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  1. #1

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    The new (Tokyo) Disneyland Hotel

    I am eager to see how the massive renovation will turn the drab Disneyland Hotel into a worthy centerpiece. It's far too industrial. After viewing the progress of the massive, new, gorgeous Tokyo Disneyland Hotel, it shows how bad the Disneyland and Paradise Pier Hotels need to go. The Grand Californian screams Disney-wonderful hotel, but the others are way down on the list. I wish they would tear down the two hotels and build a massive, new, grand palace like the latest in Tokyo. Check out the pictures:

    http://www.jtcent.com/resort/hottdl/index.html

    Tokyo has the best Disney hotels in my opinion. The MiraCosta and Ambassador are Disney at it's finest. I hope Anaheim will join the list in the future. The Grand Californian is definately up there on the list, but the other two drag the resort back down.

    What are all of your opinions on the Disney hotels here in Anaheim? Some of the best? Some of the worst? What would you like to see built? In your opinions, which resort has the best hotels? Which are they?

  2. #2

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    Re: The new (Tokyo) Disneyland Hotel

    They do things so much better at Tokyo Disney and hotels are just another one of those things. Disney executives would do well to visit TDR and take some notes.

    I wouldn't say the Anaheim hotels are bad. They do their job. While I have problems with where the Grand Californian is placed (I think that space should have been devoted to the second gate) it's very much a Disney-calibur hotel. But the other ones are just old and drab.

  3. #3

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    Re: The new (Tokyo) Disneyland Hotel

    As long as the keep the prices down, I'd love to see something like this in Anaheim. But I really think the prices will soar, and totally screw the average family vacation over.

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    Re: The new (Tokyo) Disneyland Hotel

    I agree that the Grand Californian is the only true Disney quality hotel at the Disneyland Resort, theming wise anyways. While the Disneyland and Paradise Pier Hotels are deluxe quality, they lack theming and the wonderful immersion of most of the other Disney hotels.

    In my opinion, the Tokyo Disney Resort has the best Disney hotels. The Hotel MiraCosta is by far the best and I've stayed in just about every deluxe Disney hotel around the world.

    I have no doubt that the Tokyo Disneyland Hotel will be the best of the "Disneyland Hotels (Grand Floridian included)" in terms of quality. It does not look like it will beat the Hotel MiraCosta in terms of beauty, theming, detail, location, and views though (no other Disney hotel does). Being a fan of the Victorian themed hotels, I think the Tokyo Disneyland Hotel will rank just behind the Hotel MiraCosta on my list of favorite Disney hotels. And then there is the Disney Ambassador Hotel. I've not stayed in this hotel personally, but I've had a look around the lobby and other parts of the hotel. It's definitely a very charming and elegant hotel. Very pretty too. In short, I absolutely love all the Disney hotels at the Tokyo Disney Resort because they feature 3 of my favorite themes; 1930's Art Deco, Old World Italian, and Victorian.
    ~ Tokyo DisneySea’s Arabian Coast at nighttime ~


  5. #5

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    Re: The new (Tokyo) Disneyland Hotel

    The great thing about the Grand Californian is that you can't really find any style hotel like it (not even the Wilderness Lodge, puleez). It's like a California Craftsman house on MAJOR steroids. I love it's dark woods, grand lobby, and rustic greens. The Mira Coast rivals hotels like the Venetian and dare I say, Bellagio. The setting is without a doubt the best of them all (even better than Bellagio's Vegas strip). The Grand Californian sits inside the park but it doesn't offer nearly as good the views or setting. Hong Kong's Hollywood is very fun and Disney-styled. Not as refined as the Ambassador, but it retains much more Disney whimsy. The Disneyland Hotel in Paris is nothing short of grand and beautiful on the outside, but the interior could use some work. The Animal Kingdom Lodge is up there on beauty, uniqueness, and incredible setting. Even the Hong Kong Disneyland Hotel is something to grace in. I love Disney Hotels and think they know darn well how to design a good one. I hope that comes out in the future of Anaheim's hotels. The two leftovers don't feel Disney to me at all- at least from the outside.

  6. #6

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    Re: The new (Tokyo) Disneyland Hotel

    Quote Originally Posted by DisneyMickey View Post
    The great thing about the Grand Californian is that you can't really find any style hotel like it (not even the Wilderness Lodge, puleez). It's like a California Craftsman house on MAJOR steroids. I love it's dark woods, grand lobby, and rustic greens. The Mira Coast rivals hotels like the Venetian and dare I say, Bellagio. The setting is without a doubt the best of them all (even better than Bellagio's Vegas strip). The Grand Californian sits inside the park but it doesn't offer nearly as good the views or setting. Hong Kong's Hollywood is very fun and Disney-styled. Not as refined as the Ambassador, but it retains much more Disney whimsy. The Disneyland Hotel in Paris is nothing short of grand and beautiful on the outside, but the interior could use some work. The Animal Kingdom Lodge is up there on beauty, uniqueness, and incredible setting. Even the Hong Kong Disneyland Hotel is something to grace in. I love Disney Hotels and think they know darn well how to design a good one. I hope that comes out in the future of Anaheim's hotels. The two leftovers don't feel Disney to me at all- at least from the outside.
    Wow. I share many similar opinions. I think the Grand Californian is more luxurious and prettier than the Wilderness Lodge, at least on the inside anyways. The Wilderness Lodge looks much better on the outside than the Grand Californian, especially the surrounding grounds.

    I've stayed at the Bellagio and Venetian and think that the Hotel MiraCosta beats both in terms of beauty and opulence. And like you mentioned, its fantastic location in Tokyo DisneySea's Mediterranean Harbor is unparalled and offers unbeatable views. The Hotel MiraCosta is definitely the best Disney hotel, bar none.

    I agree about the Ambassador Hotel being more upscale and elegant than the Hollywood Hotel, with the latter being more focused on whimsy and fun. The Hong Kong Disneyland Hotel is another great Disney hotel. While I think the exterior of the Grand Floridian looks grander, I love the interior of the Hong Kong Disneyland Hotel more. I like the elevator lifts in the lobby and all the inlaid marble. It's more magical than the Grand Floridian in my opinion.

    Regarding the Disneyland Hotel in Paris, I do not think it's as great a hotel as either the Grand Floridian or the Hong Kong Disneyland Hotel. The exterior is very pretty with all the pinks and creams, but the rooms are very bland. Its lobby was also not as grand or pretty as the other Disney Victorian themed hotels in my opinion.
    ~ Tokyo DisneySea’s Arabian Coast at nighttime ~


  7. #7

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    Re: The new (Tokyo) Disneyland Hotel

    The Grand Californian is hopelessly over-rated. It looks okay from 50 yards away, but get up close and you'll see that it's really not that much different from a Hilton with a budget conscious Craftsman theme.

    The details at the Grand Californian have all gone missing, and the CM's don't help things by serving up a dollop of attitude as if their hotel is God's gift to the huddled masses. Attention GCH CM's: You can drop the attitude, you lack the social standing to get away with it, and your hotel ain't that great. The Montage or St. Regis you are not, so please don't pretend you have those kinds of resources to offer your guests. Your one-trick-pony consists of easy theme park access and Mickey Mouse pancakes in the coffee shop. That's really all you have.

    The Grand Californian's stamped and dyed concrete paving trying to pretend to be granite, commercial metal doorframes and windowframes instead of custom woodwork, cheap cut glass pretending to be custom leaded glass, etc., etc. all let the "Craftsman" theme weaken itself to just a themed mega-hotel that is more McMansion than legit piece of craftsmanship.

    Arts & Crafts Movement indeed. Ha! How about Home Depot Movement instead?

    The Mira Costa, on the other hand, has some very legit craftsmanship on display at every turn. Not a strip of stamped concrete anywhere to be found at the Mira Costa; instead they have gorgeous granite and marble in abundance. Hard carved woodwork and real leaded glass in the lobby, restaurants, and pretty much every public space I wandered through.

    I didn't go to the Ambassador, but for a Moderate hotel it looks great from the pictures I've seen. And knowing how seriously the Japanese take their customer service, I'm sure the Ambassador's level of Moderate priced customer service makes the Grand Californian's Concierge level look like an airport Holiday Inn. Don't make me tell the story of the GCH Concierge Lounge hostess who cheerily told me the lounge was out of coffee at 10:00AM and that if I wanted a cup of coffee on my way to the park I could stop at La Brea Bakery. And she told me that with a big cheesy smile, as if the smile would make up for her complete lack of ingenuity, her mismanagement, and her paper-thin hospitality skills. Don't even make me tell that GCH Concierge Lounge story again!

    And where do you even start with the ancient and charmless Disneyland Hotel? Yes, it has oodles of nostalgia, but it's time should have been up 10 years ago when they began serious Resort expansion. I was disapointed to learn they are going through another big rehab of that hotel, but the towers and basic layout will still remain. The Disneyland Hotel is a blocky, 1960's Hilton with Tinkerbell bedspreads and Sherman Brothers Muzak playing in the elevators. It should be imploded and replaced with a new deluxe hotel worthy of the name "Disneyland Hotel". See Paris or Tokyo or Hong Kong for perfect examples of what that hotel should really be like.

    As for the Paradise Pier Hotel? Please. It's a Sheraton with a statue of Goofy in the lobby. The only thing the Paradise Pier has to offer is close proximity to Downtown Disney and a decent Japanese restaurant off the lobby. The rest of that hotel is bland, 1980's corporate Sheraton. Just because they put down some carpet with seashells on it doesn't make it themed, or worth the prices they charge. I honestly don't know how Disney gets away with it.
    Last edited by TP2000; 09-10-2007 at 11:50 PM.

  8. #8

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    Re: The new (Tokyo) Disneyland Hotel

    I don't think the Ambassador Hotel is a moderate. For the rates they charge (upwards of $350 normally), it's definitely a deluxe hotel. It looks better than several Disney hotels of the deluxe range, and its atmosphere is very upscale. The restaurants are all very elegant, as are the public spaces. Everything is beautifully themed and detailed and simply screams quality. I think quality wise, it beats many other deluxe Disney hotels.
    ~ Tokyo DisneySea’s Arabian Coast at nighttime ~


  9. #9

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    Re: The new (Tokyo) Disneyland Hotel

    Ah, okay. I just considered it a moderate hotel because it was clearly a step cheaper than the Mira Costa, and was not on the monorail line.

    Where will the Disneyland Hotel fall in the Tokyo heirarchy? At the same level as Mira Costa? Or a notch below?

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    Re: The new (Tokyo) Disneyland Hotel

    Quote Originally Posted by TP2000 View Post
    Ah, okay. I just considered it a moderate hotel because it was clearly a step cheaper than the Mira Costa, and was not on the monorail line.

    Where will the Disneyland Hotel fall in the Tokyo heirarchy? At the same level as Mira Costa? Or a notch below?
    I see what you mean. The MiraCosta is indeed a huge step up from the Ambassador Hotel (and every other Disney hotel). I would rate the MiraCosta as a super-deluxe (only Disney hotel to reach this category for me), while rating the Ambassador Hotel a deluxe. The Tokyo Disneyland Hotel should fall somewhere between the two in my opinion. While not as opulent as the MiraCosta, it's definitely grander (not to mention more expensive) than the Ambassador Hotel. I expect it to charge rates of $400+. Not quite as expensive as the MiraCosta, but not as cheap as the rates for the Ambassador Hotel.
    ~ Tokyo DisneySea’s Arabian Coast at nighttime ~


  11. #11

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    Re: The new (Tokyo) Disneyland Hotel

    Quote Originally Posted by TP2000 View Post
    The Grand Californian is hopelessly over-rated. It looks okay from 50 yards away, but get up close and you'll see that it's really not that much different from a Hilton with a budget conscious Craftsman theme.
    You might be right. I've never actually gone inside.

  12. #12

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    Re: The new (Tokyo) Disneyland Hotel

    Quote Originally Posted by idreamofjeani View Post
    As long as the keep the prices down, I'd love to see something like this in Anaheim. But I really think the prices will soar, and totally screw the average family vacation over.
    Exactly, it's not like there are any places for budget-conscious families to stay in the Disneyland area, right?

  13. #13

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    Re: The new (Tokyo) Disneyland Hotel

    Quote Originally Posted by TP2000 View Post
    And where do you even start with the ancient and charmless Disneyland Hotel? Yes, it has oodles of nostalgia, but it's time should have been up 10 years ago when they began serious Resort expansion. I was disapointed to learn they are going through another big rehab of that hotel, but the towers and basic layout will still remain. The Disneyland Hotel is a blocky, 1960's Hilton with Tinkerbell bedspreads and Sherman Brothers Muzak playing in the elevators. It should be imploded and replaced with a new deluxe hotel worthy of the name "Disneyland Hotel". See Paris or Tokyo or Hong Kong for perfect examples of what that hotel should really be like.

    As for the Paradise Pier Hotel? Please. It's a Sheraton with a statue of Goofy in the lobby. The only thing the Paradise Pier has to offer is close proximity to Downtown Disney and a decent Japanese restaurant off the lobby. The rest of that hotel is bland, 1980's corporate Sheraton. Just because they put down some carpet with seashells on it doesn't make it themed, or worth the prices they charge. I honestly don't know how Disney gets away with it.
    Ouch. That is the cold truth though.

  14. #14

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    Re: The new (Tokyo) Disneyland Hotel

    Now that I've thoroughly trashed Disney's Grand Californian Hotel and Day Spa, does anyone want to see a really well done 21st century Craftsman hotel in SoCal? Go check out The Lodge At Torrey Pines. It's stunning, in both location and facility, located on a bluff above the Pacific in between Del Mar and La Jolla. http://www.thelodgeattorreypines.com

    The place is gorgeous. And the detailing and quality of the Craftsman atmosphere are infinitely more impressive than the Home Depot version at the Grand Californian. You won't find any stamped concrete or metal windowframes or cut glass or plastic pretending to be wood beams or fiberglass pretending to be shake shingles at The Lodge At Torrey Pines. Only the real thing works for them there; granite, stone, hand carved wood, custom fabrics, etc.

    I've yet to stay overnight in a room, but I've dined repeatedly at their signature restaurant Valentien, brunched at their patio grill restaurant, and spent some fantastic afternoons at their Day Spa. And let me tell you, the spa there puts the puny afterthought of a spa at the GCH to shame.

    Of course the service is flawless, and clearly about three steps above the amateurish CM's at the GCH. The folks at The Lodge are real pros when it comes to gracious hospitality, not kids who transferred from StorybookLand. The Lodge's valet men in Scottish kilts and full Scotsman regalia really put the rowdy frat boys in polyester knickers parking cars at the GCH to shame, and it only gets better from the porte cochere on in.

    You don't get a view of the Sun Wheel or the backside of Mulholland Madness at The Lodge, but the views of the blufftop golf course and the rocky ocean coastline of La Jolla make up for that a bit. Think of The Lodge as a Craftsman version of The Montage in Laguna, and you're headed in the right direction.

    I hate to sound like an infomercial here, but The Lodge At Torrey Pines is living proof that you can build a modern 21st century hotel from scratch, give it a thorough Craftsman early 20th century theme without making a single trip to Home Depot, and pull it all off perfectly in Southern California.

    The first time I visited The Lodge At Torrey Pines, I slapped my forehead and thought "This is what the Grand Californian should be like!".
    Last edited by TP2000; 09-11-2007 at 07:01 PM.

  15. #15

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    Re: The new (Tokyo) Disneyland Hotel

    Quote Originally Posted by TP2000 View Post
    The Grand Californian is hopelessly over-rated. It looks okay from 50 yards away, but get up close and you'll see that it's really not that much different from a Hilton with a budget conscious Craftsman theme.

    The details at the Grand Californian have all gone missing, and the CM's don't help things by serving up a dollop of attitude as if their hotel is God's gift to the huddled masses. Attention GCH CM's: You can drop the attitude, you lack the social standing to get away with it, and your hotel ain't that great. The Montage or St. Regis you are not, so please don't pretend you have those kinds of resources to offer your guests. Your one-trick-pony consists of easy theme park access and Mickey Mouse pancakes in the coffee shop. That's really all you have.

    The Grand Californian's stamped and dyed concrete paving trying to pretend to be granite, commercial metal doorframes and windowframes instead of custom woodwork, cheap cut glass pretending to be custom leaded glass, etc., etc. all let the "Craftsman" theme weaken itself to just a themed mega-hotel that is more McMansion than legit piece of craftsmanship.

    Arts & Crafts Movement indeed. Ha! How about Home Depot Movement instead?

    The Mira Costa, on the other hand, has some very legit craftsmanship on display at every turn. Not a strip of stamped concrete anywhere to be found at the Mira Costa; instead they have gorgeous granite and marble in abundance. Hard carved woodwork and real leaded glass in the lobby, restaurants, and pretty much every public space I wandered through.

    I didn't go to the Ambassador, but for a Moderate hotel it looks great from the pictures I've seen. And knowing how seriously the Japanese take their customer service, I'm sure the Ambassador's level of Moderate priced customer service makes the Grand Californian's Concierge level look like an airport Holiday Inn. Don't make me tell the story of the GCH Concierge Lounge hostess who cheerily told me the lounge was out of coffee at 10:00AM and that if I wanted a cup of coffee on my way to the park I could stop at La Brea Bakery. And she told me that with a big cheesy smile, as if the smile would make up for her complete lack of ingenuity, her mismanagement, and her paper-thin hospitality skills. Don't even make me tell that GCH Concierge Lounge story again!

    And where do you even start with the ancient and charmless Disneyland Hotel? Yes, it has oodles of nostalgia, but it's time should have been up 10 years ago when they began serious Resort expansion. I was disapointed to learn they are going through another big rehab of that hotel, but the towers and basic layout will still remain. The Disneyland Hotel is a blocky, 1960's Hilton with Tinkerbell bedspreads and Sherman Brothers Muzak playing in the elevators. It should be imploded and replaced with a new deluxe hotel worthy of the name "Disneyland Hotel". See Paris or Tokyo or Hong Kong for perfect examples of what that hotel should really be like.

    As for the Paradise Pier Hotel? Please. It's a Sheraton with a statue of Goofy in the lobby. The only thing the Paradise Pier has to offer is close proximity to Downtown Disney and a decent Japanese restaurant off the lobby. The rest of that hotel is bland, 1980's corporate Sheraton. Just because they put down some carpet with seashells on it doesn't make it themed, or worth the prices they charge. I honestly don't know how Disney gets away with it.
    While I don't share the same contempt for the Grand Californian Hotel as you do, I have always thought the place is over rated. It's nice, sure, but I've never thought it was as nice as everybody likes to say it is. Granted, I haven't actually stayed at the Hotel, but I have walked through the grounds and lobby many times. And I haven't been too terribly impressed with stories I've heard or the pictures I've of the Grand Californian rooms.

    And you're absolutely spot-on about the Paradise Pier Hotel. I stayed there with some friends on the July 17th 2005 weekend, and I thought the price was outrageous for such an underwhelming product. The rooms were disappointing, the "theme" throughout the place was pathetic, and the Hotel itself showed its age miserably.

    And that Japanese restaurant is awful. Overpriced sushi, most of which isn't even common rolls - its just partial rolls. Like the avacado roll, that's what, $8? Seriously? And $12 for a flippin' California Roll? PLEASE! That restaurant is an overpriced joke.

    And the Disneyland Hotel is underwhelming, too. The place reeks of nostalgia and history, sure... but it looks like its seen better days, too. I don't know what to do with it.. I feel like it has so much history that it should remain... like bulldozing the Disneyland Hotel and building a new, bigger hotel would be like bulldozing Main Street and building a bigger, better new WDW-style Main Street or something... But I don't know... something does need to be done...

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