With Disneyland prepping for its 60th Anniversary Diamond Celebration, fans will be clambering to visit the theme park, rekindle old memories, and take in the new shows and attractions. However, with only three Disney-owned hotels on property, many guests will look for hotels off Disneyland property. You can’t get much closer than the Carousel Inn and Suites – almost directly across the street from the pedestrian entrance to the Disneyland Resort theme parks. We stayed at the Carousel Inn and Suites during the inaugural Star Wars Half Marathon Weekend; continue reading for our photos and review of this boutique hotel in Anaheim, California.
Location and Lobby
Sitting across from the Disneyland Resort, it’s probably no surprise the Carousel Inn and Suites is a family friendly hotel. The draw of the Carousel Inn and Suites is certainly location, and it may even be closer to the entrance to the Disneyland Park than some of the official Disneyland hotels themselves. The Carousel Inn has a small footprint on S. Harbor Boulevard, and stretches deep into the property towards the highway. Note, all parking at the hotel is valet and costs an additional fee/night (currently $14/night). Guests enter the hotel and are greeted by a small lobby with friendly front desk staff, a sitting area, and modest gift shop.
I would consider the Carousel Inn and Suites a budget or moderate level property with exterior room entrances. [Similar to Disney’s Port Orleans Resort at Walt Disney World.] We had a tower room with two queen beds, and had plenty of space for our party of three. The room was also equipped with a small refrigerator, microwave, and Keurig coffee maker.
One clever feature was a sliding floor-to-ceiling shutter door separating the sleeping area from the sink and bathroom. This came in particularly handy when I was dressing at 4 a.m. to get to the starting line of the Star Wars Half Marathon, and did not want to wake my family… yet.
The bathroom had a single sink with granite counter top, and a separate door to close off the shower and toilet area.
The queen size beds were plush and comfortable, and we had no trouble sleeping at night. [Although that also may have had to do with the 3 a.m. wake-up calls for the runDisney races.]
The Carousel Inn and Suites does not offer breakfast, but there are plenty of places to grab a bite close by including Mimi’s Café (delicious and very reasonably priced) IHOP, and McDonald’s. Of course, there are plenty of places to grab breakfast inside the Disneyland and Disney California Adventure theme parks as well.
The Pizza Press is a small restaurant on Carousel Inn and Suites’ property, open from 10 a.m. to midnight (and later). While we didn’t get a chance to try the restaurant, we poked around inside, and saw that the menu featured custom, handmade pizza (no surprise) and craft beer. We planned on eating at the Pizza Press for dinner on Friday night, but found a long wait (perhaps a good sign) and decided to go elsewhere. It didn’t occur to us until later that we could have had the pizza delivered to our room, or eaten it on the hotel’s rooftop terrace.
Amenities, Pool, and Recreation
As more of a moderate/budget hotel, you are not going to find the same level of amenities as you might of a full destination resort (such as the Disneyland Hotel or Disney’s Grand Californian). However, the Carousel Inn and Suites makes the most of its valuable piece of property. On the top floor is a meeting space overlooking Disneyland Park with views of Space Mountain, the Matterhorn, and you can watch the Monorail pass by. The wrap around windows also make this a great spot to gather and watch the evening fireworks.
A small workout room contains the standard fitness equipment such as an exercise bike, treadmill, etc.
And the outdoor rooftop pool also features panoramic views of Disney California Adventure, Disneyland, and the mountains in the distance, and is a great place to soak and rest muscles weary from a day in the theme park. You could also witness Disneyland’s fireworks spectacular from the pool as well.
Location, location, location, the Carousel Inn and Suites may not be the poshest or fanciest of hotels, but its close proximity to the entrance of Disneyland, and reasonable pricing, makes it a good value for a family Disneyland vacation. It takes no more than 15 minutes to walk from any point in either of Disneyland’s two theme parks to the door of your hotel room. If you can’t stay at one of Disneyland’s official hotels, the Carousel Inn and Suites offers a not-too-shabby option right across from the park.
DISCLOSURE: Adventures by Daddy was hosted by the Carousel Inn and Suites, and received complimentary accommodations for our stay. However, all opinions expressed are those of the author. For more family travel news, reviews, and trip reports, be sure to follow Adventures by Daddy on Twitter and “like” our Facebook page, too.