It’s a big year for renewals at Disneyland Paris, as the resort heads towards its 20th Anniversary and the time comes to start refreshing some of those original developments — particularly the hotels. Undergoing a huge renovation project of its 1,011 rooms is Disney’s Sequoia Lodge, where the changes go a little further than just new flatscreen, digital TVs to replace the positively ancient old tube boxes. The sedate, Antoine Grumbach-designed hotel is being “Disneyfied” with a lightly-spread new theme: Bambi. The 1942 Disney classic can now be seen in the wallpaper border and animation art on the walls, perfectly complementing the existing light fittings with their deer motifs.
These photos posted on the official Disneyland Paris Twitter feed show the makeover to be a warm and inviting refresh, with crisp white bedspreads and “Disney” additions that are inoffensive to the American national parks theme, in the same restrained style as the Disney touches over at Disneyland Hotel. The new television cabinets have been specially designed for the hotel while green and gold tones bring a more earthy, organic look compared to the old rooms.
With Pixar Animation Studios’ Cars continuing to be featured in similar touches at Disney’s Hotel Santa Fe next door, where will the “Disneyfication” of the Disney Hotels be seen next? Back in 1992, then-Disney CEO Michael Eisner was keen for the six main hotels to be seen as architectural statements as much as magical, “Disney” places to stay. Now, 20 years on, the resort is seeing the need to add characters here and there and — probably more crucially — update the décor and room services to compete with partner hotels and help to justify the leap in price up to a more “Disney” Disney Hotel.