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What Would a New DVC Tower at Disneyland Hotel Be Like?

Fresh off of the announcement of Disney Vacation Club’s proposed new tower at the Disneyland Hotel, Amy and I found ourselves in Anaheim, California, walking around trying to get a feel for this new resort. With many obstacles and hurdles to overcome before the tower becomes a reality, we couldn’t help but also think of some concerns about its effect on Disneyland as well. Here are a few questions we had as we spent the afternoon walking around the property:

Balcony or No Balcony?

Anyone who has been following along on DVC Fan for a while should know that I have a thing for balconies. The truth is, I feel these are one of the many things that set Disney Vacation Club resorts apart from other properties. So in exploring Disneyland Hotel, a quick concern I had was whether this new tower would provide a balcony for each room. Based on what we saw and some quick researching over on DISboards, Disneyland Hotel currently only has a handful of balconies available within the Frontier Tower. Will they continue this and break from the trend of DVC balconies, or will this new tower have a different design than the rest of Disneyland Hotel?

Disneyland Hotel
As seen in this photo, the current design of the towers at Disneyland Hotel does not feature balconies, which are a staple of DVC properties.

Does Trader Sam Need a Bigger Tiki Bar?

I’m going to answer this question with a no quickly, but I believe the theory behind it is worth considering. One of the unique charms of Trader Sam’s Enchanted Tiki Bar is its intimate atmosphere, and thus regardless of expansion, should be left alone. However, it does raise the question of what other amenities we will see with the new tower. New dining options? A DVC Marketplace style store? In our quick review of the resort, the proposed addition of 350 rooms would add approximately 35% more capacity to the resort, taking it to a total of around 1,340 rooms. This influx of guests will definitely have an impact on the resort’s current dining options, and it will be interesting to see how Disney plans to supplement this with the new tower.  

Trader Sam's Enchanted Tiki Bar - Disneyland Hotel
Will Trader Sam’s be able to manage the crowds that a new DVC tower will bring to Disneyland Hotel?

Tomorrow Tower?

Throughout the short history of the Disneyland Hotel, the resort has already seen its towers renamed and rebranded. My assumption is we will not see this occur again, so it raises the question and yet obvious answer of what the new DVC tower will be named. With the three current towers named after the lands of Disneyland (Frontierland, Adventureland, and Fantasyland), will we see the tower of tomorrow be called Tomorrow Tower?

Theme Park View?

As Amy and I walked the grounds of the Disneyland Hotel, we got a feel for the proposed location and layout of the new DVC tower. Based on what we know thus far, the new building will replace an existing laundry facility and lawn area on the West side of the property. Although standing in this location cannot get us a real feel for what it will be like to be 12-stories in the air, one sure thing is that there is no clear line of sight for a theme-park-view room. With the other towers and other buildings blocking many sightlines, there is only a small section that may have a view into Disney’s California Adventure. To me, this sounds like a perfect reason to add a rooftop restaurant or bar to provide that excellent vantage point above everything else.

An Easy Trip to the Parks

One aspect of Disneyland Hotel that I found convenient was its proximity to Downtown Disney. A quick walk can get you a great meal, entertainment, and quickly into the parks. I use the word ‘quickly’ with caution, however, because even on a relatively quiet afternoon, we found ourselves waiting a long time to get through security walking back from the resort. Maybe it was just a fluke, but this may need to be another consideration if Disney plans on more guests entering via this security checkpoint.  

Disneyland Hotel Security
Long security lines coming from Disneyland Hotel into Downtown Disney.

I’m curious to hear your thoughts! What do you think Disney and DVC need to be considering with this new Disneyland Hotel tower? Are there any must-haves that should be included? Share in the comments below, and be sure to stay tuned to The DIS and DVC Fan as more information becomes available about this resort!

Paul Krieger

Amy and I are new Orlando, Florida residents where we live with our dogs Odie the greyhound and Hermès the Spanish galgo. We are DVC owners at Animal Kingdom Lodge, BoardWalk Villas, Grand Californian, Grand Floridian, and Polynesian, Disney World Annual Passholders, and love educating Disney Vacation Club members on how to both use and maximize the value of their DVC points!

5 thoughts on “What Would a New DVC Tower at Disneyland Hotel Be Like?

  • Another “Hotel” to help make Park congestion worse! When will it end? I understand the need to increase the bottom line but, at what cost? I love Disney, have since my parents took me there shortly after I was born in August of 55 but, as the crowds increase, the Park aesthetics decrease. The enjoyment level decreases to a point where it becomes an exercise in endurance. Trying to make reservations for dining will only become more difficult. Eventually, the only ones that will be able to “enjoy” anything Disney, will be those that “pay” for the privilege.

    • As a DVC member I see this as adding overall value to my membership. It may lower the resale value of my VGC points, but I don’t ever plan on selling them. Huge additions like Galaxy’s Edge increase congestion, not DVC towers.

  • Growing up we went to Disneyland once a year. We only live 45 miles away and never stayed at the Disneyland Hotel. Every trip we’d hit that DH Monorail stop and I’d be awed. Wishing that we’d stay there someday. In my mid 30s when my oldest child was 2 we started going to Disneyland more. We made my dream come true and started staying regularly at the DH. Within a few years the VGC were built and we got 200 points soon after. And as nice as the VGC are and how convenient it is in relationship to the parks we’ve always preferred the Disneyland Hotel. I do miss the Never Pool and balconies, but the refurbished rooms and new pool more than make up for it. The balconies were lost to gain square footage in the rooms, and a suicide prior to refurbishment might have added to their removal.

    With a DVC tower on the horizon for the Disneyland Hotel it has me thinking about adding on or just selling my VGC points and strictly having DH points when the time comes. Trader Sam’s and the adjoining quick service is fantastic, but the indoor bar, however quaint, is much too small. The outside area, day or night is the best of it’s kind in any of the three hotels. Goofy’s Kitchen is the best character meal on property. Steakhouse 55 is amazing.

    I’d like to see a tower with a nice quick service of the bottom floor with a unique retail store. Another pool or water element would be needed. And a penthouse lounge on the top floor. When we started going regularly the parking lot on top of the convention center was self parking. Now it’s valet only. With the number of rooms parking is barely adequate. With 350 more rooms parking will need to be addressed.

    Lastly, I’d ask for perks, a boatload of DVC perks…

  • Great thoughts Paul. No theme park view and no balcony would take this tower off my list. More Bay Lake Tower points, anyone?

  • Does anyone more familiar than I am with Anaheim land use processes have a guess as to the earliest date construction might start?

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