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Grand Californian Hotel Grand Californian Hotel
 
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1600 S. Disneyland Drive, Anaheim
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Average Reviewer Rating: 4.2 out of 54.2 out of 54.2 out of 54.2 out of 54.2 out of 5
Number of Reviews: 67 ( Displaying Reviews: 21 - 30 )
5.0/5.05.0/5.05.0/5.05.0/5.05.0/5.0   01/01/07-01/08/07
Reviewer: IdahoMike Kuna, ID     January 27, 2007
We had a wonderful stay at the Grand Californian! Check in was simple, and the bellhops and the desk clerk were both very friendly. When we got to our room, we found it to be spacious, and very clean. The beds were very comfortable, and the turndown service was excellent. The maids even arranged my children's stuffed animals on the bed each day, and left us chocolates as well. There is a Disney princess bedtime story channel on the tv which is exclusive to the Grand Californian, and that was great in the mornings and evenings to keep the kids entertained. We loved the lobby area, it was gorgeous and inviting. The Christmas tree setup was amazing! Any time we had a question, someone was always able to answer it with a smile. Loved the access to California Adventure, that made things so much easier, especially if we were tired/wet/hungry, we could just run back to our room, and be back in the park in a matter of minutes if we wanted to.
I did get an exceptional rate on this hotel ($119 per night), and would probably not pay over $200, but then again, we spend very little time in our hotel room, we are there more for the parks. All in all, this was a great experience, and I would highly recommend it to anyone.
 
11 out of 11 people found this review helpful
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4.0/5.04.0/5.04.0/5.04.0/5.04.0/5.0   November 13-18, 2006
Reviewer: babytmakes5 Twin Cities, Minnesota     December 01, 2006
We had a very nice stay at the GCH, and would recommend it to anyone wanting a nice hotel close to the parks. My husband and I stayed at the GCH with our three young children, and found the hotel to be a little lacking in regards to child-friendly ammenities. But overall, we enjoyed our stay, and would definitely consider staying there again.

Check-in was a breeze, and we were thrilled when our standard room was upgraded to a park/pool view room. The balcony was a nice ammenity, but as another reviewer pointed out, it would be unsafe for children to be left unattended as it was furnished with a table and two chairs. However, my husband and I did enjoy a glass of wine on that balcony on a couple of nights after the children fell asleep.

The beds were the most comfortable hotel bed we've ever slept on, and my husband can be very picky with beds. The children slept on the bunk bed with the trundle bed. They were comfy and very happy to sleep in such a special bed!

One disappointment we had was the turn-down service. We stayed five nights, and only received the service one time, as we were usually in our room asleep by nine o'clock each night (time difference wiped us out!). Night after night the maid would literally bang on our door (even with the privacy sign out) for turn down service. It was frustrating because she would knock after 9 pm, which I think is way too late. Also, one morning our son's bed was left unmade, which I found disappointing. Not a deal-breaker, but I don't like unmade beds!

Our favorite part of our stay was the grandeur of the lobby and the beautiful furnishings. The lobby fireplace is lovely, and the children especially enjoyed sitting in front of the fireplace in the miniature rocking chairs. The Christmas tree was "magically" put up overnight while we were there, and it was beautiful.

The pool was nice to look at, but because the most shallow part of the main pool is 3-4 feet, we weren't able to take our four year old swimming at all. He is not a strong swimmer, and rather than carry him the entire time in the pool, we chose to just not use it at all after the first time. There is a "baby" pool, but it is really just for infants, and our son wouldn't go near it. Disappointing that a nice hotel like this doesn't have a zero-entry pool that would accomodate all families.

Dining at the hotel was a plus for us. Because we are from the Central time zone, we found ourselves eating dinner quite early, and didn't mind that some restaurants closed early. Whitewater Snacks was a great place for breakfast and lunch. There were plenty of alacarte items, as well as some hot items for breakfast and sandwiches for lunch and dinner. We dined at Storyteller's for breakfast our last morning at GCH, and it was great. Wonderful character interaction, without being too distracting for our children. The breakfast buffet was delicious and we would definitely recommend it.

Another major plus for the GCH is the direct access to DCA. Our two older children loved the Grizzly River Run ride, and it was nice to just walk through the gates and get on the ride. If they got too wet, we could have quickly ran up to our room for a change of clothes. The walk back from DL to the hotel wasn't too bad, but we only have one child in the stroller these days. Our seven and six year olds hardly complained about the walk, even after some very long days.

Overall, the hotel is beautiful, the service was pretty good, and we enjoyed our stay. If we visit DLR in the future (I guarantee we will!), we will consider staying at the GCH again.
 
9 out of 12 people found this review helpful
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3.0/5.03.0/5.03.0/5.03.0/5.03.0/5.0   November 24-26 2006
Reviewer: AliCat Tracy, CA     December 01, 2006
We decided to stay at the Grand on this visit because my husband had never been there and it was a short enough trip that it wouldn't break the bank.

Registration took a very long time even though there were only 3 people ahead of us in line. I'd say we were in the lobby for over half an hour. When checking in, we were told that the room I had reserved, 2 Queens and a daybed, were all gone and could we take a room with just 2 Queens and then get a sleeping bag for my son. I said no, for the $$ we were paying (400/night) I wanted my family all sleeping in beds. I was not happy that we didn't get the room we had reserved. We ended up getting a room with a Queen and the bunk beds even though my kids are too big for them. It was better than them sleeping on the floor. I asked for an upgrade, but wasn't given one. I thought the whole process of checking in was terrible and it wasn't a good start to the trip.

The room was clean but rather small. The bathroom having 2 sinks outside of the toilet and shower was nice. We had no view to speak of, but then again it was a standard room. The room was relatively quiet, we could occassionally hear people in the hallway but not a big deal.

We liked having the entrance to DCA it was very convenient when that park was open. We ate at Storytellers Cafe twice. We had dinner there and only had a 5 minute wait, the food was pretty good, but rather pricey. We also had brunch there and had the buffet and it was also good. The wait was again only about 5-10 minutes. Whitewater snacks is handy for a quick bite and the prices aren't bad.

We probably won't stay at the Grand again unless we can get extremely good rates and we don't have the kids with us. We prefer the Disneyland Hotel, our reservations have always been what we expected and there are no surprises at check in.
 
5 out of 7 people found this review helpful
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2.0/5.02.0/5.02.0/5.02.0/5.02.0/5.0   15 November -19 November 2006
Reviewer: Sylko Sacramento, CA     November 21, 2006
Registration was very nice and easy. There was no line, so we checked in quickly. We paid for a standard room, and were upgraded to a park view room with bunk beds and one queen. The bunk bed also had a trundle so it would accomodate our three children. The view was of Grizzley Peak, and the monorail track and trees. We paid $320/night.

I chose Grand Californian based on the mostly positive reviews, but found that it was not worth the money at all. The room was very quiet (no bathroom fan either), which meant I could literally hear the man in the room next door snoring. This is unacceptable. I could also hear their conversations, which led me to whisper the entire stay at the hotel. Additionally, you could hear every little noise in the hallway. If they are going to do such a poor job with sound proofing the rooms, they should at least have a white noise machine or air filter in the room. As parking is so far away, it wasn't easy to just hop in the car and go buy an air filter, but my husband went and got one after two nights of excrutiating silence (and dealing with all the little noises next door and in the hallway). We had an adjoining room, so this may have made a difference in sound (though we were not with the people in the other room, so the adjoining doors were closed). The room was fairly small for the price I was paying. I requested a refrigerator since I have three children under five, and was told to use the now empty Courtesy Bar, which holds very little. Turn down service is offered every night. The television had no captioning option (probably because the remotes are replacements and had no option to turn the CC on). This was inconvenient because when the kids were asleep, we couldn't turn the TV up. Internet is hard wired, DSL. We picked up a very weak wireless signal, but to use our laptop, we had to use the DSL because the wireless signal kept dropping.

The balcony is very dangerous with children because of the presence of the table and chairs, so we could not open the sliding glass door to ventilate the room either. A device to allow us to crack the door a hair would have been helpful.

The entrance into CA Adv. is nice when the park is open, but as we needed to rent strollers, we still had to exit CA Adv. to rent the strollers which were in the espelande between the parks, but the entrance was handy to have for the many, many trips I took back and forth between parks and room. It is quite a walk to Disneyland Park, and as CA Adv. has very little for children of the ages mine are, we spent most of our time walking to Disneyland.

The general impression of restaurants is that they are inadequate at the hotel. Whitewater Snacks closes at 7pm, so when I needed to get dinner for the children after 7pm, I had to go to Downtown Disney to do this, which meant I couldn't charge it to my room, which was inconvenient for me. The food at Downtown Disney, however, is infinitely better than the overcooked cheeseburgers at Whitewater Snacks. Storyteller's Cafe had an amazingly long wait (45 min to 1 hour) for off-season, so we did not eat there (They accept reservations, so I would say that is needed). The wait was very long despite the fact that several tables were empty. I suspect off season, the hire fewer wait staff.

For the amount of money I spent per night, I wanted more than just a pretty lobby, and nice looking furniture. I've gotten much nicer rooms for much less money at Sheraton and Rennaissance.

The best appeal was being able to charge to my room in the park, but I could have stayed at Paradise Pier or Disneyland Hotel and gotten that perk.

Grand Californian is better suited for adults with no children or with older children. It is not designed for young children at all. I would NOT recommend this hotel to anyone.

In the future, I will try Best Western Park Place Inn, which has a shorter walk to the park, and roomier rooms and is 1/3 the price. With the money I save, I can buy my children souveniers.
 
7 out of 16 people found this review helpful
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4.0/5.04.0/5.04.0/5.04.0/5.04.0/5.0   October 29th thru November 2nd
Reviewer: sleepyjeff Portland, Oregon     November 14, 2006
ARRIVAL: We arrived around 11am and the lobby was packed with people checking out. We got in line for the one and only window marked for registration behind a few others and waited for about 10 minutes before being told we needed to get in the extra long single line with all of the people who were checking out. No big deal but would have been nice to be informed of this before waiting those 10 minutes. The line went pretty quick and about a half hour after arrving we had completed check in(but we would have to wait another 4 hours for our rooms). They took our luggage and gave us keys and a number to call later to find out what rooms those keys were for.

ROOMS: Compact and clean looking(except upon close inspection under the top bunk bed mattress which revealed large food crumbs and even uneaten nuts and candy). The rest of the room was very clean however. We had a "standard view" room but could see parts of Disneys California Adventure Park if we leaned a little over our third floor balcony. The non-leaning view was of a littered roof top which I only blame the hotel partly for...it's not all their fault that some people are pigs. Shower had fair/poor pressure and TV was slow to respond to remote commands. Beds were on the firm side. Fridge was actually an Honor Bar with a small area for personal use. Room was quiet and the curtains kept out all light when closed.

STAFF: Excellent. Bellmen were prompt and always asked if there was anything they could do to make our stay more magical. Maids did an excellent job and even grantd some of our odder requests. Room service was also exceptional.

POOL: The pool area contains two pretty good sized pools plus a couple of jacuzzis and a kiddie pool. The main pool has a nice slide that twists around a redwood tree. Pools were a little on the cold side for this time of year.

PARK ACCESS: The hotel is virtually inside Disneys California Adventure Park and has its' own entrance. Disneyland, however, is quite a walk to the front gates. This walk also includes a series of lines. First you must wait in line to have your bags checked then, if you don't already have a ticket you need to wait in a line to purchase them and finally a line to enter the gates themselves. The hotel is actually less convenient to Disneyland then some of those on Harbor blvd which can cost over $200 less than the Grand Californian.

Overall we really like this Hotel but the price(over $300 per night) seems a tad high for rooms that are not really all that much better than what can be found at a Holiday Inn.
 
6 out of 6 people found this review helpful
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5.0/5.05.0/5.05.0/5.05.0/5.05.0/5.0   10/15 - 10/19/06
Reviewer: itsagas Eugene, Oregon     November 09, 2006
The Grand Californian was WONDERFUL! We utilized the 4th Night Free special and decided on a Standard Downtown Disney View room. It was fun for all of us to experience the activity & music when we left the sliding glass door open, but once the door was closed it was peaceful & quiet.

Our daughters are 11, 6 & our youngest was turning 5 during our visit. We truly believe that when travelling with children we must prepare for the unexpected and do our best to ROLL WITH IT**!

For example, when we checked in at 5pm one of our rooms wasn't ready and the "Queen/Bunk Bed" room we requested was not available. **The friendly CM offered our group a complimentary character meal. We were traveling w/ additional family members and ALL of us came down with a stomach virus before, during and after our stay ** It was great to be close to the action so that whoever was up for going to the parks could and whoever didn't could quickly get back to the hotel room.

Our rooms were immaculate, the hotel is gorgeous, swimming pools fun, room service fabulous and cast members very hospitable (our 5 year old had a wonderful birthday). Our family favorite was the turn-down service with the most comfortable beds & clean linens around.

We know that vacations are NEVER perfect, but this hotel provided our family with exceptional customer service at every opportunity. We now plan on staying at the Grand Californian every time.
 
2 out of 3 people found this review helpful
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5.0/5.05.0/5.05.0/5.05.0/5.05.0/5.0   February 2004
Reviewer: gabrielle2106 Australia     July 13, 2006
This hotel is amazing. Its breathtaking decor, superior staff and beautiful cuisine. I cannot say how wonderful our stay was. The room was beautiful, nice balcony to sit on. The beds were gorgeous and the lovely feather pillows were a delight. The maids do an amazing job, the room is like brand new each day. The concierge went out of his way to help us (when our hire car didn't arrive from Hertz) and the porters are the friendliest there are. We arrived early but they soon found a room for us to use and freshen up in. As i say, 5 planets isn't enough for the hotel.
 
9 out of 9 people found this review helpful
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3.0/5.03.0/5.03.0/5.03.0/5.03.0/5.0   07/05/04-07/08/04
Reviewer: kiki L.A. California     May 01, 2006
This was an o.k. hotel. It was not what I expected it to be. We checked in at 9:00 am, but out room was not ready until 4 or 5 pm. The rooms were very clean and had alot of ammenities, and the entrance to DCA was a blessing, however the walk from DL to the hotel was a bit long, especially if you are walking with six children at night and one of them is sleep.
 
6 out of 20 people found this review helpful
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5.0/5.05.0/5.05.0/5.05.0/5.05.0/5.0   March 26 - March 30, 2006
Reviewer: ComfyCody Salem, OR     April 02, 2006
Amazing hotel , I am now spoiled for life! We checked in at 10:30 AM, and not only was our room ready, but we got a free upgrade from a standard to a pool/theme park view. Looking out our window we had a great view of the pool area, and the paradise pier section of California Adventure. Breathtaking. The first thing we noticed was the very clean room. Everything was perfect, including port a crib and robes in the closet. We liked the tall beds, and the sheets and pillows were nicer than we have at home! Unfortunately my husband got sick our first day there. The staff was thoughtful and helpful in their care. They cleaned the room quickly and quietly while he was in bed, and the front desk took care of other needs, and offered to call a dr if needed. The access to California Adventure couldn't be beat, and onsite dining was wonderful. We participated in the Grand Quest scavenger hunt, and were named the Grand Family of the Day! This was a very special experience, and we were allowed to join the families in concierge for pajama story time. We had one day during our stay where the weather was horrible, it was raining buckets - and very hard to enjoy the parks. When we entered the lobby area on our way to Downtown Disney, we were delighted to see Chip, Dale, Koda and Kenai! They were in the lobby area for a couple of hours, having fun playing with children and just being silly. It was a highlight of our trip. The Grand Californian is not a cheap hotel by any means, but I certainly feel like it was worth it!
 
22 out of 22 people found this review helpful
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5.0/5.05.0/5.05.0/5.05.0/5.05.0/5.0   9/6 - 9/11/05
Reviewer: azurborg Sacramento, Ca     December 29, 2005
I wouldn't normally write a review but we just went back right before Thanksgiving and stayed in a Good Neighbor hotel, which prompted me to write about our stay in September at the Grand Californian. We have stayed there now two times (once a year) and I have to say it is worth the money. The service is comprable to any 4 star hotel (courteous, fairly responsive and willing to help out). In a huge hotel like this if you are not paying for concierge you cannot expect immediate response (however they still respond quickly). The rooms are nice, but nothing extravagent. They are comporable to a 3-4 star hotel room (actually the room we stayed in at the Good Neighbor hotel was nicer). So you may say why stay here? Well like in real estate it is location..location..location. You cannot get closer to the park, and depending on your room location you may find a cooridor / stairwell (like we did) that leads you almost right to the gate. This alone is reason to stay there. However, there is more, be sure to take advantage of the activities that they offer for free. I registerd the night before to learn how to draw mickey mouse. Not only did I draw mickey mouse but they had mickey autograph it and provided me with a certificate. Next time I told my wife I will go to more of the activities. Also, the lobby is beautiful and be sure to go down to the lobby during story time, which is a real treat for the kids. If you want the nicest room in all of the area then don't stay here. If you want a lot of activities on-site, easy access to the park, and you don't plan on doing much else other than to go to Disneyland while in Anaheim then this is the place for you. Yes it is expensive, but ask my wife how many times I was kicking myself for not spending the extra money when we went back in November (the $70 more a night would have been worth it, especially with a 2 yr old). I will be back at the Grand in 2006.
 
38 out of 39 people found this review helpful
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