These chocolate-centric hotels are the excuse you needed to plan your vacation around eating dessert.

By Amy Louise Bailey
July 08, 2019
Courtesy of Soneva Fushi

What makes a hotel truly desirable? For many, location, design, and service are at the top of the list. Others, however, seek out places that speak to their specific interests. And if one of your interests happens to be chocolate, we have delicious news.

Over recent years, turning chocolate into an experience that extends well beyond the dessert menu has become a rising trend. Hoteliers from the Caribbean to China are featuring dedicated ateliers, chocolate-making courses, spa treatments utilizing cacao, wine pairing sessions, and chocolate painting classes, among other indulgent activities. Some have gone so far as to base their brands entirely around chocolate, featuring mocha-shaded references throughout and luring in aficionados from around the world.

Whether you’re interested in a full-fledged immersion or you’re simply seeking an indulgent escape, Travel + Leisure has identified some of the best chocolate hotels in the world, where the most devoted enthusiasts are sure to be in their element.

Hotel Fabrica do Chocolat: Viana do Castelo, Portugal

Ever wanted to step inside Hansel and Gretel’s candy house? Or wake up in a Willy Wonka-themed room? It’s entirely possible at Portugal’s Fabrica do Chocolat hotel, which has candy-themed suites and a museum that is totally dedicated to chocolate. Guests can also indulge in cocoa without the calories at the hotel’s spa, which features a "chocotherapy" treatment menu with a range of regenerating therapies using a pure cocoa that is believed to have cardiocirculatory benefits. Fabrica do Chocolat also offers chocolate tasting and making workshops, making it a popular destination for birthdays and events. And, of course, the fairytale references are extremely popular with children.

Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc: Antibes, France

Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc is synonymous with the glamour of Slim Aarons and the Cannes Film Festival, but it’s also notable for its magnificent Chocolate Atelier led by Lilian Bonnefoi and his team of nine expert confectioners. Here you will find decadent seasonal creations and beautifully made chocolates that are sure to satisfy even the most particular connoisseurs. And from May to September each year, an ice cream bar is set up with a selection of homemade flavors that can be topped with caramelized fruits and the Atelier’s signature chocolate — perfect for enjoying by the famed cliffside pool. This French Riviera icon has always been revered for its culinary prowess and is one of the most spectacular places to dine along the entire coastline. If there was ever a place to pull off the engagement-ring-in-the-dessert scenario, this is it.

The Chocolate Boutique Ho Bournemouth, UK