Friday, February 15, 2013

Happy Chocolate Land

My name is Anne-Marie and I am a chocoholic.
As a young child I did not like chocolate; but after I was introduced to M&M’s, I was hooked.

When I found out Shanghai was opening a theme park named Happy Chocolate Land devoted entirely to sweets, I knew I had to go visit my Mecca.

My first trip to Happy Chocolate Land was a little disappointing.  Purdue had just lost their bowl game, and I needed some chocolate therapy to ease the pain.  So we traveled to Happy Chocolate Land only to find that it was not open yet.  Rather than going Griswold on the sign, Chris and I headed to a barbecue lunch.  

Fortunately, yesterday Chocolate Happy Land was open and ready to fulfill all of my chocolaty dreams. 

Bring on the chocolate!!

After paying the 120 RMB admission fee, I scurried into the first building to find little kids baking cookies. 

Don’t get me wrong, baking cookies is fun, but I wanted to see some chocolate goodness!!  So Chris and I headed to the second building. 

Baking cookies can be fun, but I am here for the chocolate!!!

Building two was a wonderland of white chocolate featuring Hello Kitty, Garfield, and the Transformers. 
Say hello to a white chocolate Hello Kitty!

Chris poses next to white chocolate Garfield.
Whoever created this white chocolate Hello Kitty flower shop had a steady hand and a tremendous amount of patience.

Building three contained eerily accurate chocolate replicas of Chinese artifacts. Many of the displays were breathtaking. 

This picture of a tiny portion of the white chocolate Forbidden City does not do the display justice.
This building also had chocolate replicas of the zodiac animals!

These white chocolate chinese slippers looked real.  Check out the embroidery work detail.
This is not porcelain; it is more white chocolate!

The chocolate replicas of these emperors are HUGE!  They are standing on chocolate shavings.
This candy replica of a Chinese porcelain doll is precious!
Building four was devoted entirely to fashion!

As you walk in the building you are greeted by a life sized white chocolate car.
I wish I had a non candy version of this bag! :)

I want a candy perfume bottle.

I wish they had these in my size.

This gives a new meaning to candy necklace.

This kiddo was doing what everyone else wanted to do...smell the roses and touch some chocolate!

Building five was a plastic, acid inspired replica of the Garden of Eden. 
I am sure there were this many shrooms in the Garden of Eden.

Feed us chocolate!!!

At least the chocolate waterfall was real.  I felt like I was in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory!
The final building was chocolate heaven!  All I could smell was pure chocolate goodness!!!
This building was made entirely of chocolate bricks.

A white chocolate gladiator drives his chariot on milk chocolate shavings. 
In the back of the building I made my own Valentine’s Day Chocolates!!

Step 1:  I fill the rose mold with chocolate.

Step 2:  After the chocolate is dumped out to create the shell, I fill the molds with chocolate truffle filling!

I make a quality inspection!!!  Yummy!

Step 3:  I top off the mold with more chocolate.

Step 4:  After a 15 minute trip to the freezer, the chocolate is popped out of the mold.

Step 5:  The friendly chefs package the chocolate for consumption!!

I want to give you a couple of heads up about Happy Chocolate Land.  First, most of the signs and demonstrations were in Chinese only, so I had no idea how many of the items were made.  Luckily, the candy chefs pantomimed chocolate making instructions so I was able to participate in the fun. 

Also, the building is located in the old World Expo area so we had a lot of trouble finding a cab when we wanted to leave.  Luckily, Happy Chocolate Land has a shuttle that will take you to the Yaohua Metro station. I suggest taking the shuttle even if you are planning on taking a cab home.  It is MUCH easier to find a cab around the metro station. 

Overall, Happy Chocolate Land was a blast!  I highly recommend a visit, especially if you have kids.  Now go eat some chocolate!