Disneyland’s Paradise Pier Hotel’s long-awaited “Finding Nemo” and “Finding Dory”-themed slide and splash pad will open Tuesday as the venue continues its transition toward becoming the nation’s first Pixar-themed hotel.
Pool patrons can climb three flights of blue stairs to find Crush, the iconic green surfing sea turtle from the “Finding Nemo” movie, directing them to an aquamarine slide.
The 186-foot-long chute curves around island-like foliage and palm trees before dumping ridegoers into a Dory-themed Pixel Pool that includes an underwater painting of Hank the septopus.
There’s also a pop-jet splash pad for children that shoots up funnels of water located in adjacent Nemo’s Cove.
Cabanas, daybeds and bungalows that surround the pool are available for rent on a first-come, first-served basis until the hotel begins taking reservations.
The latest additions are part of the hotel’s evolution into Pixar Place, which is set to open this fall. A new lobby, game areas and restaurant are some of the changes on deck for the 15-story hotel.
Currently, reservations are still being taken for Paradise Pier.
The changes have been a boon for a few travel agents who book Disney vacations.
Pittsburgh-based agent Amanda Emmerling, 37, who specializes in Disney vacations, sees the renovation as an attractive bonus for parents with young children.
Emmerling said she sells more vacation packages to Walt Disney World in Orlando but has experienced a recent uptick in sales to Anaheim.
“The Pixar theme has been a winner,” she said. “I had a regular customer tell me recently that she’s willing to overcome the longer flight to take her kids to Cars Land [an auto-themed section of California Adventure] and stay at the Pixar hotel.”
Emmerling said she was scheduled to stay at Paradise Pier with her two young children earlier this year but postponed the vacation until Pixar was officially open.
“The advantage Disneyland has over Disney World is that Disney World can be very overwhelming for young children while Disneyland’s two parks are right next to each other and the hotels are close,” Emmerling said. “Pixar Place just adds to that.”
Heather Marshall, a 45-year-old Disney travel agent from DeMotte, Ind., stayed at Paradise Pier in February and was excited with the changes.
“The bright colors and the cafe area looked amazing and it’s the little touches that make the hotel friendly,” said Marshall, a fan of Pixar’s “Toy Story” franchise. “The lobby is Pixar-themed and has the [Pixar] lamp and even the restrooms are Woody and Bo-Peep themed. It’s going to be gorgeous when it’s done.”
Disney did not respond to emailed questions regarding the recommended ages for the slide, the size or capacity of the pool, hours of operation, day passes or whether other Disney hotel guests would have access to the facilities.