Disneyland and Disney World aren’t identical. One of the big ways they differ is in size; Disney World is much larger than Disneyland. Because of this there are far fewer hotels at Disneyland than Disney World; I can think of dozens in Orlando, but Disneyland has only three: the Disneyland Hotel, the Grand Californian, and Paradise Pier. Disneyland makes up for that by teaming up with several local Anaheim Hotels as part of its Good Neighbor program.
A Disneyland Good Neighbor Hotel isn’t officially a Disney hotel. Anyone can stay at them without going to the park (though I suppose one could do that for a Disney hotel too, except that it wouldn’t make sense to spend that kind of money and not do a Disney vacation), and they’re not officially run by Disney. But guests interested in a Disney vacation, can stay at a Good Neighbor Hotel and have access to some of the perks that come with a stay at Disneyland.
Obviously Disney wants you to stay in its own hotels, so the full kind of ticket/room booking deals that come with a stay at a Disney hotel are not available for Good Neighbor Hotels (unless the park is running a special deal). However, you still get a few things: all of the hotels are close to Disney, and they’re of an assured quality; Disney wouldn’t partner with them if they weren’t.
Each guest at a Good Neighbor Hotel does get one Park Hopper ticket, valid for same-day entry. They also get one Magic Morning admission (which lets guests onto certain rides in the morning before they open), the option of a Character Call (a phone call from Mickey, Minnie, or Goofy at a time you designate), and preferred seating at select California Adventure shows. If you book a 2012 Disneyland stay at a Good Neighbor Hotel you can also get entry to Mickey’s Toontown Morning Madness: an hour playing with Mickey and his friends in Toontown before the park officially opens.
There are over 40 Good Neighbor Hotels so it’s not possible to profile them all here. However, the Disneyland website has a neat page where it lists all of the hotels. It allows you to narrow down the choices at which you’re looking by features (size, quality of hotels), amenities (pets, transportation to Disneyland, complimentary parking), and gives basic information about each one. This includes the “category” of the hotel, on a range from economy to suites (basically talking about how nice the hotel is), and the proximity to Disneyland, which range from “half a mile” to “across the street.”
Narrowing down your selection still might take a while, so the site has another neat option. It allows you to pick up to three hotels to compare. It puts the selected hotels side by side, listing the details for each hotel. It’s a much easier and quicker way to compare hotels if you’re trying to choose between them.
Potential guests can book their stay at a Disneyland Good Neighbor Hotel once they’ve made a decision. Doing so is one of the primary ways to ensure that you get the perks mentioned above as part of your stay. You can peruse all 41 hotels at the official Disneyland website here.
*(The above image by prayitno is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 License.)