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Monday, October 14, 2013

Where To Place A Restaurant In Disneyland and DCA

Beer and Pretzels from DCA's Bayside Brews
A Disney Parks Blog Photo
I must say I found it rather amusing that last Friday, Disney posted in their Parks Blog (link) an announcement that had the Limited Time Magic promotion celebrating an Ocktober Fest time over at DCA's Bayside Brews. The picture shown above of the beer and pretzels came from the blog posting. What does Bayside Brews usually provide to guests when it isn't October? Well, they serve beer and pretzels. I guess when you serve up special German brews and add Bavarian mustard to the pretzels and offer a bratwurst, you can call it a Limited Time Magic event. 

But maybe there is something else. It isn't written about a lot but every once in awhile out in the Disney blog world you hear that DCA's newest dining facilities, Boardwalk Pizza and Pasta & The Paradise Garden Grill, on the far side of Paradise Paradise don't pull in the people that Disney had hoped even though the food served up at these places is really pretty decent. Meanwhile the neighboring Bayside Brews seems to have a line that is much shorter than the Karl Strauss beer truck located in the more centrally located Pacific Wharf dining area (often 10 or 15 people deep).

Bayside Brews - usually never a long wait

Here is the reason lack of diners summed up in a simple question. "You mean we have to way over there to get something to eat?" Very few people just pass by the Paradise Pier dining establishments. Being in the far corner of the park you have to be over there for a reason, If the mostly amusement park rides of Paradise Pier do not appeal to you, then you have no reason to be in that area,

Over at Disneyland, the same can be said for the Hungry Bear Restaurant. Now Hungry Bear can pack them in at lunch time due to the close proximity of the popular Splash Mountain but much of the day, the place can be pretty quiet (and a very nice place to take a break). On really slow days in the winter months, the place may not even open at all. Compare that with a place like the Tomorrowland Terrace which serves up some of the worst food in the park but because of its centralized location, usually has people searching for tables. Being off the beaten path is also why a place like Toon Town probably doesn't have a real dining facility at all (hot dogs and slices of really bad pizza don't count).

If you want a dining facility to be really popular try keep it close proximity to foot traffic where people just pass by getting from one place to the next. It doesn't hurt to serve good food although this doesn't appear to be a requirement in all cases.

Entrance to the Boardwalk Pizza and Pasta & Paradise Garden Grill


  1. Very true about Paradise Garden Grill--they are tucked away a bit. Disney seems to be fixing that, as they have a new attraction coming for the holidays: Viva Navidad! to be held in the Paradise Garden area. Food, music, the Three Caballeros, and more. I guess they must've realized they weren't utilizing this area to its potential. :)

    1. Yes... Disney does seem to be doing things to try and draw attention to that end of Paradise Pier. The new Toy Story meet and greet area set up at the old Maliboomer site may draw a few more people to at least look at the restaurants.

  2. They might get more foot traffic if they'd reopen the Paradise Pier gate, which is so convenient for guests staying at Paradise Pier. Otherwise, the walk is just too long.

    1. That single gate was so convenient. Once that gate entrance was removed (post 9/11 security is the official reason I believe), the Paradise Pier Hotel became a non-option as a place to stay for us. Hard to explain a walk of close to a mile to the park front gates when there is/was an entrance just a couple of hundred feet away from the hotel entrance..