5 hospitality recipes from Disney movies

The Walt Disney classics are at the center of the Storytelling power of the company. The recipes for their success can be applied to hospitality.

Disney movies have consistently relied on a few key elements that have made their success.

Some of these recipes are shared by successful hospitality players.

Let’s explore them together:


Hospitality companies are gradually turning to content marketing to connect with consumers, to build loyalty and, ultimately, to increase business. For some companies, content is the core of their business not a promotional tool. Timeless and engaging, the Disney classics like the Bambi, The Jungle Book, or the Beauty and Beast, all inspired, entertained, and even influenced us during our upbringing. These animated movies are at the center of the storytelling power of the company.

Sleeping Beauty - Once upon a dream - 1959

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The spirit of innovation is the conviction that tomorrow has yet to be invented. The hospitality industry being highly competitive, it is important for its players to maintain or improve their market positions and reputations. Innovation at various levels can be a key driver of sustained success for the entire hospitality industry. The Disney movies were often pionneers in using technology to bring entertainment to the next level, for example when the first "fully synchronized" sound cartoon was released.

Mickey Mouse - Steamboat Willie - 1928


Aiming for excellence in any field, requires passion, commitment, dedication and hard work. Within the industry that is often understood as “Service Excellence” or delivering beyond the customer’s expectation. The Disney Institute has been teaching professionals from other industries how to perfect the art of customer service since the 1990s..

Beauty and the Beast - Be Our Guest - 1991

Community & respect

In fact, hospitality companies are increasingly operating at an international level. Employees and managers are therefore confronted on a daily basis with trans-generational and trans-cultural challenges. Putting the notion of respect as a core value for the hospitality industry is essential for effective interaction between the different hospitality functions and for overall company success. Disney movies have evolved over time alongside our society's attitudes to represent very different lifestyles.

Cinderella - The work song (Cinderelly) - 1950

Optimism & Openness

"Attitude is key to providing quality services in the hospitality industry" explains Mr. Neequaye Sasraku, Deputy Director at the Hotel Catering and Tourism Training Institute (HOTCATT). In fact, the industry players’ performance is still very much based on teamwork, positive attitude, creativity and dynamism. As a people’s industry this is mainly transmitted by its employees. Disney movies are typically about hope, aspiration and positive outcomes.

P.S. While this article uses Disney movies to illustrate themes that can be successfully applied to hospitality, it is not meant to vouch for any past or present opinions of the Walt Disney Company and its owners.

Photo credit: Symphony in the Stars with Sorcerer Mickey via photopin (license)