Grand Californian Club Update – Plus New Tips for DL MaxPass and Rise of the Resistance!

While it’s been a couple months since we spent any extended time at the Disneyland Resort, we sure made up for it the last two weekends! We enjoyed back to back Club Level stays at our favorite Grand Californian Hotel and Spa, along with Chef’s Counter dining at Napa Rose, and several meals in the lounge as well!

Our first weekend was with our kids and grandparents, so that was a very fun but much busier stay. It included a lucky spin on Rise of the Resistance, some great photos, and experiencing the park with dear friends. The kids also had a blast with their favorite sitter while we treated my in-laws to Chefs Counter, one of our favorite experiences at the Resort that didn’t disappoint. The amazing cuisine, customized to each palate along with amazing wines aways blows us away here.  The service is top notch and each person’s 5 course meal is completely different! It’s one of the best signature value dining experiences at Disney that we have done, and always a special treat!

Napa Rose is always a treat!
We had great views from our balcony and the club lounge!

After our dinner, it was fun to go back to the Verandah and spend Storytime with Pluto!  Even our nine year old was still all smiles at this intimate character experience, which includes a lot of private character time with Pluto in his PJS while a Cast Member reads a Disney bedtime story.  The photos and games are a lot of fun as well, and were a highlight for our kids’ weekend!


Love bedtime stories in the lounge with Pluto!  

On Saturday morning, we used the Extra Magic Hour to enter Disneyland by about 730 AM.   Note – we had AL six of us enter the park, this is crucial to get a Rise of the Resistance Boarding Group under the current system!  We quickly moved to the back of the park in Tomorrowland away from the masses, and sent the kids and grandparents on rides while we each had our phones out ready go go.  My husband used a digital clock on his watch that we used, and right at about 7 seconds before 8 am, we each opened the app ready to snag that boarding group.  He beat me out, scoring boarding group 15!  We were ecstatic. It was fun to hear the whoops and delighted yelps around us as people got groups. We definitely recommend being ready to roll and open that app right when the clock hits opening hour!  Multiple phones and fast phones seem to help too!  The ride groups went quickly, and we were off the ride by 9AM, flying through the queue! Just like in Walt Disney World, this ride blew us away. Our kids loved it as well – it’s a true immersive experience like no other, and we highly recommend the nerves and stress of getting in there early to ride!

Some shots of the lines in the morning and the hype leading up to Rise of Resistance boarding groups acquisition, and some fun shots from the attraction! 

We continued to enjoy the club amenities the rest of the day and into Sunday morning.  Fortunately, my husband and I got to come back for a kid free weekend the following Friday, and enjoy even more of the awesome Cast and amenities in the Verandah lounge.  Joanie was especially kind during both of our visits, and has become a dear friend we can’t wait to visit again!  We love spending days at the Grand even if we don’t ever set foot in the parks! The service and comfort are bar none, and we have become so attached to the club lounge benefits it’s hard to give them up!  I highly recommend this convenient and luxurious addition to your Disney stay! 🙂

Some final pictures from the Verandah lounge, including a selfie with Joanie, our beloved Cast Member friend! 


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