The exclusive Disneyland Club 33 lies behind this non-descript door in New Orleans Square. Everyday at Disneyland, many people pass by this door either not knowing what it is or wishing they could go in.
After the 1964 World’s Fair, Walt Disney wanted to bring some of the attractions that the Disney Imagineers had built back to take up permanent residence in Disneyland. According to In Service to the Mouse, by Jack Lindquist, the first president of Disneyland, Club 33 was built because of a demand from General Electric.
“General Electric insisted that a VIP lounge, like the one they had at the New York World’s Fair–with a bar–be part of their pavilion at Disneyland. GE was told that alcohol was not allowed in Disneyland, but they insisted. Then a compromise was proposed. Disney would construct a private club in New Orleans Square, a new area that within the park just under construction at the time.”
Walt Disney passed away before he could see the finished club inside of New Orleans Square. Walt passed on December 15, 1966, exactly 6 months before the Club opened.
Join us as we go behind the green door in the photos below or in the video that we posted previously.
(The below three pictures are by fellow member Dan Castaneda.)
This table was a prop in Mary Poppins. It can be seen in the Bank’s house on Cherry Tree Lane.
(See our video tour of Club 33 for more views from the club.)
Club 33 To be Expanded
Club 33 has gone mostly unchanged in its 47 year existence. This year is the first time that Disney has closed it down for a large expansion and refurbishment. The club closed on January 5th, 2014, for a 6 month expansion. With this remodel, the Club entrance will be moved to the Court of Angels, which closed in late 2013.
There will be the addition of a new lounge as well, which is to be named “Salon Noveau”, and will be themed after Princess and The Frog (2008). The addition of this lounge is the reason for which the entrance is being relocated. When entering the club, you will ascend the stairs in the Court of Angels, and either go to the right for the main dining room (renamed to “Gran Salon”) or go to the left for the new lounge. More details here>>
Saying Goodbye to the Trophy Room
The kitchen is being expanded as well, which unfortunately leads to the loss of the Trophy Room. The Trophy Room is a room in the club full of taxidermy animals and interesting artifacts. Unfortunately, the Trophy Room has changed quite a bit in its 47 year existence, losing many artifacts. Among the losses, was the famous turkey vulture. Walt thought it would be entertaining to have this vulture, which sat over the door to the trophy room, converse with dining guests. Above the table nearest the door, was a chandelier equipped with microphones. A castmember would listen in on the guests conversation and would add in their conversation through the vulture.
However the structure of the room itself has remained the same. With the Club expansion of the kitchen though, the Trophy Room is being demolished. I was lucky enough to be able to dine in the Trophy Room on the very last night it was open for service, which was January 4th, 2014. Here are pictures of the Trophy Room and pictures from that event:
Below is the menu from the Club 33 Trophy Room celebration.
First course, Rabbit Dumpling.
Second course: Wild Boar Rib and Goose Rillette Gougere
Third course: Hunter-style Branzino, Chicken Consomme, Pig Ear Cracklngs, and Black Truffle
Fourth course: Bison Tenderloin over Chimichurri, with Truffled Mac and Cheese.
Final course: Chocolate Terrine featuring the Club 33 Trophy Room vulture.
Club 33 is also losing the brilliant Chef, Marcel. January 4th was the last night Marcel was at the Club. We presented him with a parting gift, a 3 Liter bottle of Champagne.
All of us at the event signed the champagne bottle box.
Here I am posing with the amazing Marcel on his last night working at Club 33.
We closed out the Club that night, leaving at 2:30 am. It was sad, knowing we were walking out of the Trophy Room for the last time, and knowing Marcel was leaving. But, it was exciting as well, knowing what changes will be coming to the Club!
There will be other changes to the club, including the classic bathrooms and the logo.
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