by Michael J. Shapiro | October 16, 2018
Disney has officially killed plans to build a luxury hotel on the Disneyland grounds in Anaheim, Calif. The 700-room high-end property was to be built in Downtown Disney, but the project was put on hold in August, when the city of Anaheim reversed course on significant tax incentives that had been put in place for luxury-hotel development. The tax deal had initially been granted to Disney for a different location within the resort.
"We've taken the time to review the economics of our proposed four-diamond hotel for Anaheim," Disneyland Resort director of external communications Liz Jaeger said in a statement, "and have made the final decision to cancel the project. While this is disappointing for many, the conditions and agreements that stimulated this investment in Anaheim no longer exist, and we must therefore adjust our long-term investment strategy."
Local developer Wincome also had planned to take advantage of the tax subsidy and had received approval to build a luxury property on South Harbor Blvd., at the site where the company's more modest Anaheim Hotel now stands. But tax incentives became a politically charged issue that has since become intertwined with a November ballot measure to raise local wages, further complicating the issue for developers. The Wincome luxury development has been temporarily shelved, but there is still a possibility of it being revived at that location, according to a spokesperson.
Wincome continues to develop the luxury Westin Anaheim Resort, which is a separate project already underway at the site where the Anabella once stood.
Disney now plans to open new restaurants or retail venues in the downtown location that had been set aside for the hotel project.