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  • Writer's pictureTara Wilson

Hotel Guide: The Villas at Disneyland Hotel

The newest addition to the California Disneyland Resort has officially opened, and I can't wait to tell you all about it! Here's everything you need to know about the brand new Villas at Disneyland Hotel!


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In September 2023, the Villas in Disneyland Hotel's new Discovery Tower officially welcomed its first guests, becoming the fourth tower to make up the Disneyland Hotel and the second Disney Vacation Club property at the Disneyland resort (the Grand Californian being the first). For those that have never been to the Disneyland Hotel resort, the resort includes the Fantasy Tower (where the lobby & gift shops are located), Adventure Tower, Frontier Tower, and now the new Discovery Tower, or The Villas.


The three towers that originally made up the Disneyland Hotel are decorated in an ode to the classic Fantasia Sorceror Mickey (rich royal navy hues and white stars glittered throughout, with Mickey gloves serving as lighting sconces in the bathroom), whereas the new Villas, in contrast, add a bright splash of color to the resort with decor celebrating other Disney animation classics.


Even though The Villas at Disneyland Hotel is technically a DVC property, luckily you don't have to be a DVC member to book a stay - and with over 300 rooms spanning across twelve floors, this is a property you'll definitely want to check out on your next trip to the Disneyland Resort!


Navigating this Blog Post:


Welcome area in Villas at Disneyland Resort
Welcome Area in the new Villas at Disneyland Hotel




Check In & Check Out


The check in & check out process at Disney hotels is quick, convenient, and effortless - especially with the Disneyland app (Disneyworld app if you're in Florida). The app is free to download, and you're able to link all of your info in one place, including your park tickets and your hotel reservation.


Cute Teacup Seating in the Disneyland Hotel Lobby

We were able to check in five days before our arrival since our reservation was linked in the app, which was great for several reasons: we could let them know what time we planned on arriving the next day, and we could partake in Early Entry into the theme park and not have to worry about leaving to check in that morning. Though your room isn't guaranteed to be ready before 3pm, if they know you're arriving earlier, they can try to accommodate you. I believe we got an alert that our room was ready by 12pm on our most recent visit.


In order to complete the check in through the app, you'll have to put a card on file for the deposit - after this, you can bypass the lobby when your room is ready, and head straight to your room with a digital key on the app. If you prefer a physical key or would rather put a card on file in person, then it's better to go to the lobby to check in instead.


Once you're ready to head to your room, the Villas at the Discovery Tower will be easy to find - look for the modern wood/gray tower splashed with rainbow colors! The other three towers of the hotel are solid blue.


Parking


Self parking for the Disneyland Hotel is pretty easy to find. If you're coming from LA and take the I-5 S and get off on the Disneyland Drive/Ball Road exit, just continue down Disneyland Drive toward the resort, make a right on Magic Way, and then you'll see a sign for the Disneyland Hotel on your left at a four-way stop.


Once you drive up to the gate and receive your parking ticket, you'll see the hotel up ahead and a sign for self-parking to your right. It is a little bit of a walk from the parking lot, so depending on your luggage and who is in your party, you may want to drive up to the front desk and unload the car before you go and park.


Self parking for registered hotel guests is $40/night plus tax per vehicle, and valet is $70/night plus tax per vehicle. If you're a DVC member and book the reservation through points, then the parking fee is waived. There are a limited number of electric vehicle charging stations - for more information on that, click here!



Duo Studio - Preferred View


The Duo Studio rooms are very quaint, and decorated with The Jungle Book theme - which I found fitting, since these rooms are perfect for those that need the absolute "bare necessities." (See what I did there?)


Duo Studio Garden at the Villas at Disneyland Hotel
Duo Studio Garden at the Villas at Disneyland Hotel

These rooms feel pretty small - our first impression when we walked in was that it felt like a room on a cruise ship. They come with a queen sized pull-down Murphy bed and sleep up to two adults and one infant.



The Duo Studio rooms come in three booking options: Standard view (views of street, parking area, or gardens), Preferred view (views of the pool), and Garden (separate from the tower, provide easier access to the pool, comes with a patio or balcony). We had the pleasure of staying in both a Preferred and Standard view - the Preferred was nice because we not only had a spacious balcony, which was a nice surprise, but we had a great view of the new Palette pool!


Balcony that came with Duo Studio preferred view room at Disneyland Hotel
Balcony - Duo Studio Preferred View

The bathroom in the Duo Studio room is beautiful, with designs on the mirrors that light up, a spacious walk-in shower with a rainfall shower head, and the usual marine-scented Disney bath amenities.



The Duo Studio rooms came with a 55" flat screen tv, toaster, microwave, mini fridge, some dishes, a Keurig and an assortment of Keurig pods. Total honesty - the Keurig in several of our rooms needed to be cleaned out, and I personally wouldn't use them unless they were cleaned out first. During our several stays, rather than use the Keurig in our rooms, we decided to walk to the Starbucks in Downtown Disney.



You can find the bedding for the Murphy bed in the closet, as well as a steam iron.



We were bummed that our rooms during our stay in January didn't come with Disneyland Hotel robes - however, during our most recent stay in April, our robes were hanging in the closet! Yay!


Disneyland Hotel Robes at the Villas at Disneyland Resort
Disneyland Hotel robes are so cozy and soft!

Our Duo Studio room - Standard View, in contrast, did not come with a balcony or view of the pool, but I believe is the most affordable option at the Villas, making it a more cost-effective choice for those who don't plan on spending much time in the room.


Deluxe Studio - Standard View


The Deluxe Studio rooms come decorated in several themes, and ours during this stay was Princess & the Frog! The Deluxe Studio rooms are definitely more spacious than the Duo Studios, and feel more like standard hotel rooms. They come with a queen bed as well as a queen-sized Murphy bed, and sleep up to four adults and one infant.





The Deluxe Studio came with all of the same amenities as the Duo Studio, including a microwave, mini fridge and Keurig, but with a lot more space and room for storage.



The bathroom of the Deluxe Studio was pretty much identical in design as the bathroom in the Duo Studio, however, our Deluxe Studio came with a tub as opposed to the large walk-in shower that was in the Duo Studio.



We also loved how the headboard lit up - which was a pretty cool feature not found in the Duo Studio.


Headboard light up feature in deluxe studio at Villas at Disneyland Hotel

Even though we had booked a Deluxe Studio - Standard View, we ended up getting another great view of the pool!


View of the new Palette Pool & Steamboat Willie splash pad from our room!

Besides the Duo and Deluxe Studio rooms, there are also one, two, and three bedroom villas offered, however, I believe that these bigger villas may be harder for non-DVC members to book, as the first availability goes towards DVC members.


Room Service


Just like the Grand Californian, the Villas at the Disneyland Hotel offers room service! This was exciting news for us, since the various Disney hotels we stayed at in Florida didn't offer in-room dining, and sometimes the dining options at the resort were limited.


For breakfast, they have a similar system to one you'd find on a cruise - you can mark your selections directly on the menu, mark the time frame you'd like your breakfast delivered, and all you have to do is hang it outside your door before 11pm the night before you'd like the breakfast delivered.


There is a $3 delivery charge, 19.5% service charge, and local sales tax, and the breakfast will automatically be charged to your room account.



Breakfast for in-room dining is available between 6am-11am, and dinner is available from 5pm-midnight. Along with entrees, there are desserts, cocktails, beer, wine, and other refreshments also available on the menu.




Other Dining Options


Palm Breeze Bar

As far as restaurants & bars go, there is a new pool-side bar on the first floor of the Villas, Palm Breeze Bar, which you can access through the Discovery Tower's lobby. The Palm Breeze Bar is open for lunch from 11am - 3:55pm, and then 4pm - 9pm for dinner. To check out its lunch menu, click here, and to check out its dinner menu, click here! We haven't ordered food from here yet, but I definitely am hoping to be back soon to try the jumbo lump crab roll and spicy crisp chicken sandwich!


Palm Breeze Bar at the Villas at Disneyland Hotel
Entrance to the new Palm Breeze Bar at the Villas

Just a few short steps from the entrance to the Villas, you will find both Trader Sam's Enchanted Tiki Bar and Tangaroa Terrace Tropical Bar & Grill. Both Trader Sam's and Tangaroa Terrace are Polynesian-themed and have essentially the same menu, but offer differing guest experiences.



Tangaroa Terrace Tropical Bar & Grill

Tangaroa Terrace has both a sit-down option for service as well as items you can quickly grab and go. It's open from 7am - 11am for breakfast, and then 11am - 10pm for lunch and dinner. As its name suggests, Tangaroa Terrace is outdoor, with covered seating lit by tiki torches. Essentially everything you can order inside Trader Sam's, you can order at Tangaroa Terrace. For Tangaroa Terrace's breakfast menu, click here, and for their lunch and dinner menu, click here.


Trader Sam's Enchanted Tiki Bar

Inside look at Trader Sam's Enchanted Tiki Bar
Inside Trader Sam's Enchanted Tiki Bar

Trader Sam's, on the other hand, is an intimate and fun tiki bar offering indoor seating. Though they don't offer breakfast or grab and go items, the draw to Trader Sam's is that some of the cocktails on their menu come with fun "special effects" when they're ordered, making your time inside the bar unique & fun. The seating inside is very limited, however, so if you're set on wanting to check out Trader Sam's during your stay, it's convenient to try and lock in a reservation in advance.** If there is a long wait to get in, there is a time limit they enforce so that more folks can get the chance to dine inside. Also - those under 21 are able to enjoy Trader Sam's before 8pm, however, after that it is restricted to those 21 and over. For Trader Sam's menu, click here!


**Though it's encouraged to get a reservation, when we dined at Trader Sam's on a weekday in January and then again on a weekday in April, we walked up to the host and put our name on the waitlist and were quoted an hour wait both times. However, we were able to get sat within 15 minutes after that both times. It's possible that they were slow nights, but just thought that was helpful to mention - just because they're not taking reservations doesn't mean you won't be able to dine there!


Goofy's Kitchen

For character dining, you'll definitely want to check out Goofy's Kitchen. They have buffet-style dining for breakfast (7am - 10:30am), brunch (11am - 1pm), and dinner (4pm - 9pm), with a whole variety of specialty cocktails, mocktails, beer, cider, and wine offered as well. Advanced reservations are highly recommended for Goofy's Kitchen. To check out the different offerings for breakfast, brunch, and dinner, click here!


The Coffee House

Next to Goofy's Kitchen is The Coffee House, where you can stop by and pick up a quick pastry or specialty coffee to go. I'm not going to lie, I find the coffee here to be very weak-tasting. That's why we usually go to the Starbucks Reserve location in Downtown Disney for coffee. However, if you need something quick, this is where you can get coffee at the Disneyland Hotel resort. To check out its menu, click here.



Drink Menu at The Coffee House at the Disneyland Resort
Drink Menu at The Coffee House

Amenities


At the Villas specifically, there is the new Palette Pool and Steamboat Willie Splash Pad right next to the Palm Breeze Bar. There's also a brand new, state of the art fitness center on the first floor of the Villas. If you're staying at the Villas, you'll also of course have access to the resort's other amenities, like the two other retro-themed pools, two whirlpool spas, two monorail waterslides, and poolside cabanas. To see more information on the poolside cabanas, click here!



new steamboat willie splash pad at the disneyland hotel
New Steamboat Willie Splash Pad at night

Disneyland Hotel vs. The Villas


Now for the big question - which one should you stay at: the Disneyland Hotel or The Villas? The answer, of course, comes down to personal preference. One of the main differences between the two will be the decor. As you can see below, the Disneyland Hotel rooms (on the left) are going to have more of a classic, vintage Disney theme, whereas the Villas (on the right) will be more bright and colorful, with themes based on different Disney classics.



The rooms in the new Villas at Disneyland Hotel will also be more updated, of course, since the hotel is brand new. In contrast, the last major refurbishments done on the Disneyland Hotel were back around 2010/11, and I believe again during the pandemic closures.


Another cute perk of the Disneyland Hotel rooms is that the headboards have light up fireworks and play the song, "When You Wish Upon a Star." In the Deluxe Studio rooms in The Villas, the entire headboard lights up (as previously shown in this post), but it's not quite the same effect, in my opinion.

The headboards at the Disneyland Hotel light up and play "When You Wish Upon a Star."

The bathroom in our rooms at The Villas were brighter and more spacious, which was nice. In contrast, the bathroom in our Disneyland Hotel room was darker and less spacious, but had cute Mickey gloves for light sconces, and the toilet had its own door, so multiple people could make use of the bathroom and sink at the same time, which might be useful for bigger parties (Shown below: Disneyland Hotel bathroom on left, Villas on right).



Another thing to keep in mind - the rooms at The Villas came with kitchenettes, whereas the standard rooms at the Disneyland Hotel do not. I believe they come with a mini fridge and coffee maker, but they do not have a kitchen sink or microwave like the rooms at The Villas do.


Otherwise, as far as amenities go, the Disneyland Hotel resort is pretty walkable, and it's easy to access the pools and fitness center from any of the towers on the resort, so that staying at a certain tower shouldn't affect your decision much - but if you prefer to be close to the fitness center, it's located in The Villas.


Overview


There are many upsides to staying at a Disneyland Resort hotel if you're planning a visit, and the Villas at Disneyland Hotel is an excellent new option! Not only are the Villas brand new, so all of the rooms and their amenities will be modern with fun new themes, but you also have easy access to the new Palm Breeze Bar as well as the new Palette Pool and fitness center down on the first floor.


The Grand Californian is still the closest hotel to the parks, however, the Disneyland Hotel (and the Villas) is the next closest hotel and you're still right on the Disney resort, which means the parks and Downtown Disney are just a short walk away. It's still a splurge, however, the rooms will most likely not be as expensive as a stay in the Grand Californian, and you can still partake in Early Entry! Early Entry is one of my absolute favorite perks that come with staying in a Disney hotel.


If the Disneyland hotels are a bit out of your price range but you'd still like to stay close to the magic, my other favorite place to stay is the new Westin Anaheim resort - it's within walking distance (as opposed to most hotels that are over a mile away), and still luxurious without being quite as expensive as the resort hotels. To read more about our stay at the Westin, click here!


However, there are many perks to staying at a Disneyland Resort hotel, and if you're willing to splurge, this new property on the resort is definitely worth checking out. With its beautiful new rooms and state-of-the-art amenities, The Villas at Disneyland Hotel is a great option to consider when planning your next vacation to Disney!


To quickly compare rates, I've input the hotel into these two links: Hotels.com and Expedia, to help you find the best deal! You can also fill out the form below!




Helpful Hotel Facts


Check In: 3pm (you can technically check in up to five days before if your reservation is linked in the Disneyland app, but rooms aren't guaranteed to be ready before 3pm)


Check Out: 11am


Pets: Disneyland Resort hotels don't allow pets - however, they do allow service animals. For more info, click here for Disney's Guest Information phone number.


Discount & Offers: for a full list of applicable discounts & offers, click here!


Resort Fee: none! The resort fee is included in the rate for the room.


In-Room Celebrations: Click here to see what gifts you can pre-order to have waiting for you in your hotel room!


Next Day Package Delivery:  Instead of carrying around your Disney purchases all day, have them delivered to your hotel instead! You just shop & pay at the store, and they'll deliver it to your hotel the next day! Click here for more information!


Smoking: the Disneyland Hotel is strictly a non-smoking hotel, however there are designated areas outside where you are free to smoke.


Airport Transportation: Unfortunately, unlike the Disney World Resort hotels in Florida, there are no complimentary airport shuttles for the Disney Resort hotels in California. However, besides ride share and public transportation, click here for some shuttle services Disney recommends.


Theme Park Transportation: The theme parks are within walking distance from the Disneyland Hotel, so shuttles can't get you closer to the park entrances than you already are by being at the hotel. However, there is a monorail stop in Downtown Disney that goes directly into Tomorrowland in Disneyland.


Have you gotten to stay at one of the Disneyland Resort hotels? Let me know in the comments which is your favorite! I'd love to hear what you think!

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