There is some speculation- and for good reason- that New Orleans Square's Royal Court is becoming an inclusive, alcohol serving, elegant restaurant. There's been a good bit of construction, and with the recent changes to the physical layout and the guest policy for members of Club 33, some folks are thinking the reason for construction is due to the conversion of this bit of Disneyland history.
Whatever happens, there's no doubt its a pretty little area! Imagineer Herb Ryman painted this gorgeous piece back in the 1960's to provide a glimpse into the world of the Paris of the South. As a piece of art, it's quite lovely on its own. As a piece of Disney history, it's charm perfectly conveys the equal charms of the grandest addition to Walt's park since its opening. New Orleans Square continues to be the benchmark for elegantly detailed Imagineering work at Disneyland. (Of course, now at California Adventure, I'd venture to say its Cars Land. The beautiful Buena Vista Street is pretty but it's unfortunately too small and without an E Ticket attraction to dignify it beyond being a well done ode to Los Angeles at Walt's arrival.)
Thanks to Vintage Disneyland Tickets for this piece!
The magnificent care taken in designing New Orleans Square was evident as the Imagineers included not one but two courtyards. The more famous one, Court of Angels (with a sign calling it Court des Anges), pictured above on the cover of Vacationland, is now closed off to guests and serves as the waiting area for patrons of Club 33. Pity. It was one of the premier places in the park for a quick look, a walk inside, and a photographer's paradise.
(Art copyright The Walt Disney Company.)