Welcome to the Hotel Transylvania, Dracula's (Adam Sandler) lavish five-stake resort, where monsters and their families can live it up, free from meddling from the human world. But here's a little known fact about Dracula: he is not only the Prince of Darkness; he is also a dad. Over-protective of his teenage daughter, Mavis (Selena Gomez), Dracula fabricates tales of elaborate dangers to dissuade her adventurous spirit. As a haven for Mavis, he opens the Hotel Transylvania, where his daughter and some of the world's most famous monsters - Frankenstein and Eunice, his bride, Murray the Mummy, Griffin the Invisible Man, Wayne and his family of werewolves, and more - can kick back in safety and peace. For Drac, catering to all of these legendary monsters is no problem - but his world could come crashing down when one ordinary guy stumbles on the hotel and takes a shine to Mavis.
In 1898, Dracula has been raising his daughter, Mavis, on his own since the death of his wife, Martha. He is overprotective of her, keeping Mavis inside, and making her fear humans through scary stories. While teaching Mavis how to fly, Dracula learns that consturction on his lavish 5 star hotel for monsters has been completed. Hotel Transylvania is surrounded by a cemetery that zombies reside in and 400 yards of haunted forest, ensuring humans dare not even get close. The hotel also doubles as a sanctuary, where Dracula can raise his daughter in peace.
In 2012, monsters from around the world, including Dracula's friends - Frank, Murrary, Wayne and Griffin - arrive to celebrate Mavis's 118th birthday. Before the guests are allowed to enjoy the activities, Dracula presents a slideshow of 21st century humans that his staff has collected. Unaware that humans no longer believe monsters exist, Dracula makes incorrect assumptions that the changes in human culture are to better their ability to destroy them. Dracula then goes to visit Mavis, who has not aged past her teenage years; he gives her permission to go see a nearby human village for the next half hour, since he promised her 30 years ago. However, Drac's friends are against the idea, still believing humans to be violent savages. Frank, however, supports Dracula allowing Mavis the freedom to see the outside world. They all wish Mavis luck as she flies off.
Dracula quickly follows after Mavis, arriving in the village before her and hiding in the shadows. Mavis arrives shortly after and is awed by the sight, until an angry mob quickly begins surrounding her; she tries making peace with them. One of the humans behind her loses his head, revealing him and the group to be zombies under Dracula's employ. Drac corrects the problem before Mavis can notice. However, the zombies' bumbling causes them to catch fire. Mavis asks how she can help, but ultimately gives up and flies back to the hotel. Drac is left happy his daughter will now be forever safe, ordering the zombies to tear down the fake village and get back to work at the hotel.
Upon returning to the hotel, Dracula comforts Mavis, feigning surprise at what she experienced. He gives Mavis her favorite meal, wormcakes, hoping to cheer her up. Returning to the lobby, Dracula is left shocked when a human young man enters the hotel; he quickly traps the human in the revolving door. Drac questions the human, learning his name is Jonathan and that he followed the burning zombies to the hotel. Shocked, Dracula remembers the foreman's warning about bonfires and fireworks, and his zombie's blunder in scaring Mavis. Attempting to get rid of Jonathan, Drac finds more guests arriving; he is forced to hide in the supply closet with him. Dracula quickly searches Johnny's hiking pack for weapons, only to be repelled by a shirt that badly needs to be washed. Not wanting to set monster progress backwards by killing Jonathan, Dracula then worries about Mavis meeting Johnny and realising that humans may not be the evil villains he made them out to be. As Johnny inspects uniforms, Dracula quickly uses a large jacket and some spray paint to disguise him as a monster from the Stein family.
However, before he can get Johnny out of the hotel, Dracula is bothered by the head chef, Quasimodo, about the food for the party. Quasi's pet rat, Esmeralda, catches Johnny's scent on Dracula; telling Quasimodo he got the hurr devurs wrong, Drac subtly smacks Emseralda into an elevator. Blundering, Jonathan discovers he's surrounded by monsters and accidently grabs hold of a witch's broom, zooming around the lobby. He accidently crashes into Mavis, knocking her off the stairs. When they both get up, they notice each other as pink light flashes over their eyes. Drac quickly sees to Mavis, who only says "that was weird". As Johnny recovers, Mavis wonders who he is; Drac insists that he's no-one important. Johnny then freaks out when he learns who Dracula is.
Drac quickly takes Johnny away to an empty room to avoid the guests' attention. Jonathan worries that Dracula will drink his blood, but Drac explains that he drinks blood substitutes since human blood is fatty "and you never know where it's been." When Johnny wonders what the hotel is for, Drac gives a long-winded speech about the reason why he built it. Dracula changes into a bat to fly Jonathan out of the hotel. However, they run into Mavis, also in bat form; Drac quickly takes Johnny back inside, telling him to play along in exchange for his backpack. Dracula quickly lies that Jonathan is someone he recruited to improve Mavis's birthday party since he's the same age. Upon learning Mavis is 118, Johnny lies that he's 121. A suit of armor announces something is wrong in the hotel, but Dracula is too occupied with Johnny; he quickly comes up with some babble to get Mavis to leave.
Dracula leads Johnny into a secret passage; he had it built as an escape route in case an angry mob of humans ever managed to invade Hotel Transylvania. However, Drac hasn't been down there recently and is having trouble finding the correct exit. On his third attempt, Drac opens the entrance to the lounge, where Frank, Murrary, Griffin and Wayne are attacking zombies Mozart, Beetoven and Bach. Noticed by his friends, Drac learns they wanted to practice their big number for the party and the zombies refused to get off stage. Mavis finds Johnny and introduces herself. Johnny then says he's Frank's cousin - "Johnnystein"; working with Drac, Johnny quickly lies that he's specificly the cousin of Frank's right arm. Continuing the lie of being a party planner, Johnny decides to see how good Drac's friends are; he finds their musical talent "good, but a little old school." Borrowing Murrary's guitar, Johnny improvises a rock song for Mavis, impressing her and the crowd; everyone wants Johnny to help with something, but Dracula says they have to stay on schedule. Annoying Drac, eveyone wants Johnny to join in.
The next activity is Bingo, where everyone but Dracula is bored; Eunice gets on Bingo one of her fives cards, but it's eaten by a gremlin lady. Following this is Charades in the gymnasium; the Fly and Griffin are performing to two seperate circles of monsters, while everyone else sits on the bleachers. Everyone, especially Mavis and Johnny are bored. Humerously, Griffin doesn't realise the reason he's bad at charades is that he's invisible. Johnny produces a scooter from his backpack and rides around the gym with it, amazing the crowd. Murrary, Wayne and Wanda's kids, and others try out the scooter; a giant monster trips on the scooter, crushing a zombie waiter and falling through a wall.
At the pool, the Fly leads an aquatic exercise class, where they attempt mimicing his vomit habit until he corrects them. Dracula watches Jonathan talk to Mavis, Murrary and Eunice, but is bothered again by Quasimodo. Esmeralda catches Johnny's scent again, prompting Drac to once more discretely smack her away; Esmeralda lands in Eunice's hair, but has trouble getting out. Johnny surprises everyone with his claim to have been to the Taj Mahal, which no monster has ever been to. Mavis is estatic to hear about Johnny's travels, but wonders how he dealt with the mobs; likening "mob" to "crowd", Johnny says he "just rolls with it". Dracula takes Johnny away under the pretense of discussing party plans; he orders Johnny to fake a back injury to excuse himself from the hotel. However, miscommunication leads to a Chiken Fight in the pool. Drac notices the paint he put on Johnny is washing off, but falls into the pool when he attempts pulling Johnny out. Frustrated, Drac pulls the pool's plug as Johnny cannonballs from high up; exhasperated, Drac momentarily freezes Johnny while moving a blob monster underneath to cushin the fall.
Early the next morning, Dracula takes Johnny to the cemetery bordering the hotel; he's angry with the "chaos" Johnny brought to the hotel. However, Johnny defends himself, saying the guests were actualy having fun for once; Dracula thinks otherwise, only believing that fun can happen in an orderly fashion. Dracula then attempts to hypnotise Johnny into forgetting about the hotel and never returning; however, he fails unexpectedly thanks to Jonathan's contact lenses. Too disgusted by sight of Johnny trying to remove the lenses, Dracula instead threatens to drain Johnny dry of his blood if he ever tells humans of the hotel. Johnny proceeds to do so, annoyed that Dracula kicked him out for living up the hotel's boring activities; however, Mavis finds him and convinces him to follow her to roof of the hotel. Johnny is amazed by the sight, telling Mavis more about his travels and amazing her. As the sun begins rising, Johnny realises Mavis has never seen a sunrise before since the sunlight burns vampires. Cleverily, Johnny quickly hides Mavis in the shade of a chimney's shadow, allowing her to watch the sunrise safely. However, he falls through a weak part of the roof, landing in the sauna Dracula and his friends were in.
Aggrivated that Johnny has disregarded his warnings, Drac tasks him with moving the dinning hall's tables. Upon learning they're magical, and move via instruction, Johnny decides to float on one while Dracula arranges the others. Annoyed, Drac crashes another table into Johnny's, causing him to fall down. Johnny immediately gets on another one and attempts ramming Drac as payback; however, Drac evades it. Searching for Dracula, Johnny discovers the Count on a table, upside down. In the hallway, Esmeralda continues tracking the human scent for Quasimodo, who wants to make "human potpie". Drac chases after him and attempts to block Johnny's path with other tables; however, Johnny easily jumps from his tables and through the barracade, landing on another. Drac copies him, but misses a table; however, Johnny catches him and the table races out into the hallway. They end up crashing into a suit of armor. Drac laughs, realising that Johnny WAS improving his boring activities. However, he finds Johnny gone; Drac then sees Quasimodo's footprints, taking off after the deranged chef.
However, Drac runs into Mavis; he's confused as to why she's still up, since the sun can kill her. When she asks if he knows where Johnny is, Drac wonders if she likes him; he then cringes upon hearing his daughter finds Johnny adorable. Dracula then orders the suits of armor to stop Quasimodo before he can reach the kitchen, while he talks with Mavis. Unfortunately, Quasi eludes the armor, who were backed up by the gargoyle waiters. In the meantime, Dracula is surprised that Mavis has changed her view on love when she mentions that she'll get married and leave the hotel one day. An armor reports their failure to Drac, prompting him to rush off to save Johnny. In the kitchen, Quasimodo is cooking Johnny rotisiery style. Drac quickly barges in and frees Johnny. Quasi is confused as to why Drac is helping a human, but is told that Johnny is a Stein; to prove this, the hunchback challenges Johnny to scare Esmeralda. Johnny attempts doing so, but Esmeralda remains unfazed. Dracula quickly freezes Quasimodo to silence him.
Drac takes Johnny to his room, where Johnny recognises a woman in a large portait as the "Lady Labov". Johnny then surprises him by explaining the ruins of Castle Labov hold the legend that the Lady fell in love with a lonely Count, and had a child. However, a mysterious fire killed them one night. Dracula explains the legend is wrong; only the wife died. He pulls a curtain off the other half of the portrait, revealing himself holding her hand; the woman in the legend was Martha. Dracula explains humans killed her, and that he built Hotel Transylvania to shelter Mavis from harm. However, Mavis now has feelings for Johnny; Drac thinks their relationship could be possible if the world was different. Johnny explains people in the 21st century aren't like the ones from the past; however, Dracula asks if Johnny is certain that all humans would be able to accept monsters if they came into the open. Seeing the portait and now knowing of the pain Dracula feels, Johnny changes his mind and decides to leave to keep Mavis safe. However, Dracula persuades him to leave after the party, so as to not ruin Mavis's birthday.
That evening, all the guests and employees dance in the dining hall, with Frank, Griffin, Wayne and Murrary playing music. Johnny uses magical fireflies to show Mavis all the places he's been in the world, which include Paris, New York, Moscow, Hawaii. As Dracula enters the hall, the guests all congradulate him on the party, saying he's outdone himself; he joins in the dancing, earning cheers from the crowd. In the meantime, Mavis dances with Johnny; she stops and closes in on him, kissing Johnny. A suit of armor points this out to Dracula, who is shocked. Dracula furiously rushes over and sepereates them, believing Johnny to have kissed Mavis, instead of the other away around. Mavis reveals that she wants to give the outside world another chance, having been inspired by Johnny. However, Dracula accidently reveals he built the town she visited the night before to scare her into staying at the hotel. Making the situtaion worse, a still-frozen Quasimodo is wheeled into the hall by Esmeralda, trying to explain the truth about Johnny. The Fly translates the frozen language, while Esmeralda removes Johnny's disguise. While everyone panics, Mavis doesn't care if Johnny's human; she still wants to be with him. Remembering Dracula's earlier threat, Johnny lies that he hates monsters and leaves. Mavis blames her father before flying out of the hall. The guests leave to pack their luggage.
Dracula later finds Mavis on the roof; she asks him to erase her mind to forget Johnny, but he refuses. Mavis shows him the gift Martha left for her 118th birthday, a book with the story about how her parents met; they crashed into each other as bats and felt a Zing, which is a once-in-a-lifetime "love at first sight". Mavis confesses that she thought she Zinged with Johnny, something that shocks Dracula. With her dreams crushed, Mavis tells her father that there's no more reason for her to try leaving the hotel; she returns to her room, heartbroken. A horrified Dracula realises that he ruined his daughter's only chance at true love.
The next morning, all the guests are trying to leave. Dracula tries calming them, but they respond negatively to him. Overcome by guilt, Dracula explains Johnny was a good guy, and that he actualy has no idea if humans are bad anymore; Frank backs him up on Johnny's character. Dracula explains that Mavis Zinged with Johnny, and that he ruined things with his overprotectiveness. Frank, Griffin, Wayne and Murrary join Drac in a cab, as they race to find Johnny. They come accross one of Johnny's shirts in the haunted forest; however, Wayne has lost most of his sense of smell due to changing diapers. Wayne calls on his daughter Winnie, who sniffs the shirt and is able to deduce that Johnny is leaving on a 8:00 AM flght, which is only in 15 minutes.
Continuing on into a human town, Drac and the others are confused by a sign advertising a "Monster Festival"; they are shocked to find humans dressed up as monsters and several banners with pun-related cheers for them. Unfortunately, the way to the airport is blocked. Griffin uses Frank's pyrophobia to try scaring the humans; however, they cheer as they idolize the monsters. Frank explains the situation, and several humans dressed as vampires uses their capes to provide shade for Dracula all the way to the airport. Unfortunately, the good luck ends there as Dracula catches sight of Johnny in the window of a departing plane.
Risking his life, Dracula turns into a bat and flies after the plane. He gets to Johnny's window, succesfuly getting his attention; however, they are unable to understand each other due to the thick glass and wind. Dracula flies in front of the plane and smashes against the window fo the cockpit. Seeing the pilot using the intercom, Dracula hynotises him and uses the intercom to apologise to Johnny, explaining that he made a terrible mistake by making him leave; he wants Mavis to be happy, and is happy himself if the person she loves is a kind person like Johnny. Dracula then has the pilot turn the plane around, saying they need to refuel; humerously, he tells the passengers to quit complaining as he's burning up in the sunlight.
At the hotel, Mavis sulks in the shadows of her room. Still smoking, Dracula crash-lands through her window, dismissing his condition as "a little sunburn". Drac explains he thought it would be terrible for Mavis to leave; however, he now knows that her unhappiness is even worse. He presents a pink hiking bag with the hotel's logo, saying it's his birthday gift to her. Mavis wonders why she would need it, until Dracula presents its accessory: Jonathan. Johnny explains that the Zing she felt for him was mutual, and that the reason he claimed to hate monsters was that her father threatend to drain him dry of blood. Though initially dismissing the diea, Drac confesses to saying that; however, he admits to being wrong, telling Mavis to find her own paradise.
Mavis and Jonathan attempt another kiss, prompting Dracula to react negatively with a snarl; however, he promptly apologises and excuses himself. That night, another party is held to celebrate Mavis's birthday, and her relationship with Johnny. Perhaps as punishment for nearly ruining both Mavis and Jonathan's lives, Quasimodo remains frozen; Wayne and Wanda's kids lick him.
Mavis, Jonathan, Murrary, Frank, Griffin and Wayne sing a rap song about Zinging. Dracula approaches the stage, and is offered by Johnny the chance to join in; though refusing as first, Drac joins in and raps quite well. Mavis and Jonathan are shocked; he looks at her with a smile, while Mavis shrugs. Finishing a verse, Drac freezes everyone on stage briefly and freezes them again to get most of the last verse to himself. They all fly off on magic tables as the crowd of guests chant along with them and fireworks go off over the hotel.