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“Positives and Negatives”

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Mountain Laurel Resort & Spa
Ranked #4 of 6 Hotels in White Haven
Grove City, OH
Level Contributor
46 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 114 helpful votes
“Positives and Negatives”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 13 June 2010

Traveling with my husband, we stayed at the Mountain Laurel Resort & Spa June 5-12, 2010, and we stayed in a one-bedroom, two-bath time share unit (Unit #216). It was located well for two family events we had that week, and it has very easy freeway access, as it is right off of Exit 95 of the PA turnpike (NE Ext).

The property is older and has changed hands several times according to the activities representive who gave the orientationn on Monday morning. This is somewhat obvious. It is now owned by the same entity as Split Rock (called its "sister resort"), but Mountain Laurel is clearly the step-sister. Having said that, overall, we were comfortable during our stay and had no really major problems with the faciilities.

The Positives - as mentioned, it has easy on/off interstate access, it was clean, our bed was fairly comfortable, there was plenty of storage, the setting is beautiful, and there is especially a lot to do for families or children approx. 8-14 in age, such as tennis, basketball, fishing, paddleboats, a horse stable with kind of a petting zoo, hiking, shuffleboard, and an indoor and outdoor pool. It is easy to get to a great many attactions in the Poconos, including Delaware Water Gap, Bushkill Falls (very pretty), casinos, and shopping. There is a decent restaurant with good service in the resort, but it was closed Mon-Wed of our stay. However, guests at Mountain Laurel can use some facilities and attactions at the Split Rock Resort, and the Split Rock Resort has several restaurants (Split Rock is located about 5 miles away). Check-in and check-out were easy, and although we were told that if we lost "the binder" (they give this to you upon check-in), we would be charged $25.

The activities representative gave a thorough but very long-winded presentation on Monday morning regarding area attractions. Part of the problem was that the temperature in the room was approximately 60 degrees, and no one could seem to figure out how to adjust the AC. The rep rather did go on and on with details that were not relevant to most guests, giving step by step directions to each and every attraction and restaurant she referenced as she went. This would have been better accomplished by noting the destination and having guests get directions from either the activities dept or the front desk at a later time if they were indeed interested. But the rep was pleasant and helpful, and they provided nice refreshments for the briefing.

The resort has a very decent fitness facility - another positive.

The Negatives - Mountain Laurel is very dated and it shows. The decor is 1980's, and the parking lots are cracked and pot-holed and in need of repaving. Also, Mountain Laurel has no hot tub/spa available to their regular guests, either at the indoor or outdoor pools. As a time share owner, we were told we could use the hot tubs in the Spa area; however, neither was working when we were there. I really don't understand how a resort in a ski area, particularly, has no hot tub. Disappointing. Also, the time share units are basically hotel rooms that were joined together. While in and of itself, this is no problem, there were some inconveniences, such as no outlet whatsoever in the second bathroom, and it does make for a somewhat odd layout of the unit.

The resort only has wi-fi in the hotel lobby and in one restaurant. This was disappointing and inconvenient and seemed very "behind the times".

The aforementioned binder seriously needs to be rewritten, from simply a PR standpoint, if nothing else. A whole page is dedicated to detailing to guests how, basically, if they are unhappy with anything or mistakes are made by staff, that's too bad, because they are not in a position to do anything about it other than apologize. While I understood their position, a simple line or paragraph would have sufficed. Another thing is that they seem overly obsessed with guests stealing from their rooms. They make clear in the binder that everything is inventoried and include a price list of what they will charge should something like a coffee cup go missing. It's a little over the top, and makes one wonder if the property is frequented by petty thieves and crooks.

Our biggest negative issue during out stay was downright incompetence by the activities department, and then the front desk, regarding our planned chartered bus trip to NYC. We were the first ones to sign up for this trip (it occurs on Thursdays) and checked with activities staff no fewer than seven times regarding the details, such as where the bus would pick up, how many others were going, and the fact that we would be out of the area until very late on Wednesday night at a family member's graduation, so if there were any changes to the trip plans, they would need to leave us a message at the front desk (phone light flashes when this occurs). I personally checked as late as 1:00 p.m. on Wednesday, when we were told that pick up time would be at 6:30 the next morning in the lobby. No message was waiting for us when we returned late that night, so we arrived in the lobby for the trip the next morning at 6:21. It became quickly clear that the trip has left without us, and when I tried to get assistance from the front desk rep, she simply shrugged and basically told me that there was nothing she could do about it.

My husband, being a resourceful person, then immediately contacted the tour company (the number was on our receipt), who told us that we could drive to another resort and meet up with the bus if we left right away. The tour rep did the best he could with directions, but they were sketchy, and we took off on a 35 mile trip to try to meet the bus. We did make it (thank heavens for GPS), and had a great day in NYC (at $69/pp, the trip is a nice one). But this was no credit whatsoever to the resort staff. Firstly, they changed the pick up time without notifying us to 6:15, and then gave the tour bus guide a list of names which did not include ours, although we were the first ones to sign up and had in fact, already paid for it. Secondly, once the mistakes happened, the front desk did nothing to assist us. What would have been ideal (other than not making the first mistakes) is if the front desk rep had known to phone the tour bus company and advise them that we would be meeting the bus, and would have been able to hand us printed turn-by-turn directions to the other resorts where the bus also picks up that morning. While the NYC trip was a highlight of our stay, the way the resort handled it was definitely a low point.

I did indulge in one spa treatment when we were there - a pedicure. It was okay, but overpriced (about $20 more than I pay at my local spa) and the effort was rather tepid. I would suggest avoiding the spa treatments, as they largely seemed very overpriced.

All in all, however, we enjoyed a fairly comfortable week, and although I don't believe we would return, we would not advise that there are not worthwhile elements of the resort, and it was a quiet and well-located destination. We both commented that it would have been a nice place when our sons were younger, as there is a lot for kids to run around and do. If we have occasion to be in that area again, however, we would probably stay at Split Rock.

  • Stayed June 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
11 Thank IrishEyes0421
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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421 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (45)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 April 2010

This place screams Holiday Inn 1970. The decor is dated, the rooms are not clean and no one bothered to check my unit before giving me a key. The tub/shower faucet in the master bathroom did not even emit water. Many lightbulbs were burned out. It was just plain gross. I travel every week for business and traded for this place as I had a timeshare week about to expire and I had business in the area. I haved learned not to do this again. There was a group either of some type of transients or migrant workers below me who carried on yelling/screaming and slamming doors most of the night and into the wee hours of the morning. The "security" was to address the behavior, but it took more than one attempt. They offered to move me--so the customer not creating the disturbance would have to be inconvenienced. Wow. Then when I offered some feedback, indicating the online pictures were misleading as was the use of the term "resort" they did not want to hear it. I left on Thursday (April 29) because I couldn't stand it. The woman at the desk asked me how everything was I replied, "terrible" and then amended it to "ridiculous." She didn't offer to get the manager or to ask for more details. RUN FROM THIS PLACE -- I was in the area on business. If this had been a vacation I would have been very very angry. I am going to rent "The Shining" as it has been a while since I have seen it. I may draw some comparisons.

  • Stayed April 2010, travelled on business
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    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank CHMpgh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers are raving about these White Haven hotels

New York
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 April 2010

This place was probably amazing in 1978. It is verrrrrrrry outdated. picture plastic furniture with gold trim. I am also pretty sure we were the only couple at the resort.

The bar was also out of the 80's, the tv in the bar had a dial to change the channels. The locks on the rooms had keys.

We ended our stay a day early.

I do have to admit the spa was not too bad (which is a new addition).

Be advised, stay far far away from this place!!!

  • Stayed April 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank kennyk2104
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Milwaukee
Level Contributor
32 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 February 2010

We did an exchange foe 2 two bedroom units for a family reunion. The rooms, while not fancy, were clean and more than adequate. The place had enough activities to keep all os entertained. We've booked rooms for the 2010 season.

  • Stayed July 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank ppastor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Warwick Township
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 February 2010

OK ...... so most of the reviews are not so great. I just want to let people know that we (a family group) had a fun and relaxing time at Mountain Laurel Resort. The staff was accommodating, friendly and professional. Lots of space for a large group. Enough entertainment to keep all ages happy. The spa is truly awesome!!!! Friendly bar with a nice atmosphere. Kids were very happy with the pool. Our two bedroom unit was large, clean and well equipped. If you want a 5 + star resort .. look elsewhere. If you want a resort that provides everything you need to have a wonderful vacation and does not cost you a bundle ... look and book at Mountain Laurel.

  • Stayed January 2010
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank ilovejulie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
NJ
1 review
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 December 2009

Just recently stayed there with family and extended family and ALL of us got the stomach flu after swimming in the pool! The water tastes like people's sweat and the smell of chlorine hits you as soon as open the hallway doors. Filters in the heater/ac units were DISGUSTING! Dust was also ridiculous- if you have dust allergies- beware! I am in no way a snotty traveler, I am a person of simple needs- but yet- this was not the way we wanted to spend our holiday.

  • Stayed December 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank echo777
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
NJ
Level Contributor
115 reviews
112 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 391 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 December 2009

We exchange through II into this Pocono timeshare with the short stay exchange program. This is the first time we have used this new system in II. We find it useful for booking long Holiday weekend. Check-in was very quick. They allowed us to get into our unit at two o’clock. 375 was the farthest unit you can possibly get in the entire resort from the lobby/indoor pool/spa and activity area. Anyone who wants to avoid a five block walk through dim and narrow hallway/stairway should ask for a room close to the lobby.

The 1 bedroom unit is actually nice and big. This unit will sleep four to six comfortably. There is 2 queen size bed and a pull out sofa bed. 2 full baths, 2 TVs, a lot closet for storage. For anyone who object to a converted hotel timeshare. This resort did a good job with the conversion. I have been in many in Cape Cod that is much, much worst. Room has a double size balcony. The full kitchen has full size refrigerator, stove, microwave, oven, toaster and coffee machine. It also has all the pots, pans, plates, bowls and utensil you will need to fix a meal. The supermarket is about ten minute drives away. The dining area counter have sitting for four. Furniture and kitchen equipment in the unit is good quality and maintained well. There is not washer and dryer in the unit. Coin laundry is close to the lobby. Carpet is in okay condition. The worst is the TV. They are small and cable reception is horrible. There is no internet in the room, only in the lobby area.

The resort offers many activities for kids and adult. There is a recreation center that you can check-out sports equipment and games. There is pool table, archery, basketball, arcade, tennis and many more. There is small library of books. The indoor and outdoor pool is very nice. Hot tub and sauna is part of the spa and is very nice. Two restaurants and one coffee shop are close to the lobby. A small pond looks very nice in the fall and there is a full service stable with many nice horses and a small zoo. You can also use the facility at Split Rock about 3 miles away. Split Rock has Theatre, bowling alley, big arcade and an amazing indoor water park with flo-riding equipment. It is great. Guest of Mount Laurel gets 10% off admission.

Resort is close to Jack Frost Ski area and about twenty minutes from Crossing outlet. It is also close to a few state parks. We spend an afternoon in Jim Thorpe. It is a very cute town. We cook most of our meals in the room. The restaurant we will recommend is Nick’s Lake House. The food is good and the view of the lake is very nice. We also ate at Ugly Mug. This place is a little out of the way and is very strange like a biker’s pub but the food is very good and inexpensive.

  • Stayed November 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank schong
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Mountain Laurel Resort & Spa

Property: Mountain Laurel Resort & Spa
Address: 81 Treetops Drive, White Haven, PA 18661
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Pennsylvania > Pocono Mountains Region > Luzerne County > White Haven
Amenities:
Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 6 Hotels in White Haven
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:2 star — Mountain Laurel Resort & Spa 2*
Number of rooms: 175
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Mountain Laurel Hotel White Haven
Mountain Laurel Resort And Spa
Mountain Laurel White Haven
Mountain Laurel Resort Spa

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