/trip/ verb.
1. an act of going to a place and returning, a journey or excursion, especially for pleasure.

/veel/ adverb.
2. often or much; frequently

Reveal your next travel destination.

24 HOURS IN HERSHEY

It's been quite some time since I had last been to Hershey, Pennsylvania. In the 90s it was specifically for one thing in mind—visiting adventurous Hershey Park with friends and family. Peace and quiet certainly wasn't my calling, the opposite in fact and I'm sure my mom will remind me.

This time brought me back with historic luxury and relaxed elegance on my mind. Growing up, indeed I have. It's the perfect weekend escape from the city—whether you're coming from either NYC or Philadelphia. Even Boston, in my case. At the luxurious and historic, Forbes 4-star Hotel Hershey, you can have the best of both worlds, without ever even leaving the property.

 The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania

 The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania

Almost immediately after entering The Hotel Hershey gates, you'll be taken back by the historic Mediterranean-inspired architecture. Spring was in full bloom and it only got more colorful from here on out.

The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania

The Spanish-tiled lobby at The Hotel Hershey is a great spot to catch up with a book or chat with friends under palm trees—whilst the soothing fountain splashes in the distance. Even more so ideal for an evening cocktail with its plush, oversized seating arrangements. Which I just so happened to discover firsthand later that evening.

 The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania

 The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania

As a huge chandelier fan, I had to take a peek at the Gothically neoclassical ballroom located on the mezzanine level overlooking the lobby. What do you think?

The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania

The circa 1930s hotel was painstakingly built during the Great Depression by chocolate magnate, Milton S. Hershey and as you'll see, both the architecture and interiors were inspired by Mediterranean trips with his wife, Catherine. As one of America's landmark hotels, The Hotel Hershey is a distinguished member of Historic Hotels of America.

The view from my spacious king guest room was nothing short of spectacular. Don't you agree?

The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania

The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania

After a welcoming check-in, complete with an endless array of Hershey's chocolate, I headed down the hill to Hershey Gardens. No need to retrieve the A5 from valet and leave the property; I love it. But, if walking is an issue, the hotel's valet will eagerly drive you over golf cart-style.

Hershey Gardens in Hershey, Pennsylvania

Hershey Gardens opened to the public in 1937 as a simple rose garden occupying a little over 3 acres. On the very 1st day more than 20,000 visitors came to see the rose garden and over the course of 80 years, the gardens have been enlarged to their current size of 23 acres.

Hershey Gardens in Hershey, Pennsylvania

Hershey Gardens in Hershey, Pennsylvania

You'll discover a Japanese garden, magnolia grove, herb garden, oak grove, ornamental grass collection, perennial garden, conifer collection, substantial rose gardens with 7,000 rose bushes, a seasonal flower garden, and the Children's Garden.

Hershey Gardens in Hershey, Pennsylvania

Hershey Gardens in Hershey, Pennsylvania

The tropical Butterfly Atrium is home to 600 butterflies from around the world and one of only 25 butterfly atriums in the country. Check out the video below with rare butterflies from South and Central America, Africa and Asia in-flight.

Hershey Gardens in Hershey, Pennsylvania

I learned an interesting fact while visiting the Butterfly Atrium. While in-flight, butterflies show color—when perched to rest or eat, the color is moth-like in resemblance. Simple reasoning is because the inside of their wings are colorful to attract a mate and the exterior is camouflage to deter predators. Sounds like a Fatal Attraction sequel!

Settled into my room, I figured it would be a perfect time to head over to the spa to take a dip in the pool and relax in the jacuzzi.

hotel-hershey-review

Refreshed from the water, yet still parched from my drive, dinner at The Circular couldn't come soon enough. But first, what to wear?

hotel-hershey-review

Being a preppy New Englander, I opted for a navy pinstripe Banana Republic blazer over a Burberry t-shirt, J. Crew seersucker shorts (perfected by lobsters) and Cole Haan boat shoes. I think I made my case and won. If I could do better, please let me know.

hotel-hershey-review

The Circular, the historic Hotel Hershey's flagship dining experience imagined by Milton Hershey, comes complete with stained glass floor-to-ceiling windows, iconic views of the reflecting pools and of course—unpretentious and refined hospitality.

Per usual, I started off with a tall glass of Veuve Clicquot champagne. Given that the high had been 98°, anything light, dry and refreshing was definitely in order. "Now all my hopes and all my dreams are suddenly reality."

Next came the King & Blue Crab Louie. Hearts of palm, avocado, baby lettuce and Louie dressing continued to cool me down from the record-breaking heat.

Followed by Cocoa Dusted Sea Scallops, I savored each and every bite as the brown butter emulsion and carrot purée blended so well together.

I went with the Fish of the Day for my entree. I was excited to try the Chesapeake Bay Soft Shell Crab dish and being in the mid-Atlantic less than an hour from Maryland, I knew it would be not only fresh, but tasty. And I was correct.

For dessert, I bypassed the many chocolate decadence(s) and went straight for the Rhubarb Upside-Down Cake with strawberry cheesecake, lemongrass yogurt ice cream and red berry tarragon sauce. I for sure, was not disappointed. 

Waking up well rested and ready for a hike, I would first need to come to a decision as to what I wanted to order for breakfast room service. I always like to pre-order so I can squeeze more activities in.

The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania

The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania

With those incredibly tough decisions now out of the way, I headed out to wander the well-manicured grounds on my way over to the trail heads.

The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania

The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania

There's certainly no shortage of beauty anywhere you look. Obviously.

I decided to venture out on the yellow-marked Mountain Ridge Pass, a 3-mile roundtrip excursion that overlooked the surrounding mountains and dense Pennsylvania woodlands.

The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania

The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania

On my way back to the hotel, more beauty abounds.

The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania

The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania

Central Pennsylvania or an expansive Mediterranean villa perched upon a cliff? You be the judge.

The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania

The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania

Room service simply couldn't have come at a better time. I was starving.

The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania

The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania

My favorite, Eggs Benedict, got me out of the hunger strike I had concurred quite quickly. Thanks for having my back, Benny.

The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania

The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania

Fresh mixed berries, smoked salmon and fresh-squeezed grapefruit juice also helped with the daunting task. Sealed with a kiss—literally.

My time in Hershey had come to an end, but there's one thing I think we can all agree on: it's simply the sweetest place on earth. 🍫

The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania

The Hotel Hershey in Hershey, Pennsylvania

5 REASONS TO VISIT SALEM

5 REASONS TO VISIT SALEM

THE BRISTOL

THE BRISTOL