© Disneyland Paris

Where it begins

The Sleeping Beauty Castle in Disneyland Paris, is probably one of the most beautiful in the world. Overlooking the park, it is visible from almost everywhere, and is a must-see at every visit, for children and adults as well !

How did the imagineers get inspired for the aestheticism of the castle

The imagineers were wondering a lot about the French castle. Indeed, knowing that the American castles were inspired by the castles from le Pays de la Loire, to take the same inspiration would have been too little exotic for the French. All the ideas went through the minds of the imagineers, even going as far as the futuristic castle. 

Painting by Tim Delaney – From Sketch to Reality by Alain Littaye and Didier Ghez – the Walt Disney Company

In the end, the 50 metre high castle, composed of 16 towers, has a French allure, but remains very fanciful. We note for example the presence of cubic trees in front of the castle. The Mont Saint Michel, and its spiral construction is part of the inspiration, but also the Château de Chambord, the Saint-Severin church, the Château de Chaumont, and the towers of Azay-le-Rideau. This castle hides however many secrets, as according to rumors, a dragon…

The Sleeping Beauty Castle in Paris shares an interesting fact with the other Disney castles around the world: all have been set up so that none of them are against the light, at any time of the day or year. So all the pictures are great!

© Disneyland Paris

Other inspirations come, obviously, from Sleeping Beauty, who gave her name to the castle, and which can be found everywhere inside, especially on the stained glass windows, and the 9 tapestries, narrating her story.

The castle also has a shop inspired by The Sword in the Stone. The tribute to Merlin lies in small details, a heterogeneity of the elements. There is also a secret door, which could lead to the Dragon’s lair.

On the other side of the castle entrance you will find La boutique du chateau, which is also inspired by a French place, the Sainte Chapelle of Paris. It is very woody and based on red, green, and gold colors, to remind the Christmas season: you can find Christmas decorations for the tree or the house all year long!

© Disneyland Paris

Where the day ends

At the end of the day, Disney Illumination, the 25th anniversary show that replaces the magnificent Disney Dream, takes place at the castle. Disney animation movies and Disney affiliates, like Star Wars, are brought to life on the castle, which for the occasion has turned into a giant cinema screen.

© Wish2Dream

Source : From Sketch to Reality by Alain Littaye and Didier Ghez, and Disneyland Paris website.