On a late Sunday afternoon the lobbies, arcades, restaurants, and indoor waterparks at the new Camelback and Kalahari indoor waterpark resorts in the Poconos were bustling with energy. During my visit to these two new destination indoor waterpark resorts, I found nothing but short of excitement and memories in the making.
The Camelback is situated on a mountain out of sight from the main road, but once you begin to ascend up the mountain, the massive shell for the 125,000 square foot indoor waterpark quickly becomes visible. The resort officially opened on May 1, 2015 and has a total of 453 rooms. The exterior of the resort appears as a modern lodge with minimalistic theming. Inside of the indoor waterpark, known as Aquatopia, guests are transported to a place with thrill and adventure. After passing through the arcade and turnstiles, guests find themselves immersed in more than just one world. The Great Ka-Na-Gawa wave pool, Lost River lazy river, Penguin Play Bay, Mystic Springs spa, Bombora Flowrider, and 13 waterslides are uniquely themed around the fictitious explorer, Kartrite Van Der Berris. Natural light soaks through the translucent roof and signs posted around the waterpark advise guests sunscreen is highly recommended since the roof does not reduce the amount of UV. The waterpark is only for guests staying at the Camelback Lodge, and they also receive admission to Camelbeach, an outdoor waterpark nearby the indoor waterpark. An additional restaurant and new fitness center are anticipated to open in August. There is also a spa and ski-in and ski-out area being constructed so guests can seamlessly access the slopes then return to the resort for some indoor water play.
While driving on Interstate 380, the Kalahari Resort and Convention Center is clearly visible with a distinct African-themed exterior, just like its other locations. The resort opened on July 1, 2015. The approach to the resort is elaborately decorated with life-size animal statues, a large pond in front of the resort’s Porte Cochere, and plenty of sidewalks that roam around the resort. The theming continues throughout the lobby and public areas, giving guests a true sense of the African safari. The 100,000 square foot indoor waterpark has a retractable roof and some skylights for then the roof is closed during colder periods. There are a number of rides and attractions that incorporate the overall theme of the resort, including a Flowrider, lazy river, Anaconda water coaster, Lost Lagoon basketball pool, five waterslides, Splashdown Safari, and a swim-up bar. There is a second phase of the resort that is under construction that will add additional indoor waterpark space, guestrooms, and outdoor waterpark space. Outside visitors are permitted to purchase day passes, which ranges from $39 to $49 depending on the time of day the pass is purchased.