The Hotel Hershey

hotelhersheyAt $300+ a night, this hotel may be more appropriate
accommodations for fans of Luxist, but since I just returned from a weekend
wedding here, I thought I’d share some details that may be of interest to Gadling readers as well.

The Hotel Hershey is by far the
most elegant attraction of the chocolate oasis that is the town of Hershey, PA.
Once you get past the roller coasters, theme parks and endless supply of chocolate
Kisses, it is easy to discover that the Hershey
legacy is a rich one, full of interesting historical tidbits and European influences, which can be observed by walking
the grounds of this central Pennsylvania mirage.

Milton Hershey and his wife Catherine loved to travel.
The halls of the hotel are lined with black and white photos from the early 1900’s, showcasing the company’s
manufacturing operations, as well as their trips abroad to places like Egypt and Spain. The $2 million hotel, built in
1932, was modeled after a similar one the couple had visited in the Mediterranean. Rooms like the Iberian Lounge and
Castilian Ballroom are decorated with lush carpets, towering palm trees and handsome furnishings. According to hotel
literature, famous world-traveler Lowell Thomas described it as, “…a palace that out-places the palaces of the
Maharajahs of India.”

The hotel is a unique and popular spot for weddings, but it also clearly attracts many vacationing families, drawn
to the hotel?s extensive offering of outdoor activities, including two swimming pools, tennis and bocce courts, nature
trails, two championship golf courses and a fitness center. 
I took an hour to tour the nearby 23-acre Hershey Gardens, which includes
a Butterfly House, a Japanese garden, and a replica of Mrs. Hershey?s original rose garden. Hotel guests receive free
admission to the gardens and the Hershey Museum. Another perk that may be
worth the hefty hotel price is that
Hersheypark opens an hour earlier each day for
hotel guests only. The free chocolate bar upon check-in was a welcome treat as well!