Disney’s Club 33: Exclusive, Magical, Overrated

By Sarah Johnson |Staff Writer|

Club 33 is said to be the most exclusive location in the Disneyland resort. It is a place members can go to enjoy a fancy meal and alcoholic beverages that not just anyone is welcomed into.

Most Disney fans dream of getting into this exclusive club and would call someone “fortunate” or “lucky” for getting this experience. Apparently, I am one of the fortunate.

Being a Disneyland pass holder for more years than I’d like to admit, I was aware of the club but didn’t know exactly what to expect.

Walt Disney originally had the idea for this lounge back in the 1960s: a place where he could entertain VIP dignitaries and celebrities. The club opened in 1967, just five months after Disney passed away.

The secretive lounge is located in New Orleans Square, just next to Blue Bayou restaurant at 33 Royal Street. There are rumored to be 500 members and 800 eager humans on the waiting list.

The waitlist to become a member of this club is not only closed at this moment in time, but once entering the wait-list, you could be waiting years or even a lifetime before receiving an invitation.

When, and if, you receive an invite to become an oh-so worthy member, you better be ready to crack open your piggy bank, wallet, life savings, and your unborn child’s college funds.

Disney does not have any specific site disclosing the exact prices of memberships, but multiple online sources show the following range of numbers to be the price for exclusivity.

To become a member of Disney’s Club 33, you will need to fork up approximately $25,000 initiation fees, as well as an approximate $10,000 annual membership fee.

If you’re anything like myself, your jaw just dropped. People spend money on this? It must be amazing, right? So how do you get in?

Basically, similar to most things in life, you have to have connections—a member to invite you in for a meal.
To be honest, I wasn’t expecting much. Probably just another overpriced Disney “experience,” as they all seem to be these days.

I walked into the club with an open mind and positive thoughts, but I’d say it sunk to my low expectations.

It wasn’t the fact that a three course meal, glass of red wine, and generous tip cost me $120—it was the fact that I couldn’t find the exclusivity in the experience.

The food wasn’t anything to rave about: three spears of grilled white asparagus, a salad with strawberries, and a rare filet mignon that I found less flavorful than the ones I have had at Outback Steakhouse.

I left hungry—physically and mentally—wondering what made this experience so special and “exclusive.”

Sure, I heard some tidbits about Club 33 history, and got to take pictures on the balcony above Disney’s New Orleans Square that few get to step upon, but so what?

It almost seems to be another place for the wealthy to throw their money around, continuing to feel superior, and look down on commoners in the resort—literally.

I guess it was just a bit too pretentious for my taste, and I personally couldn’t wait to get out of there and grab a burger, outside of the park of course.

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