No one blends brilliant photography and detailed Disneyland Resort information better than Andy Castro. Andy is a Southern California native and has been photographing the Disney parks for years. He also provides insider information on enhancements, refurbishments, remodels and merchandise at the Disney parks. Andy’s weekly blog, Dateline Disneyland, is regarded as one the most visually impressive and informative blogs covering the Disneyland Resort. We are proud to count Andy as a close friend of the Anaheim HoJo!
Andy wrote a recent blog feature series about the history of the Howard Johnson. Here is the third part in the series on the long history of HoJo and Disneyland which began in 1965:
Celebrating 50 Years of “Retro Family Fun” at HoJo Anaheim
You really can’t beat watching Disneyland fireworks from your balcony, seeing the Monorail pass by poolside, or walking less than 10 minutes from your hotel before stepping onto Main Street, U.S.A. — and for nearly 50 years guests of the Howard Johnson Anaheim have enjoyed these luxuries thanks to the HoJo’s incredible location.
Indeed, the HoJo’s seven beautiful acres are nestled comfortably across the street from Disneyland, giving HoJo guests great views of the Matterhorn Bobsleds and Disneyland Monorail. These views, along with a short 8-minute, half-mile walk to Disneyland’s turnstiles have been a big draw for guests since the HoJo opened in 1965. Below, a 1960s-era brochure for the Howard Johnson Anaheim showcases its spectacular tower room views and excellent location “opposite of Disneyland.”
The interior of that same brochure really highlights how close Disneyland is.
Of course, there are around ten hotels in Anaheim that truly offer rooms within walking-distance to Disneyland, so why all the fuss over the HoJo? Well, unlike other nearby hotels, the HoJo also sits on seven spacious, landscaped acres, providing plenty of elbow room, garden areas and pools that aren’t on rooftops or in parking lots. With plenty of space, the HoJo is also one of the last remaining Disneyland-area hotels to offer ample free parking to its guests. Lots of space while being just steps away from Disneyland — it’s the best of both worlds!
HoJo guests enjoy 500 feet of Monorail track running alongside the hotel grounds, more than any other Anaheim hotel except for Disney’s own Grand Californian Hotel. Disneyland guests aboard the Monorail get prime views of the HoJo, too, catching glimpses of the HoJo’s Castaway Cove water playground, the wonderful William L. Pereira-designed mid-century modern hotel tower, and their adjacent Mimi’s Cafe Restaurant. Below, a 1960s-era view of the HoJo’s main pool with the Matterhorn rising behind it and a view of that same pool area today, now featuring the Castaway Cove water playground.
Of course, no day at Disneyland is complete without fireworks, and that’s extra true at the HoJo! Do you ever get too tired after a day in the parks but don’t want to miss the fireworks? Well, guests staying in the HoJo’s main tower can just step out on their balcony to see the show only a mere 900 feet away!
Are you visiting Disneyland and want the perfect family hotel that’s closer to the theme parks than TWO of Disney’s own hotels? Look no further than the TripAdvisor fan favorite, the Howard Johnson Hotel and Water Playground! FIVE time award winner in the category “Top 25 Hotels for Families in the United States“, and Travel + Leisure Magazine’s “Most Comfortable Hotel Beds in the U.S.”!