Château de la Belle au Bois Dormant

Le Château de la Belle au Bois Dormant

Le Château de la Belle au Bois Dormant

Le Château de la Belle au Bois Dormant

Le Château de la Belle au Bois Dormant

Le Château de la Belle au Bois Dormant

Le Château de la Belle au Bois Dormant

Le Château de la Belle au Bois Dormant

Le Château de la Belle au Bois Dormant

Le Château de la Belle au Bois Dormant

Le Château de la Belle au Bois Dormant

Le Château de la Belle au Bois Dormant

Le Château de la Belle au Bois Dormant

Le Château de la Belle au Bois Dormant

The Sleeping Beauty's Castle stretching to the sky ist not only a magical sight but also the centerpiece of the Disneyland Park and its well known landmark - but it also has beauty inside...

As guests enter Disneyland Paris through the arches of the Disneyland Paris Railroad Station they are immediately immersed into the world of Main Street U.S.A. A recreation of turn of the century small town America, here every last detail is meticulous created - but towering majestically in the distance, at the furthest end of the street stands a fairy tale castle - surely the most memorable and magical sight in the park. Still during the planning of the park the castle created one of the most intriguing challenges for the park’s designers, the Imagineers: How to build a fantasy castle in a continent that already plays home to some of the most stunning castles in the world?

The original inspiration for Cinderella’s Castle in Florida comes from a real castle just a short drive away from Disneyland Paris, the Chateau de Ussé; so to create a castle truly worthy of its location the Imagineers sought inspiration from classic fairy tale illustrations to create a castle who’s whimsical turrets, intricate stonework and delicate colour make it look as if it has fallen from the pages of a storybook.

Sleeping Beauty's Castle stands an impressive 148-foot tall, although it appears to be even taller due to "forced perspective" - a technique from the world of movie in which the higher floors are built at a slightly smaller scale to those close to the ground therefore exaggerating the true size. This is just one of many such optical illusions utilised within the park. But it's not that pure size that makes it so impressive, it's its elegant forms, the sixteen turrets stretching toward the sky, its ornate roofs and stained glass windows - combining the world of fairy tales and real castles as it seems to grow out of the green hills and the rocks...

Inside the main hallway the roof is held aloft by columns that are carved into the shape of trees, which seem to magically sparkle as if touched by magic. Here guests can explore 2 unique shops, to the right of the entrance "La Boutique du Chateau" a store where it is Christmas every day of the year with all manner of seasonal decorations featuring favourite Disney characters. Whilst to the left guests can enter the workshop of Merlin the Magician. At "Merlin L'Echanteur" they will find a selection of glass and crystal as well as ornate swords and jewelled gifts. From the corner of the room the sounds of distant roaring drift through an open doorway temping visitors to explore dungeons below the castle...

But in the main hall wider stairs also lead upwards to the gallery, where guests can view the sparkling trees a little closer as well as admiring beautiful hand made tapestries and stained glass windows which retell the story of Disney’s 1950 classic Sleeping Beauty. A doorway leads onto a balcony, which offers a panoramic view of Fantasyland, from the beautiful Carrousel de Lancelot onto the Queen of Hearts Castle at the centre of Alice’s Curious Labyrinth in the distance.

Sleeping Beauty's Castle is a truly magnificent structure and arguably the most beautiful in any Disney theme park. Combined with the unique gallery and it's dark dungeons it makes a worthy centrepiece to the Magic Kingdom.

Tips

Some of the most stunning displays of handcraft in all of the resort can be found on the gallery - the stained glass windows created by Paul Chapman in London.

Compact

  • Maximum height: 148 foot / 46 meter
  • Waitingtime: Waitingtime: 1 of 5

Specials

The castel we know today was chosen out of a wide array of concepts from the Imagineers, which included nearly everything from a more colorful version of Cinderella's Castle as seen in the Magic Kingdom in Florida to a futuristic Art-Nouveau Variante design by Tim Delaney. But in the Tom Morris' structure inspired by Mont Saint-Michel and the drawings of Eyvind Earle for Disney's Animated Classic "Sleeping Beauty" won the race.

Due to its prominent location and the fact that it is recognized as the landmark of the Disneyland Park all over the world the Castle also was the natural choice as the centerpiece of the 1st anniversary for which it was temporarily transformed into a gigantic birthday cake.

The Imagineers returned to the basic idea for the fifth anniversary of the resort, also the theme was a fool's castle to fit into the generals celebrations theme that was based on the "Hunchback of Notre Dame" animated feature. In a difference to the decoration for the first anniversary the one in 1997 stayed up for the whole year.

While the Imagineers created both concepts and the special looks, the actual decorations for the Fool's Castle were produced by the company F.X.Déco which gives a little backstage scoop of this and other projects for DLP on their website.

Limits

The gallery can also be reached by elevator to allow access for wheelchair users. The access code for the eleavtor is available at the City Hall and the Merlin l'Enchanteur shop.

DLP.info votings

Child:
4,0 Spacer
Atmosphere:
4,5
Youth:
3,0  
Thrill:
0,5
Adult:
4,0  
Music:
3,5
Senior:
4,0  
Themeing:
4,5

More photos

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