We used to come to Woodloch every year when we were growing up, starting in the early 80's. It was a great place, great food, great staff, clean rooms, fun activities.
Then after not being there for about 10 years, was a major shock from the minute I first arrived. Please keep in mind this place is not cheap and attracts well to do families. These well to do families have to park their expensive cars on grass and mud, under trees, since the parking lots are very small and always full.
Pulling into the main entrance drive, looked pretty much the same as it has for the last 30 years. Nothing fancy,but nice. As you pull in, you can notice about 100 cheap looking picnic tables stacked in back of one of the hotel building. I feel sorry for the people staying in those buildings. All they get is a view of picnic tables. Now, those picnic tables are for their "famous cookout". The food is good, nothing special, and those picnic tables are gross! Also, you have to bus your own tables at the cookout. Not that I mind, but when a family of 4 is paying close to $2000 per day for a vacation, I would like someone to clear the table. Also, year after year, it is the exact same food, same location, on the muddy grass(it rained earlier that day). Although the concept is nice, maybe they can change the venue, perhaps a lake front cookout.
The rest of the time you are eating your meals in the "Main Dining Room". Again, nothing special, it is dated and dark, with worn out carpeting, cheezy folding tables, and uncomfortable seats. The food is better then average, but I would not say gourmet. For breakfast, they make it a point of saying "no omelettes". Are you kidding, $2000/day and you specifically tell me I can not order an omelette?? Woodloch, every hotel and most motels offer a omelette bar!!! Time for some changes. The servers are pleasant, although sometimes you are waiting a while to be served.
The same old games and activities since the 80's. The same cheezy games and activities happen like clockwork year after year. The horseracing games were always fun and exciting when we used to come 25 years ago. Now when you go it is very hard to stay the whole time, very boring. It is just an example of the activities that never change or at least get upgraded. Time for a major overhaul of the activities. First timers however, may find it exciting. If you like Bingo, you'll love Woodloch, they play it at least once a day. Snooze fest! reminds me of a nursing home. The lake is very nice and pretty. They still have paddle boats, sunfish sailboats, row boats and kayaks. Woodloch please get some of those 3 big wheeled bicycle boats. Start updating and changing some things. Also, they seem to be charging extra for alot more activities then they used to. IE the zipline and segway. I guess they are trying to slowly move away from inclusive. Yikes!
The outdoor shuffleboard, bocce ball, and mini golf courses are an absolute disgrace! Broken, missing equippment, and run down courts. The mini golf course by the lake should be totally ripped out and redone. No one even uses it. Some new activities, since the last time I was here, include bumper boats, bumper cars, a game room, a gym, and a indoor forest playground. The new buildings that house these activities look like big gray sheds. Far from fancy or luxary. Go carts were always my favorite when I was younger, they still have them, but your have to wait on a line a half hour long to use them, as there are only 5 at a time. NIghttime entertainment is held in the night club, which is over crowded and again uncomfortable. The "theme night" shows used to star actual woodloch employees, which was nice and fun. Now they have some company doing the show, and it is Blah. Oh lets not, forget the stale popcorn on the tables in the nightclub. I cant believe it has come to this, all for so much money!
The rooms are very nice and clean and updated, as long as you stay in Springbrook or Mountain Laurel. The older units are very dated and run down, although they area very clean. If you would like to view picnic tables stacked out your back window, stay in the Gateway units.
All in all, I have to say that Woodloch was once a great place to go. They still have an incredible list of loyal and repeat guests, who probably dont see the slow decay of the facility and services. First timers will see from the minute they get there that the whole place just looks tired and run down. New fresh eyes see things that people who work there everyday may not see or realize.
I will say that I had an overall good time, but could not believe how much money I was shelling out for just "OK" service.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- This exceptional Poconos resort, nestled in a pristine mountain lake setting, is regarded as one of America's "Best All-Inclusive Family Resorts". Their traditional warm hospitality has been nurturing and embracing the spirit of spending quality time with family and friends for over fifty years. This Pocono Mountains resort provides a four-season, fun-filled, lakeside escape for your entire family with endless activities and entertainment for all kids from 2 to 92. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Woodloch Pines Hotel Hawley
- Woodloch Pines Hawley