Since the discovery of the cocoa bean and its use for making chocolate, many have attempted to be the finest chocolatier in the world. However, when fine chocolate is being discussed, there is one name that stands out from the rest. That name is Godiva. Considered one of the world’s premium chocolates for almost 100 years, Godiva’s history is both unique and charming. And part of this charming history is because of the chocolates namesake, Lady Godiva.
Lady Godiva was famous for helping the oppressed people whom her husband ruled over. She begged him to remove the burdening tax that was too much for the people to bear, but he refused. The story is told that her husband finally agreed to lift the tax if she accepted a challenge- she had to ride through the town naked. She accepted the challenge and was soon galloping on her horse through the town streets with no clothes on. As promised, her husband lifted the tax and Lady Godiva became a legend.
About Godiva Chocolates
In 1926, a man from Belgium by the name of Joseph Draps began making a variety of exquisitely divine chocolates. He wanted to sell them under a name that was bold, but also passionate and graceful. He chose the name Godiva.
Because mass production of chocolate was already prevalent at the time Draps began creating his, he quickly and successfully opened his first store of fine chocolates in Brussels in 1926. Draps was also a thriving chocolatier not only because of the delicacies he made, but because of the hand crafted packaging they were sold in, which quickly became a staple of the Godiva brand.
After much success in Brussels, Draps was able to open a second Godiva store in 1958 on the famous Rue St. Honore in Paris, France. Soon after this opening, Godiva was introducing stores all over Europe. Finally, in 1966 Americans got a taste of this purveyor of fine chocolates when it was sold in lavish department stores. By the year 1972, New York City’s 5th Avenue was the host of the first Godiva store to open in the United States. North America is now home to over 275 Godiva boutiques.
Originally, Godiva sold nothing more than fancy chocolate gifts in fashionable packages. Today, they have an extensive line of food that includes baked desserts, coffee, biscuits, ice cream, truffles, wedding favors and party favors. Now, with over 450 boutiques worldwide, their chocolates being sold in specialty retail stores around the world, and the ability to buy Godiva online and over the telephone, it’s easier than ever to treat yourself and your loved ones to this delicacy. Our personal favorite indulgence is the Godiva gift baskets, filled with unique treats like Godiva Gems, hot cocoa, and signature biscuits.