (with one hotel room key) with valid theme park admissions. 

Can guests of the Disneyland Hotel use the Grand Californian entrance to California Adventure? No, this entrance is only available for Grand Californian Hotel guests with valid theme park admission in the morning. Later in the afternoon, Disney cast members may allow anyone with valid theme park admission to use the entrance as well.


Grand Californian Hotel key


Grand Californian Hotel exclusive park hours deal: Guest staying at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa also get access to Early Entry!

Early Entry is a huge perk of staying on-site at Disneyland Resort and is offered each day of your visit, with valid theme park admission. Read all about Early Entry here. While this deal isn’t exactly a discount, it does get you more time in the parks and maximizes your cost-per-hour ratio. 


Grand Californian bathroom shower


Disney California Adventure bonus access! Don’t forget, guests staying at Disney properties can sign up for an early morning power walk through the park before it even opens! I’ve done this twice and it is so much fun.

Grand Californian Hotel Rooms

The rooms at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa are exactly what you are looking for in a high-end hotel experience. Updated and refreshed, clean and sparkling, comfortable and convenient. 


Grand Californian room view


Grand Californian Hotel room deal: Book your stay and tickets in a package through my partner with a low-price guarantee. You’ll get access to discount Disneyland tickets, discount Grand Californian Hotel rooms and an additional savings.

Remember, if you find a better deal elsewhere, they will match it (including any additional perks like gift cards offered occasionally through merchants like Costco). Disneyland Vacation Deals Here

Grand Californian Room descriptions:

  • Standard View has views of Disneyland Drive, rooftop or parking Area. Available in several configurations sleeping up to 5 adults. 1 King and 1 Twin sleeper or 2 Queens or 2 Queens and 1 Day bed or 1 King and 1 Day bed and 1 Twin sleeper chair or 2 Queens and 1 Twin sleeper. Most rooms with shower only, no tub. We had this view once and it was perfectly fine.


Grand Californian Room view


  • Woods Courtyard-View is the type of room that overlooks the courtyard area where the Disneyland Monorail runs through or near the pool. Note that the Monorail does not stop in the hotel. Sleeps up to 5 adults.  Queen or 2 Queens and 1 Day bed or 1 King and 1 Day bed and 1 Twin sleeper chair or 1 King and 1 Twin sleeper chair. Most rooms with shower only, no tub.


Grand californian woods courtyard view


  • Deluxe Partial View with partial views of Disney California Adventure or Downtown Disney District, sleeps up to 5 adults. 2 Queens or 2 Queens and 1 Day bed or 1 King and 1 Twin sleeper chair or 1 King and 1 Day bed and 1 Twin sleeper chair.  Most rooms with shower only, no tub.


Disney Grand room


  • Downtown Disney View overlooks the Downtown Disney District with tons of shopping and dining options. See my list for the best places to eat at Downtown Disney. This room sleeps up to 5 adults. 2 Queens or 2 Queens and 1 Day bed or 1 King and 1 Twin sleeper chair or 1 King and 1 Day bed and 1 Twin sleeper chair.  Most rooms with shower only, no tub.
  • Premium View (this room type view is featured in the photo above) offers views of the pool or Disney California Adventure, sleeps up to 5 adults with 2 Queens or 2 Queens and 1 Day bed or 1 King and 1 Twin sleeper chair.  Most rooms with shower only, no tub.


Inside Grand Californian room

Grand Californian Club Level Hotel Rooms

Club-level service is a step above, and Disney’s Grand Californian doesn’t disappoint. If it’s in your budget, club-level rooms offer the following amenities during your stay:

  • Continental breakfast from 6:30 AM to 10:30 AM
  • Afternoon tea from 11:30 AM to 3:30 PM
  • Wine and cheese reception from 4:30 PM to 7:00 PM
  • Cookies and desserts from 8:00 PM to 10:00 PM
  • Selection of DVDs available for checkout
  • Access to The Veranda for a quiet getaway or fireworks viewing, located on the sixth floor
  • Personal assistance from the Concierge Staff

Book your stay at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa now.

Grand Californian Hotel Suites


Grand Californian Disneyland


If you’re ready to have access to Disneyland Resort in style, Grand Californian suites are just the ticket.

You can choose from a variety of suites including 1 bedroom (sleeps up to 6), 2 bedroom (sleeps up to 11), 3 bedroom (sleeps up to 12) and signature themed suites (sleeps up to 12) which are aptly named Arroyo, El Capitan, Arcadia and Mount Whitney. 

Grand Californian Hotel Villas

Vacation Villas: The first Disney Vacation Club Villas on the West Coast opened at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa in 2009. These two-bedroom villas, include kitchens, living and dining areas and other amenities to make you feel at home. You’ll need a Disney Vacation Club membership, or rent points from a member (direct or third party) to stay in these villas. 

My friend Jordan takes us on a tour of the Disney Vacation Club one bedroom villa here

Grand Californian Hotel Pool

There are three pools: Fountain, Redwood and Mariposa; two whirlpool spas; and one Mickey Mouse-shaped children’s pool. And of course a water slide! Please note you may be asked to show your room key and/or reservation to access the pool where you’ll receive a wristband for each guest. 


Craftsman outdoor


Guests may also choose to rent poolside cabanas. Find out about the extensive list of amenities like laundry, business center, shopping and more here


Grand Californian Pool sunrise


There’s tons of lounge chairs and umbrellas throughout the pool area, but you’ll want to arrive early if you plan on spending the entire day at the pool. I also noticed the pool was much less crowded during the evening hours. 

Grand Californian Hotel Pool Cabanas

We went all in and booked a full day cabana at the Grand Californian Hotel, which you can schedule 60 days in advance. The cabana was perfect for our family and we stayed there until the very last minute, as we tend to do!


Our cabana was reserved for our check out day. We slept in a bit, packed up, checked bags with valet and spent the day lounging. There’s even private showers in the restrooms so we got cleaned up before our drive home. 

If you’re planning an entire day by the pool (and you totally should!), I suggest getting a cabana on the day you check in or out, to maximize the fun and magic. 

Your Grand Californian Hotel pool cabana comes stocked with:

  • 12×12 private spacious area.
  • Plenty of seating with a  large sectional couch, table with chairs and two loungers.
  • Fresh towels, robes, sunglasses cleaner and a small bottle of sunscreen and/or sanitizer.
  • Shade and sun under your private cabana and two large umbrellas out front.
  • Complimentary fruit tray and bottles of water upon arrival. 
  • Dedicated cast members for towel refreshing or food and drink orders.
  • Mini fridge, TV, safe and ceiling fan. 

How much does a Grand Californian cabana cost?

Poolside cabanas at the Grand Californian Hotel are offered for a full day (9:30am-6:00pm) and for a half day (9:30am-1:30pm or 2:00pm-6:00pm).  You can book at 60 days out by calling (714) 635-2300. Prices vary.

Grand Californian Hotel Spa

Now reopened an all  new experience as Tenaya Stone Spa!


Tenaya Sap Disneyland


After touring Disneyland Resort, you’re going to need a little “me time” and the Tenaya Stone Spa is the perfect solution. From facials, to massages, acupressure, and wraps—you can find exactly what you need to relax here. 


Disneyland Spa


If you’re going to splurge for a visit to Tenaya Stone Spa, I say get an appointment early and enjoy something more luxurious that you won’t normally have access to. 

Grand Californian Hotel Dining

There are so many places to grab something to eat or drink at the Grand Californian. We ate a ton of meals at Craftsman and I’m not even mad about it!


Drinks Craftsman Disneyland


Need a drink and time to unwind? Head to Craftsman Bar where you can sit poolside and enjoy an extensive drink menu and food.


Chicken Wings Disneyland


Reservations are recommended, or you can walk up for grab and go to the Craftsman Grill side. They even have easy grocery type items to keep in your room for snack and easy breakfasts. But I prefer this breakfast . . . 



Waffles Craftsman Disneyland


Fine dining is available at Napa Rose, along with the Princess dining experience for breakfast


Princess dining place setting


Storytellers Café is one of my favorite buffets for dinner, or stop by for breakfast or brunch to dine with characters like Mickey Mouse.


Storytellers breakfast family


I also love popping into Hearthstone Lounge since they don’t accept reservations, it’s still a sorta hidden gem located in the lobby of the Grand. Go there for drinks or a meal.Disneyland Vacation Deals Here

There are so many reasons to choose The Grand Californian for your next Disneyland vacation. Even though it’s priced higher than most area hotels, the comfort, service and exclusive Disney perks are just some of the reasons why everyone should stay here at least once. Tell us, have you stayed at The Grand?

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By Jessica Sanders

Recognized authority on all things Disneyland Resort. Offering dynamic planning strategies and the latest theme park information since 2013. Jessica's insights have been featured on Yahoo! News, InStyle, The Washington Post, and many others.

6 thoughts on “Look Inside Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel

  • Kristin

    Just stayed here this last week. We had a updated room, woods/courtyard view. We loved the atmosphere, nothing beats Disney magic of staying onsite, and little Disney details all over, surprise character dancing in the lobby. The rooms were very clean, and beds were comfy. My only compliant would be the rooms seemed on the smaller size(even though they fit 5) and although beautiful lobby and stuff the rooms just don’t have the big wow factor, however-they still had a little Disney charm to them/ and getting the extra magic hour was so worth staying onsite. One thing I would recommend that I read somewhere before we went is not using the private entrance into California adventure in the mornings. The line is very slow moving/ on our first day we used normal entrance (we lined up 20 min before extra hour) we were like 5 people back from front of line and got in quicker then on our 3rd morning where we decided to try the entrance(we lined up 50 min early and still had 10 families in front of us, If you have kids it’s hard to stand in line in such a small area for almost an hour. There were families wrapped around this small hallway, if I had been in the back it would have taken forever to get through the line. But it was nice to have the entrance in the afternoons and evenings.

    • Kristin, that is spot on. Not a “wow I am at a Disney hotel” type of look but the details are adorable. I completely agree with your tip about not using that entry point first thing in the morning. Head over to those main gates! Then use the entry/exit for other times during the day. Thank you so much for sharing your review.

  • Megan Allen

    If you stay at the Grand Californian, is there any breakfast included in with your stay? Or do you have to pay to eat there.

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