Wednesday, March 5, 2014

More Photos From Opening Day 1955

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Photographs From Disneyland's Opening Day (from film) Part 1

Here are some amazing color shots of Disneyland's opening day, July 17, 1955.

 This is Bonita Granville-Wrather with Debbie Reynolds and then husband Eddie Fisher.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

1957 Vintage Footage Disneyland Hotel and the Disneyland Band

Here is some footage from June 22nd, 1957. The event was a fundraiser for the City of Hope Telerama and was broadcast live from the Disneyland Hotel and features Vesey Walker and the Disneyland Band. Also has some great shots of the two year old, Disneyland Hotel.

Night Shots at the Original Disneyland Hotel

Photographs taken at night of the Original Disneyland Hotel are not that common. Here are a few that I hope you enjoy.

First shot is from the Marina Tower overlooking Seaports of the Pacific and the Disneyland Hotel Marina.

 Next is a beautiful shot of the Horseshoe Falls in front of the Bonita Tower.
 The Laser Light Show from the mid-70's.
 Ceremonial torch lighting.
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Sunday, January 12, 2014

Vintage 1950's Hotel and Disneyland Footage

How about a little fun. I recently obtained a vintage film which featured footage of Disneyland and the Disneyland Hotel from the 1950s. I have clipped out this footage and pasted it below. 

1950's Disneyland & Disneyland Hotel footage. Not sure of dates although I would say this is some time in 1956. Strange that there are no people in Disneyland. Doesn't look like the shops area of the Disneyland Hotel is open for business although the Gourmet Restaurant may be. Gourmet opened in February, 1956. Pool has no people and it opened in June of 1956. Missing some items in the pool area like the cabanas for dressing which were added last, just prior to opening and no lounge chairs around the pool. I can even see a truck parked on Main Street inside Disneyland in one part of the film.

Any guesses to specific dates? Please provide evidence and reasoning for your input.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

1968: Jack Wrather's 50th Birthday Party

In 1968, Jack Wrather, with the loving help and support of his wife Bonita Granville-Wrather & family, celebrated his 50th birthday. A portion of this celebration took place at the Disneyland Hotel. Here is the invitation sent to guests. Bonita was affectionately known as Bunny by friends.

And now some photos from the festivities. What I really like about candid (as opposed to staged) photographs is, they often show areas of the Disneyland Hotel not ordinarily seen in staged shots. Simple things like signs, elevators, hallways, restaurant interiors all help to get an idea of what the Disneyland Hotel really looked like in years past. Hope you enjoy these.

Here is the luggage tag used by Mr. Wrather: (just added another one too!!)


And now, some of the Wrather family. His son Chris in the middle with Jack having fun on the left.

Jack with his 50 tag on his shirt.
And I actually have the very tag he used!
The picture below is particularly amazing! The gentleman in the light suit/dark tie is architect William Pereira who, by the way, was the original architect for the Disneyland Hotel in late 1954. After downloading this picture and carefully studying it, I found the amazing part. If you look at the left of the picture, there is a gentleman sitting (next to the pole) in an orange shirt. If anyone can tell me who that is, I will be amazed. I know who it is but I want to see if there are any other's out there who can say. Hint: he too was active in the development of the original Disneyland Hotel.
And now for some fun. This cake was created for Jack to help celebrate the event.
And just what did Jack Wrather think about all of this?
Actually, from what I have been told, heard and read, Jack was thrilled with the festivities.

Friday, April 26, 2013

From 1957 Filmed at the Disneyland Hotel: Mouseketeers Roll Call


Dubbed a "Telerama", this benefit for the City of Hope Hospital in Duarte, California was partially broadcast live from the Disneyland Hotel in Anaheim. This clip from the presentation (entire segment is over an hour) features the Mouseketeers.

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Friday, April 19, 2013

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Mystery Solved

There are several mysteries I still cannot answer with regard to the history of the Disneyland Hotel. Most involve exact dates of when buildings opened or were torn down, or when shops changed names or signs were put up. I am happy to say I have solved one mystery. I saw the picture below and always wondered how they could list "first registered guests" when it was obvious to me that the shops were open at the Hotel with the buildings up and signs in place in the background. Those buildings were not built and signs installed until mid 1956 and the Hotel's first night for guests was October 5, 1955 even though only seven rooms were actually opened that first night.

Here is how I was able to solve this mystery. I found several pictures from the Hotel's first anniversary which were taken in August of 1957. The "official" grand opening of the Disneyland Hotel was in August of 1956 where a star-studded gala was held with over 400 invited special guests. The photo above was actually taken in August of 1957 where Mr. & Mrs. Arnone were brought back to help celebrate the first anniversary but they were indeed the first registered guest on October 5th, 1955....mystery solved!
The photo above features Mr. & Mrs. Arnone at the 1st anniversary with Jack & Bonita Wrather.

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Thursday, February 7, 2013

Both Books Now Available In E-Format

We have PDF versions of both books now available. Please contact us for further information to get your copies delivered to your mailbox.

Magical Hotel

We are also offering a project that was finished but never released called "Addendums." It's a beautiful publication that was never printed or distributed. This is "Addendum #1" and covers the very early details & happenings regarding the building of the Disneyland Hotel.