Hidden Path To The Fantasy Faire

The Disney Princess Fantasy Faire is a hub of activity, and is the starting point for two different hidden paths to various lands. But did you know there’s a discreet passageway leading directly into the Fantasy Faire?

To find this hidden path, start in Frontierland. Head to Rancho del Zocalo, which is located directly to the left of the Shootin’ Explosion.


Follow this path past the restaurant entrance, and you’ll see a large corridor at the end of the walkway.


The Hidden Path to the Fantasy Faire leads right into the center of the plaza, between the stage and Royal Hall. This path is a quick and easy way to pass between Frontierland and the Fantasy Faire, and it’s definitely a great place to show off your park knowledge to your friends!

Crane Company Bathroom Of Tomorrow

CraneCompanyBathroomOfTomorrow1 Source

April 1956 – August 1960


Tomorrowland – Guests could find the Bathroom of Tomorrow (sometimes called the Bathroom of the Future) at the front of Tomorrowland. This attraction shared a building with the Hall of Chemistry, where Star Tours stands today.


In the early years of Tomorrowland, most attractions were sponsored by outside companies in partnership with Disney. Companies like Monsanto focused on chemical technology, while others like Kaiser hoped to create attractions focusing on aluminum and other metals. Crane Plumbing Company hoped to join the ranks of the Tomorrowland elite, sponsoring an attraction focused on home plumbing and bathroom technology. Crane designed the Bathroom of Tomorrow, a walkthrough attraction showcasing the possibilities of home technology and plumbing. The attraction opened a year into the park’s operation, and became part of the early lineup of technology showcases in Tomorrowland.


This model bathroom was not actually a functional space; it was instead like the House of the Future, showing guests how bathrooms would evolve alongside technology. The bathroom itself was gold-plated, with every fixture displayed in bright yellow. This air-conditioned space included a state-of-the-art bathtub, a toilet, a bidet, a wrapping vanity with built-in sinks, and a huge glass shower. The bathroom also had some unusual features, like built-in dumbbells, ceramic figurines, and its own connected telephone. At the end of the exhibit, guests could interact with a series of faucets and valves. The Bathroom of Tomorrow gave guests a glimpse into the future, but its exaggerated features and décor weren’t so much practical as they were mere fantasy.

CraneCompanyBathroomOfTomorrow2 Source


The Bathroom of Tomorrow was never a popular attraction, particularly among younger audiences. With the much more exciting Hall of Chemistry right next door, the Bathroom of Tomorrow struggled to draw much of an audience, even in the beginning. After just four years of operation, the Bathroom of Tomorrow closed its doors, dashing Crane’s hopes of a lasting partnership with Disney.


Instead of a traditional ribbon cutting, the park had a “valve turning” ceremony. Walt Disney, Crane Company president Frank Elliot, and attraction designer Henry Dreyfuss each turned a massive ceremonial valve to mark the walkthrough’s opening.

The Bathroom of Tomorrow boasted both air conditioning and a hot water boiler system, assuring guests they could “forget about the weather” and always stay comfortable.

CraneCompanyBathroomOfTomorrow3 Source

Casa de Fritos/Casa Mexicana

CasaDeFritos1 Source

August 1955 – April 2001


Frontierland – Casa de Fritos/Casa Mexicana sat in the center of Frontierland, next to the Mine Train. Today, this space is part of the Rancho del Zocalo patio.


Service Type – quick service

Seating – adjacent patio

Entertainment – periodic live music


Frontierland was originally Disneyland’s wilderness retreat in the park, so there wasn’t much in the way of dining aside from the Golden Horseshoe and picnic areas. But two months after Opening Day, Casa de Fritos arrived in western Frontierland, near what is now the River Belle Terrace. Casa de Fritos was a large quick-service spot serving a variety of Mexican-inspired meals and snacks. The restaurant opened as part of a partnership between Disney and Frito, so the snack food was featured in almost every meal. If guests just wanted a bag of Frito chips, they could stop by the Frito Kid statue/vending machine.

After two years of operation, Casa de Fritos outgrew its small space, and moved to its permanent location in central Frontierland. Over time, the restaurant became increasingly run down and outdated, and Frontierland was in need of a new and improved Mexican spot. So in 1982, Disney ended its partnership with Frito, and Casa de Fritos closed for an extensive overhaul. Later that year, the Casa reopened as Casa Mexicana, a spacious and combination indoor/outdoor Mexican restaurant. Casa Mexicana quickly became a success, and was one of the more popular quick service spots in western Disneyland for almost two decades.


In 2000, Disney announced plans to revamp and upgrade Casa Mexicana. The restaurant closed in early 2001, and opened later in the year as Rancho del Zocalo. The new quick-service spot had the same concept as Casa Mexicana, with newly decorated mosaic features, an upgraded menu, and a new sponsorship from Ortega.


Casa Mexicana was sponsored by Lawry’s Foods from 1982-2000.

Casa de Fritos and Casa Mexicana were both known for having periodic Mariachi performances.

Resort Updates – September 2015

Fall has finally arrived in Disneyland, and though there’s been little relief from the heat, beautiful shades of orange and red in the parks at least give the illusion that the seasons are changing. Main Street USA and Buena Vista Street now display an eclectic mix of Diamond décor and fall accents.



As Disney prepares to break ground on Star Wars Land, the park will be closing a number of attractions for an extended period of time. All of the Rivers of America attractions will be shut down, including Fantasmic!, the Mark Twain Riverboat & Sailing Ship Columbia, the Davy Crockett Explorer Canoes, and Tom Sawyer Island. These attractions will close in January, and are scheduled to remain closed until April 2017. Big Thunder Ranch will permanently close in January, and I suspect this area will be the entrance to Star Wars Land.

But wait…the closures are not limited to Frontierland! The Disneyland Railroad and all of its stations will also close until 2017, and the track may be slightly altered or moved to fit into the park’s new landscape.

There was one other, somewhat controversial, closure announcement this month as well, and it has nothing to do with Star Wars Land. Disney announced that Aladdin – A Musical Spectacular will leave California Adventure in January to make room for a new Frozen show. Fans have expressed major frustration about this closure, considering the massive presence Frozen already has in both parks. My personal opinion? Aladdin is a unique and fantastically done show, having stood the test of time in a park prone to quick attraction turnovers. I would much rather Disney re-work the Sing-Along into a new show and leave Aladdin alone!


September also marked the beginning of Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party. This after-hours event gives adults and kids alike the chance to dress up in costume and trick or treat in the park. But even daytime guests got in on the fun; Halloween time means the villains are out in full force, including some of the most elusive characters like Frollo and the Queen of Hearts. I spotted the Evil Queen from Snow White next to the Alice in Wonderland dark ride:


Even the Dapper Dans get in on the Halloween spirit, serenading guests in orange striped suits.


Space Mountain and the Haunted Mansion have also taken on their special Halloween forms, with ghosts moving into Space Mountain’s universe and Jack Skellington taking over the mansion. Ghost Galaxy runs until November, but the Haunted Mansion Holiday overlay will last through December, since its theme combines Halloween and Christmas.



The shops in both parks and in Downtown Disney are now selling Halloween treats, including Jack Skellington cake pops, poison caramel apples, and Haunted Mansion cakes.

And finally, there has been visible progress on the new Cars Land ride. Imagineers were spotted testing a ride vehicle on the track this month, though there are no new updates as to how the ride will operate.

Chicken Plantation Restaurant

ChickenPlantationRestaurant1 Source

July 1955 – January 1962


Frontierland – The Chicken Plantation Restaurant stood on the outskirts of Frontierland, overlooking the Rivers of America. This area is now roughly between Pirates of the Caribbean and Café Orleans in New Orleans Square.


Service Type – quick service

Seating – adjacent patio

Entertainment – none


The Chicken Plantation was an Opening Day original, and the park’s go-to spot for fried chicken. This massive quick-service restaurant dominated the waterfront, and was the best place to sit and watch the activity on the Rivers of America. Nighttime visitors could also enjoy the strings of glowing lanterns hanging from the restaurant’s balcony, giving the restaurant grounds a colorful glow.


Despite the Chicken Plantation’s popularity, Disney ultimately needed the space for a new land: New Orleans Square. The Plantation served its last chicken dinner in 1962, and the construction walls soon went up around the whole western side of the park. But the Chicken Plantation’s legacy lives on; the Blue Bayou façade inside Pirates of the Caribbean was heavily inspired by the Frontierland classic.


Swift’s Premium Chicken sponsored the Chicken Plantation for its entire 7-year run.

If you visit the gift shop in Adventureland, you can find two columns from the Chicken Plantation building. They surround a shelf on the end of the shop closest to the Enchanted Tiki Room.

Though the front of the restaurant had a grand plantation feel, the back of the restaurant was actually done in more of a Mexican ranch style.