Hershey Park is, located in Hershey, PA, is one of the most popular amusement parks on the East Coast of the United States. And since it’s the northeast’s answer to Disney World, with that comes the lodging issues. It is nearly impossible to hit all the rides, shows and water park in one day, which means an overnight stay may be in order. If you’re planning a stay in the Hershey, PA area, your two best bets for lodging are within minutes of Hershey Park.
The Hershey Lodge and the Hotel Hershey both offer similar perks for visitors to the park, but which hotel is better? Here is a comparison of The Hershey Lodge and The Hotel Hershey, the two most popular hotels for families planning a vacation to Hershey Park.
Both the Hershey Lodge and the Hotel Hershey offer family size rooms and suites. The Lodge has a homey, rustic feel to it while the Hotel is more elegant. The grounds of the Hotel Hershey are immaculately maintained and classical music is steamed through outdoor speakers.
As for the rooms, both offer upscale suites (and the Hotel Hershey even has pricier wood side cottages). But for regular family size rooms (for a family of 4) the rooms are very similar in size and appearance. Both hotels had nice granite counter tops in the bathrooms, flat screen TV’s and similar looking queen size beds. The bedding was even similar. The Hotel Hershey has a nicer shower with better water pressure.
The Hershey Lodge features a huge lobby with a cozy, four-sided fireplace. Families can lounge on the leather sofas and sit by the fire. The gift shop is nearby and it’s filled with tons of fun souvenirs and candy.
The Hotel Hershey has a more formal lobby, with a few fancy couches, but it’s not as big and inviting as the Hershey Lodge’s lobby. At the Hotel Hershey, lounging is done best upstairs in the Moroccan-themed lounge that comes complete with a beautiful tiled fountain. The adjoining bar, the Iberian Lounge, is a cozier place to hang out, with a small fireplace. There’s also a huge outdoor patio, where live jazz bands perform on summer weekend nights.
The Lodge has a few family friendly restaurants like Lebbie Lebechers buffet and The Bear’s Den, which is a sports-themed pub. For a fancier dinner, check out the Hershey Grill or The Forebay.
The Hotel Hershey has much more upscale dining at The Circular Dining Room. The Fountain Café and Harvest are two other dining options. For breakfast, the Circular Dining Room offers a full brunch buffet.
Both hotels have The Coffee Beanery, which is a great place to pick up a breakfast sandwich, bagels, muffins or a cup of coffee.
Both hotels offer perks such as a shuttle to Hershey Park and Hershey’s Chocolate World, early admittance to the park (guests of both hotels are admitted to the park a full hour earlier than the general public), discounted park tickets and free tickets to the Hershey Gardens and the Hershey Museum. Oh, and you’re given enough Hershey bars for the entire family at either hotel’s check in.
The Hershey Lodge offers fun family oriented activities like family bingo, outdoor movies (by the pool), miniature golf and character visits (your kids will love getting a photo with a life-size Reese’s or Kit Kat). Both hotels have kid-friendly video game arcades, but the Hershey Lodge has a much larger arcade with a wider selection of games and crane machines.
The Hotel Hershey features more adult perks, like the upscale Hershey Spa and the recently renovated outdoor pool complex (complete with cabana rentals for $200 per day). There’s also year-round outdoor ice skating, a fully equipped gym, tennis and basketball courts, hiking trails, croquet and sand volleyball as well as several gift shops and boutiques. And while both hotels have fitness centers, the Hotel has much more equipment and also offers fitness classes.
Both hotels are extremely kids friendly. It’s Hershey Park, after all! Both offer kid’s hotel check in, which is fun for the kids to get their own Hershey ID badges and free candy.
All of the restaurants at both hotels offer kids menus, even the Circular Dining Room at the Hotel Hershey, where men are required to wear jackets for dinner and brunch (the kids menu offers things like filet mignon and salmon and the kids price for the Sunday brunch buffet is almost $20, but still- kids are welcome).
Here is the big difference between the two hotels. A traditional room with two double beds for this Labor Day weekend at the Hotel averaged $409 per night. The Hershey Lodge for the same weekend? $299 per night-and that room has two queen size beds.
Of course, seasonal promotions are always available so it’s smart to get on Hershey’s mailing list. If you do receive a promotional offer, be sure to lock it in right away though, because they are almost always offered on a limited availability.
No matter where you stay, both hotels are great lodging options if you want to experience the fun of Hershey, PA.
And either way, the maids will leave Hershey’s Kisses in your room.