Thursday, November 07, 2013

Trip Report Pt. 2: Downtown Disney

On the way towards the park, I wandered through Downtown Disney. The early hours of the Disneyland Resort are my favorite; the place is a virtual ghost town, which makes it ideal for photographs. I can take my time and compose the perfect (or nearly perfect) shot. Even though the merchandise does absolutely nothing for me, I do love the style of the window cutout displays.

The Rube Goldberg-esque figures outside the World of Disney have always been a favorite of mine.

Marceline's was creating some delicious caramel apples when I passed by. Oh so tempting.

The La Brea Bakery expansion was tastefully done.

The path to the trams. When was the last time you saw this corridor look so empty?

I often wonder how many people shop at Downtown Disney; are the shops enough of a draw for locals to spend their money here? The fairly frequent rotation of stores would probably be a good indicator that the answer is "no."

In the middle of this photo is the Vault Disney shop.

Loving the whimsical design of the vault and the colorful lighting.

Build-A-Bear. It always seems like it's going to be so cheap, but each step of the process adds a few more bucks and by the time you're done...ka ching ka ching ka ching.

I have yet to eat at Tortilla Joe's, which is part of the Patina Group. Consisting of approximately 60 restaurants, they often run the caf├ęs and eateries found in museums and other cultural centers.

Last but not least, the fairly new Earl of Sandwich. Again, another restaurant I have yet to visit.

My feelings about Downtown Disney are the same as the ones I have for Main Street and Buena Vista Street. Beautiful on the outside, shallow on the inside. Most of the stores are of no interest to me; if only their merchandise was as unique and well-crafted as the exteriors and window displays.

Next up: we finally enter the park!

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K. Martinez said...

I thought Downtown Disney was the best thing about the "new" Disneyland Resort when it first opened. I used to eat there all the time at the various dining establishments. I also enjoyed World of Disney and the Department 56 store that used to be there. Nowadays it's more of a walkthrough on the way to the parks unless I'm with someone else.

Tortilla Jo's used to be a favorite of mine when it opened in Downtown Disney, though last time I ate there in 2006 I didn't care much for menu changes. Not sure how it is now.

Since recent improvements and additions, I've tended to shift my time away from Downtown Disney towards California Adventure with it's new Buena Vista Street and Cars Land areas.

I'm kind of surprised they don't open up some sort of Marvel store featuring their comics and various products related to Marvel.

Anonymous said...

I feel mostly the same way about DD. The only businesses we visited were the La Brea Bakery (before expansion, that's good news, it needed it) and the Lego Store. And, as I mentioned, the restaurant Catal, which was very good.

La Brea was a zoo in the AM, of course, too small for the crowd load. Lego was fun for all four of us, good memories of my kids childhood in here. The rest of the shops were not appealing merchandise, but the styling and design quality of the structures are first rate.

I understand that the Florida DD is to be renovated in a major way. I know nothing of it otherwise. Does anyone have news or trip reports to share?