by Amanda Geronikos
It’s easy to see why so many families choose this hotel when they visit Hershey, Pa. They pay less than they’d be charged right in Hershey (the hotel is technically situated in Harrisburg), and Hersheypark is only a 15-minute drive from the hotel anyway. The hotel also offers spacious suites with fully equipped kitchens, which include full-size refrigerators, dishwashers, microwaves and two-burner stovetops. There’s an indoor swimming pool, too, which is largely occupied by kids, thanks in part to extended hours — the pool opens at 6 a.m. and doesn’t close until 12 a.m. Additionally, the hotel offers complimentary breakfast (daily) and complimentary dinner receptions (Monday through Thursday), and is just steps from several other restaurants, all casual and all with kid-friendly fare and take-out service.
If the hotel lacks anything, it’s just pleasant views. You might be lucky enough to see the hotel’s small courtyard from your window, but even then, you’ll also be looking at a highway, or a combination of a Hilton Garden Inn, strip mall (where the aforementioned restaurants are), and another stretch of highway with lighted signs in the distance. What the hotel lacks in outdoor views, however, is made up for indoors, where a homey lobby, likely reminiscent of your grandma’s living room, welcomes guests when they arrive. It has cozy chairs and sofas, a giant flat-screen TV and an electric fireplace. The hallways on the second and third floors mimic the same feel, with sitting chairs and rounded, submarine-like windows that look down onto the lobby.
You’ll hardly notice your outdoor and indoor surroundings though; you’ll be preoccupied with getting to “The Sweetest Place on the Earth,” and rightfully so. Don’t forget to grab a complimentary Hershey Kiss on your way out the door!
Learn more about Homewood Suites by Hilton.
Our Editor Loves
- 15-minute drive to Hersheypark
- Rooms with fully equipped kitchens
- Pool and complimentary breakfast
- Theme Park
- Connecting Rooms
- Free Wi-Fi
- Onsite Dining
Find the Best Price for Your Stay
The hotel provides simply furnished and exceptionally spacious suites, which come in three main variations: Studio, One-Bedroom and Two-Bedroom:
This suite comfortably sleeps up to four people in one king bed and one pullout sofa bed, though both beds are in the same, giant room, so you won't find any privacy in this unit.
One-Bedroom King Suite
If privacy is a necessity, opt for a One-Bedroom Suite, which also sleeps four people, but has a separate bedroom for the king bed.
One-Bedroom Double Queen Suite
This unit is a little bigger than the former, with two queens beds in the bedroom and a pullout sofa in the living room.
This unit sleeps eight people, with a king bed in one bedroom and two queens in another, as well as a pullout sofa in the living area.
All suites provide fully equipped kitchens, which include full-size refrigerators, microwaves, two-burner stovetops, dishwashers and plenty of plates, silverware and the like. Suites also have 32-inch, flat-screen TV's; DVD players; work desks; shower and tub combinations in the bathrooms; and living areas with pullout sofa beds, along with standard amenities, such as irons and ironing boards, iPod docking stations, hairdryers, safes and telephones. ADA-compliant and smoking rooms are available, as are cribs, and at no cost to guests.
by Bob S
Nice location, quiet. Hotel service was great - everyone was cheerful and accommodating. Evening social was very nice and the breakfast good. Room was large and nice. The location was close to the airport. Would stay there again!
Nice and clean hotel. Staff was friendly, breakfast was decent, liked the cocktail time they had during the afternoon and pretty close to everything. Also, they provided coffee all the time. I will definitely stay there again.
Odds are, you're in the area to see Hersheypark if you're staying at this hotel. When you need a break from the park, however, you can retreat to the hotel for a swim in the indoor pool. Heck, the kids will want to take a dip before you even get to the park, since pool hours are 6 a.m. to 12 a.m. The pool ranges between 3 and 5 feet in depth, and is ADA-compliant; a lifeguard is not on duty.
When little fingers start to shrivel up, you can head back to you room and watch a DVD, available to rent at the front desk for $4. You can also grab a board game from the business center, which is open 24 hours a day.
When weather allows, families can take advantage of the outdoor courtyard, which includes a basketball court, shuffleboard, putting green and barbecue grills.
Complimentary breakfast is served daily, 6 to 9 a.m. Monday through Friday and 7 to 10 a.m. Saturday and Sunday. It's generally on par with other chain hotel breakfasts, and includes a make-your-own waffle iron and a small selection of hot foods, typically eggs, pancakes and meat, such as bacon or sausage. Other offerings include bagels, toast, cereal, oatmeal (packets), yogurt (with additional toppings, such as granola and cranberries), fresh fruit, hardboiled eggs and cottage cheese. Coffee, tea and apple and orange juice are also available. Breakfast can be eaten in the lobby lounge area, adjacent to the breakfast nook, though many families opt to take it back the food back to their rooms. A bonus for parents with young kids: plastic plates and silverware are available.
If you stay at the hotel Monday through Thursday, you'll be able to enjoy a complimentary "light" dinner, as well, which might include tacos, meatloaf or meatball sandwiches. Dinner is served from 5 to 7 p.m., along with beer and wine for parents.
With a fully equipped kitchen in your room, you'll likely want to cook some of your meals, as well. To stock up on groceries, head to Swatara Square, about 2.5 miles from the hotel. There you'll find a Weis Market, Sam's Club and Walmart Supercenter, as well as a liquor and beer store.
Additionally, the hotel is just steps from Ruby Tuesday, as well as Papa Joe's (a pizzeria with a kid's menu), Tomato CafÃ© (soups, salads and sandwiches) and Fiesta Mexico. Take-out service is available at all of the restaurants, in the event you just want to relax with dinner in your hotel room.
Planning & Tips
All About the Extras
Next to the hotel's front desk, an onsite convenience store sells snacks, which, of course, include Hershey candy, along with a small selection of medicines and toiletries. You'll also find laundry detergent at the store, since there is a laundry facility on the second floor (across from room 228). Machines are coin-operated, and washers and dryers cost $1.50 each. If you need quarters, you can exchange a few dollar bills at the front desk.
Free Wi-Fi is available throughout the hotel, and is easy to access; you'll be able to connect to "HHonors" by simply inputting your last name and room number. You can also use the Internet on a computer in the business center, which also offers printers, should you need to print attraction tickets.
Facing the indoor pool, a small fitness center provides two treadmills, an elliptical and a few dumbbells; towels are also offered.
The Art of Smart Timing
Hershey draws crowds in the summer months, when all of the amusements at Hersheypark are open; you can expect higher hotel rates at this time. The area is also popular with families during the winter holidays, when the park hosts Hershey Sweet Lights, a lighted driving tour, and Christmas Candylane, which includes festive decorations, music, rides (a limited amount are open) and visits with Santa Claus.
For inexpensive rates and a good time to visit Hershey, stay at the hotel for a weekend in February, when Hershey promotes Chocolate-Covered February. Many of the area's hotels and attractions offer special events, such as a Chocolate-Covered Children's Tea at Hershey Lodge and a program called Try It With Truffles, which allows you to make your own treats at The Hershey Story.
If traveling by plane, fly into Harrisburg International Airport. The hotel is only 15 minutes away, and you can get there via a rental car. Amtrak's Keystone Service will also get you there, but you'll have to take a taxi from the airport to the train station, and then another taxi from the train station to the hotel; it'll be easier to just rent a car.
If you plan to travel by car, your GPS will likely get you there via I-81. Once you merge on to U.S. 322-E, you'll continue onto Eisenhower Boulevard, and then Bass Pro Drive. If you see signs for Bass Pro Shops, you'll know you're in the right area -- the store is less than a minute's drive from the hotel.
You'll definitely need a car to get around town, especially if you're staying at this hotel, located outside of Hershey. Plus, the hotel offers free parking, so a car will be your best mode of transportation.
For Mom and Dad
Hershey is a bona fide family destination, and you won't likely find babysitting services or nightlife in the area. Our recommendation is Lancaster Brewing Company -- it's a short drive from the hotel and offers craft beers for parents, along with casual fare the whole family will enjoy together.
If you're traveling with someone who might be able to watch the kids for an afternoon or evening, travel further afield to Troegs Brewery, about 15 minutes from the hotel. The brewery is popular for its seasonal beers, which include Nugget Nectar and Mad Elf. It also offers delicious food (try the giant soft pretzel), as well as guided brewery tours for just $5 per person. You'll need to book a guided tour several months in advance though. Free, self-guided tours are offered, though there's not much to see if you choose to tour the premises that way.