Disneyland’s on the move. Disney announced a number of changes coming to their California resort, and although none of them touch on Disneyland itself, they could still impact your visits in the future. They involve the Paradise Pier Hotel, the most affordable of Disney’s three Anaheim hotels, and Downtown Disney, the shopping and dining district that’s the Disneyland equivalent to Disney Springs in Florida.
Let’s start with the hotel. Paradise Pier Hotel, which currently has a beach theme with some Toy Story design elements, will be following in the footsteps of the former Paradise Pier section of Disney’s California Adventure with a broader and more defined Pixar theme. The hotel’s lobby currently has a statue of Goofy holding a surfboard, but under the new theme that’ll be replaced with a large recreation of the Pixar Lamp on top of its yellow, red and blue ball. Disney promises other “whimsical character movements” that reference various Pixar movies will be found throughout the redesigned hotel, and the concept art includes mobiles with references to Finding Nemo, Monsters, Inc., and more. The hotel will also be getting its own special entrance into California Adventure, letting guests walk right into the Pixar Pier section that’s home to the Incredicoaster and other popular rides. Disney hasn’t revealed much else about the new hotel, but promises that more info is on the way.
The Downtown Disney updates are manifold, and include the arrival of new restaurants, the redesign of current popular spots, and the return of a longtime favorite that closed at the start of the year. Perhaps the biggest news is that Downtown Disney will soon be the home of Din Tai Fung, the beloved Taiwanese soup dumpling restaurant that currently has 11 locations on the west coast and one in Las Vegas. This should be a really popular addition to the resort. Meanwhile Chef Carlos Gaytan, who has earned himself one of those elusive Michelin stars, is teaming up with the Patina Restaurant Group to convert the current Catal and Uva Bar into the new restaurants Paseo and Centrico. Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen will undergo a transformation that many on social media aren’t especially excited for; the New Orleans-themed restaurant, named after a member of New Orleans’ most famous (and fractious) family of restauranteurs, looks like a fairly generic modern retail building in the concept art, and not the little Crescent City outpost that it currently represents. Finally Earl of Sandwich, a longtime popular Downtown Disney spot that closed permanently at the start of 2022, will be returning as a walk-up location later this year for a limited time.
You can find more about the changes coming to Disneyland Resort over at the Disney Parks Blog—or stay tuned to Paste for all the big Disney and theme park news.