- Napa Rose (restaurant)
- Storytellers Café
- White Water Snacks
- Hearthstone Lounge
- Napa Rose Lounge
- Acorn's Gifts and Goods
Theme Park Entry
- The hotel has its own entrance to Disney's California Adventure park, located at Grizzly Peak. The entry is officially only open to guests of the Resort hotels and guests re-entering with handstamps.
Many of the hotel's rooms and features are tributes to various Craftsman-era architects and designers. For instance, two of the Guest Suites, as well as the California Boardroom, pay homage to Frank Lloyd Wright; the Napa Rose restaurant features a rose motif in the glass design which was inspired by Charles Rennie MacKintosh. The Storytellers Cafe features a large tile mural that is a reproduction of an original design by the Gladding McBean Company for a Robin Hood Room in the Wilmington, California. public library.
Designed by architect Peter Dominick of Urban Design Group Inc., it is based on the Arts and Crafts movement of the early 1900s. Despite the large scale of the hotel (750 rooms), the architecture still captures the key elements of the Craftsman style: wide sweeping roofs, projecting beams, exaggerated braces and colors that blend with nature. The exterior evokes the feel of National Park Service lodges of the Western United States, particularly the Ahwahnee Hotel in Yosemite National Park and, to a lesser degree, the Old Faithful Inn in Yellowstone National Park.
The interior design of the hotel also features the Craftsman motif, albeit on a larger scale. Many Craftsman homes have a garden theme. For the Grand Californian, the theme was taken from a garden idea and scaled up so that the garden became a forest.
The reception hall is based on the interior of the Swedenborgian Church in San Francisco, increased in scale to accommodate the large reception desk. The central lobby is a living room done in immense scale with a massive fireplace and vast arching beams overhead, and furnished with comfortable chairs and sofas arranged around small coffee tables. The glowing nook in front of the fireplace features rocking chairs in which to enjoy the fire.
Many of the items found throughout the hotel have been handcrafted by modern practitioners of the Arts and Crafts movement using traditional techniques. Some early Roycroft items are on display in the lobby.
The hotel is an AAA Four Diamond Hotel. Its name is based on Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, its sister resort at the Walt Disney World Resort. The two hotels do not share themes, though, as the Grand Californian is a Craftsman theme, while the Grand Floridian is of a Victorian theme. It does, however, share many thematic elements with the Wilderness Lodge (also designed by Dominick) at the Walt Disney World Resort.
In response to a growing demand for guest accommodations in Anaheim, the Disneyland Resort announced on September 18 2007 an expansion of Disney's Grand Californian Hotel & Spa that will increase accommodations by more than 30 percent and will include the first Disney Vacation Club villas in Anaheim.
The 2.5-acre expansion on the hotel's south side will add more than 200 new hotel rooms and 50 two-bedroom equivalent vacation villas. Those vacation villas, planned to include kitchens, living and dining areas and other home-like amenities, will mark the West Coast debut of Disney Vacation Club, Disney's innovative vacation-ownership program. The new expansion will be known as The Villas at Disney's Grand Californian Hotel & Spa.
Other elements planned for the project include a rooftop deck for viewing fireworks, a new swimming pool and about 300 underground parking spaces. Peter Dominick of 4240, architect for Disney's Grand Californian Hotel & Spa as well as Disney's Wilderness Lodge and Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge at the Walt Disney World Resort in Florida is designing the ambitious expansion. It will reflect the same California Arts & Crafts architecture of the existing hotel, which immerses guests in a turn-of-the-20th-century California experience.
In September 2007, the Disneyland Resort announced an expansion to the hotel that will include the first Disney Vacation Club accommodations on the west coast, and increase the hotel capacity by more than 30% to nearly 1000 rooms. The 2.5-acre expansion will add over 200 hotel rooms and 50 two-bedroom vacation villas, along with a rooftop deck with fireworks views, a new swimming pool, and additional parking spaces. When completed it will become the third largest Disney owned hotel worldwide, up from its current 4th place standing. The project is slated to be complete in 2009.
- At about 3:00 AM PDT on December 28, 2005, a Christmas tree in the main lobby caught fire after electric maintenance workers replaced lights on the tree. All 2,300 guests at the hotel were evacuated within four minutes. The fire was contained by the hotel's sprinkler system and by the quick work of the Anaheim Fire Department. Two guests were treated for minor injuries, one of was a severe headache. All guests were returned to their rooms by 7:00 AM; some were sent to other hotels in the area. The Disneyland Resort announced it would provide all guests of Disney's Grand Californian Hotel a free night's stay.
- Winter, Robert; Vertikoff, Alexander (2004). Craftsman Style, pp 227-233. New York: Harry N. Abrams, Inc. ISBN 0-8109-4336-0.
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