Disneyland has a magic about it that’s hard to explain unless you’ve visited. We call it the Disney bubble and we do everything we can to ensure our Disney bubble doesn’t burst for as long as possible. But once you leave the park it’s hard to maintain that Disney magic. The reason Disneyland is so special is the attention to detail, the effervescent cast members (staff) and an atmosphere which is unique to the parks. Last year we discovered by staying at a Disney hotel we could stay immersed in the Disney bubble for a little longer.
Checking into Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel we immediately felt Disney’s embrace and what’s even better, the accessible accommodation is pretty awesome too.
ACCESSIBLE ACCOMMODATION DISNEY’S PARADISE PIER HOTEL
After a flight from New York to Los Angeles, an afternoon doing a studio tour and a bumper to bumper ride in a taxi on congested Los Angeles freeways, this room was a welcome sight. I couldn’t wait to sink into the comfy bed and welcomed the spacious room.
Everything about Disney’s Paradise Pier hotel celebrates the heyday of California’s beachfront boardwalks. We were delight by the relaxed beach vibe, from the playful Disney beach themed prints in our room to the kids theatre in the foyer.
After busy Disneyland days it’s so important to have a comfortable bed and a place to relax and our room did not disappoint.
My bed delivered in the luxurious comfort category and AJ was happy to have her own pull out sofa bed to stretch out in at night.
For those looking at transferring from a wheelchair to the bed, the height of the bed is 70cm and there’s no room for a hoist under the king sized bed.
It’s always interesting to see what ignites joy in a stay for kids and teens and the simple addition of a Toy Story Ball made AJ’s day. She loved the inclusion but was sad to hear it had to stay on our check out.
The accessible room we stayed in has the option of an interconnecting room which is fantastic for families or larger groups travelling together.
We did find the room was a long way from the lift which meant it was quiet, but for anyone self-propelling in a wheelchair you may wish to see if there’s an accessible room closer to the lift.
The bathroom in our accessible room at Disney’s Paradise Pier was spacious, functional and full of Disney detail which is what we love about all things Disney.
It’s equipped with lever taps, grab rails throughout, lowered amenities and an accessible bathroom sink.
A large shower seat is fitted in the step-free shower recess with a shower head which is removable but not height adjustable.
Bathroom measurements are as follows – entry door to bathroom 85cm wide, toilet height to pan 41.5cm, toilet height to seat 44cm and shower bench is 86cm wide.
BEACH COMBER CLUB
Booking a hotel stay with access to a lounge, or in this case the Beach Comber Club, can provide added value to a stay.
The Beach Comber club offers a Continental Breakfast daily from 6.30am to 1030 with assorted fresh pastries, cereal, fruit and juices. Given we had early entry to the parks we grabbed some pastries to eat on the go as did many families.
Snacks are offered from 11am-4.30pm which we missed given we were on a mission to do as much as possible in the parks.
A Moment in Paradise offers select appetizers, complimentary wine and beer 5pm-7pm which seemed popular with families looking to wind down after a busy day.
And AJ’s favourite, Sweet Endings which as the name suggests is a buffet of sweet treats and drinks from 7pm-8pm.
AJ also liked visiting the Beach Comber Club to borrow DVD’s, Disney ones of course, to watch on the player in our room with some popcorn bought in the park.
As much as a stay at Disneyland is about visiting the parks, on a hot summer days, or when you need to take a break, it’s fantastic to have good pools with access available.
The American’s with Disability Act (ADA) means hotels in the US are well equipped for guests with a disability including pool access. Something that’s still quite rare in Australia.
Not only is there a pool chair into the pool but also into the “hot tub” or spa. It’s so fantastic to see that everyone is well catered for when they are looking for a relaxing swim during their time at Disneyland.
Life guards are on duty to ensure everyone stays safe and life vests are provided for guest use.
Now there’s no shortage of shopping opportunities in the park and around the park but just in case you forgot a gift for that special person back home there’s a store in the hotel. I tend to regret not buying certain things after the fact so I was glad the lobby store had a Disney pin I had missed in the park.
If the kids haven’t had enough of Mickey, they can watch cartoons in the beach themed theatre.
ACCESS THROUGHOUT THE HOTEL
Access is good in all common areas of the hotel including the cafe and the PCH Grill where we enjoyed a character dining breakfast as a family on our very first visit.
Clear signage highlights the best route for easy access around the hotel. Ramp access is provided where necessary.
Accessible outdoor car parking is available on site.
ADVANTAGES OF STAYING AT A DISNEY HOTEL
Although staying at a Disney hotel keeps you immersed in the Disney experience, perhaps the greatest advantage is the extra magic hour it allows you in the parks. This is an additional hour which means the park only has guests of the Disney hotels in the parks at that time. AJ and I only had two days in the parks so this was invaluable to us. One morning we managed to get on five of the rides before the gates had opened to non-Disney guests.
Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel also has a great view of the fireworks from the pool sundeck. For children who find it hard to stay in the park that late, or for anyone with noise sensitivities, this is a good way of enjoying the fireworks from afar without missing out with the music and audio broadcast to the deck.
When planning your Disneyland holiday, I suggest, if you can stretch your travel budget that little bit further, immerse yourself in the Disney experience for the period of your stay by staying in one of the Disney hotels.
You can read more about Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel on the Disney website.
We stayed as guests of Disney but as I’m sure you can see, it was easy to writing a glowing review given the facilities offered.