The Special Touches of the Grand Californian – Part Two

Photo by Charly SHELTON
The antics of Chip and Dale can be found on the wallpaper on walls of the guestrooms of the Grand Californian.


Last week, CV Weekly delved deeply into the background of the famous Grand Californian Hotel at the Disneyland Resort. What on the surface simply seems like a cool hotel, upon closer inspection one learns that it is actually a well planned work of art that guests can walk through. It is a salute to the many California architects and artists who lent their styles to the Arts and Crafts movement in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Improving upon building practices, Disney has made this hotel a more environmentally friendly iteration of the A&C style so as to not needlessly damage the forests that the hotel pays tribute to.

This week we take a closer look at the main experience of a hotel guest ¬– the hotel room.

The Grand Californian guest rooms are equally as impressive as the rest of the hotel, but do not adhere as stringently to the A&C theme.

“What they did with the concept for the new rooms was an Arts and Crafts idea but [the rooms] are going to be modern and a bit nicer. [For example,] Arts and Crafts inspiration was used by taking from the surrounding nature to inspire the renovation. So the orange groves were what was [on the property] before Disneyland was here, so that was the main influence,” said Nicole, Grand Californian tour guide. “We have our orange groves with Chip and Dale playing mischievously around our headboards and there’s some other fun artwork in these rooms. For starters, prints [on the wall] are meant to [represent] crate labels that come on the side of orange crates. [One is] Dominguez Grove Oranges – Dominguez Grove for the Dominguez Family, which was the family who owned the orange grove that Disneyland is built on. And [on the opposite wall] we have Silverlake Citrus brand, as Silverlake is where Disney started his animation work; that was the first studio. And if you look closely at the gentleman standing [in the foreground of the label], it’s a young Walt Disney. Just little Disney touches.”

The rooms are elegant, yet subtle. The deep browns and greens of the lobby give way to creams and pale oranges in the guest rooms and, while it definitely feels like the Grand Californian, the main focus is to create calm relaxation after a long day.

Each room is equipped with a Keurig coffee maker and a mini-fridge and other amenities to make the room feel like home, but perhaps a better version of home. Any standard guest room at the Grand Californian is big enough for a family of five and some rooms have additional daybeds built-in that are perfect kid-sized beds and feature a mural of Bambi and his woodland friends.

However, what stands out are the cute little Disney touches, like Chip and Dale playing on the branches of a tree painted on the headboard of a bed and surrounding wall, the hanging art like the citrus labels, and the traditional A&C style print in the bathroom featuring Chip and Dale stealing oranges from a tree. They feel organic, like something that is meant to be there, like they could be found in the Gamble House in Pasadena and would fit right in. Guests will find a perfect blend of faithfulness to the original source material – the A&C movement – and Disney magic.

In the coming weeks, we will have more on the hotels of the Disneyland and Walt Disney World resorts, as well as the parks of WDW and tips and tricks for visiting theme parks across the country and around the world.

For more information on the Grand Californian and booking availability, visit