An Inside Look at Walt Disney’s Disneyland Apartment
Ever wonder what it would be like to live at the happiest place on Earth? Sadly, most of us will never get to experience that fantasy — but, one guy did. As the man behind the magic, Walt Disney wanted a place where he could hide away from the Disneyland crowds, but still soak it all in. So, he had an apartment built inside the park.
The catch? Only he and his family — and special guests, of course — were allowed inside. In fact, he kept this space so secretive that photographers were rarely allowed inside. As a result, there are only a few photos of him and his family inside their home away from home.
Today, all Disneyland guests walk passed the apartment upon entering the park, but very few of them have ever been allowed inside. Want to know what Walt Disney’s Disneyland apartment looks like? From the 1950s decor (no. 3) to the reason cast members leave a light on in the window (no. 7), we share an inside look, ahead.
1. It’s located above Disneyland’s firehouse on Main Street U.S.A.
During the construction of Disneyland, Walt wanted an area where he could watch his dreams come to fruition. So, the construction crew built him an apartment on Main Street U.S.A., on the second floor of the theme park’s firehouse.
Once the park opened, he would stand in the window and watch as guests poured through the front gates and enjoyed his creation.
Next: We can’t believe the size of it.
2. It’s really small
Because it’s located on top of the firehouse, the apartment is really small — so small that it doesn’t even have a bedroom. At 500 square feet, the apartment features a kitchen, bathroom, family room area, and a wooden desk, where Walt once worked from.
Next: The decor had ties to Disney movie magic.
3. It was decorated to match the firehouse
Originally decorated by Disney set designer (and designer of Main Street U.S.A.), Emil Kuri, the apartment has a red and white theme to match the firehouse. While most of the original furniture has been replaced, the apartment decor still has the same 1950s feel, with the original fire engine red carpet and window treatments.
Next: No firehouse apartment is complete without this hidden feature.
4. It once had a hidden fire fire pole in the closet
It’s no secret that Walt Disney liked to have fun, so a hidden fire pole was definitely a necessity in his Disneyland apartment. The pole was located in a closet of the apartment, but sadly sealed up after an eager young fan climbed up the pole in an effort to meet the man behind the magic.
Next: Walt had a lot of say in this one aspect of the apartment.
5. Most of the decorations are antiques
Another unique feature of the apartment? Most of the decorations are antiques that Walt and his wife, Lillian picked out themselves. “It was all little things that they picked up when they were traveling around the country various times,” Walt’s daughter, Diane Disney Miller once shared with Huffington Post.
Next: You’ll never believe what Walt’s nephews used to do when visiting his apartment.
6. The terrace faces The Jungle Cruise
In addition to the indoor space, Walt Disney’s Disneyland apartment also features a terrace that overlooks The Jungle Cruise. But, while you may be able to hear the animatronic animals from the outdoor area, it’s covered up by large trees and shrubbery for privacy.
Rumor has it, Walt’s nephews used to climb down the terrace and jump out at guests enjoying The Jungle Cruise.
Next: Next time you’re at Disneyland, see if you can spot this.
7. The light in the window represents Walt’s spirit
The next time you’re at Disneyland, look up at the window above the firehouse. Where Walt Disney once stood and marveled at his beloved theme park sits a small lamp. Cast members leave the light to symbolize his spirit is alive at Disneyland.
That said, Whenever his daughters would visit the park, the light was switched off out of respect for their loss.
Check out The Cheat Sheet on Facebook!