I have a longstanding love of Hershey and it has nothing to do with chocolate.
For years, growing up in Southern Maryland, I thought of Hershey as the home of the Hershey bar and Hersheypark. And that was pretty much all I thought about it. That all changed two years ago when Hershey Entertainment & Resorts invited me to attend a weekend previewing all that Hershey had to offer (in addition to chocolate and Hersheypark).
It was during that trip that I was introduced to The Hotel Hershey, a Mediterranean-themed hotel commissioned by Milton S. Hershey and completed in 1933.
This was especially significant as the building of The Hotel Hershey took place during the Great Depression. It was part of Hershey’s Great Building Campaign where he decided to take all of those back-burnered building projects and move them to the front burner. As a result, he employed many townspeople at a time when they needed it most.
I’ve since stayed at The Hotel Hershey several more times and I’m never disappointed. You can definitely feel the charm of the 1930s in the lobby and in the common areas (especially during the winter months, when I most recently visited) and in some of the original rooms.
If you take your time to look around while you walk the hallways, you’ll notice that it’s lined with tropical photographs – many of which provided the inspiration for the hotel. As you reach the Fountain Lobby where the influence is most strongly felt, it makes sense when you find that these influences came from Hershey’s many trips to Cuba, a major supplier of the sugar he used in his milk chocolate.
But what good is a luxurious hotel if you don’t have equivalent rooms to luxuriate in? So let’s get down to business and talk about the six key areas a woman might want to know about when staying at The Hotel Hershey.
Location – The Hotel Hershey
Whether you’re looking for a girlfriend getaway (it’s home to the award-winning Spa at The Hotel Hershey), a romantic couples weekend (check out their amazing Wine & Food Festival), or a family vacation, the hotel is perfectly situated.
The hotel is seated up high on a hill overlooking simple charms like the Hershey Gardens or modern day fun like Hersheypark. In fact, a free shuttle is provided to Hersheypark for all guests of the hotel.
It’s also a little known fact that The Hotel Hershey is surrounded by miles of hiking trails. A quick view out of my window gave me a glimpse into the winter landscape surrounding the hotel.
Safety – The Hotel Hershey
It doesn’t get much safer than Hershey, PA. (Fun fact: Hershey is technically not an incorporated town. Everything is in Derry Township). It’s a small, dense, family-friendly town but most things will require a car.
Inside the hotel, the rooms are securely situation on four floors of the wide, sprawling hotel. Hotel staff were always easy to find.
Character – The Hotel Hershey
If you’re looking for a modern glass and steel hotel, you won’t find it here. But you will find evidence of the pride of Hershey. From the town to the founder to the history, The Hotel Hershey is set on staying true to Milton Hershey’s original vision.
Take time to explore the grounds and the halls. And stop in for an amazing breakfast at The Circular. An unparalleled architectural feat at the time, Milton Hershey wanted a large dining room unobstructed by columns or pillars. He got it along with an amazing menu!
Vanity – The Hotel Hershey
In this larger room, there were no complaints about needing additional space. Not only did the bathroom provide plenty of counter space (with standard accessories like a hairdryer), but there was also an additional counterspace (with plugs!) when you entered the room.
Don’t be alarmed, though, when you find a scale in the bathroom. The Hotel Hershey isn’t trying to remind you what happened when you indulge in the chocolate they provide you at check-in and at turndown. It’s simply a requirement for hotels that meet the AAA Four Diamond standard.
Toiletries – The Hotel Hershey
I hate to pack my own toiletries so I’m always really hoping for some good products when I’m staying at a nice hotel. It’s also a great way to try upscale bath products you might not have otherwise heard of.
At The Hotel Hershey, everything, of course, is centered around chocolate. Even the toiletries. You won’t smell like a candy bar but you will love the hints of mandarin and chocolate found in all their toiletry products (available for purchase in the gift shop).
Comfort – The Hotel Hershey
Finally, let’s talk about the comfort of the room. Whether you’ve spent the day relaxing in the spa or you’ve run your feet into the ground at the park, you’ll find the beds, linens, and pillows to be just what you need at the end of a long day.
Extras – The Hotel Hershey
Anything I forgot? Let me know and I’ll try to answer your questions. In the meantime, here are a few extra things to know about the hotel.
- Free Hershey bars for each member of your party upon check-in (you choose if you want milk or dark chocolate).
- Free tickets to the nearby Hershey Gardens and Hershey Story museum are included with your stay and provided at check-in.
- Free wifi throughout the hotel
- Free bottled water in your room!
I always wanted to go to Hershey Pennsylvania to tour the factory. First and foremost thank you for sharing your story. My husband and I are looking forward to seeing the sites there, so my question to you would be, after we go to Hershey Gardens, the museum and of course take a tour of the factory, what else is there to do? I have a week off in April and this will be our destination.