There is no shortage of accommodations in the Pocono Mountain region of Pennsylvania. Travelers and vacationers have a wide selection to choose from, including privately owned and chain Hotels & Motels, Bed & Breakfasts, Rental Cottages, Camping Facilities, Air B&Bs, and full-fledged Resorts.
Even within the category of resorts, there are multiple options. For adults, there are specialty destinations that cater to honeymoons and lovers, and those that are built around casinos and live entertainment. For families and the young at heart, there are four massive waterpark resorts. And for those that appreciate the compelling background of the region and how it became a vacation playground, there are several historic resorts in the area. Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort is a standout among them, offering several different types of accommodations and amenities all within one property.
Located on the shores of the Delaware River and surrounded by lush green Pocono Mountains, the Inn dates back to the late 1800’s when New Yorker C.C. Worthington, an inventor and outdoorsman, created a summer home in Shawnee. From there spawned an impressive colonial resort that, over the years, has hosted countless couples, families, and plenty of celebrities.
The fact that the inn has a Grand Lawn with an event pavilion is indicative of the era in which the resort was built. Just looking at it, it’s easy to envision turn of the century families gathering for picnics or croquet, men in 3 piece suits and hats, women in long dresses with sun parasols, with Model T Fords parked in the background.
If you can’t visualize a scene that far back in time, you might find yourself comparing Shawnee to Grove Park Inn, the resort featured in the movie Dirty Dancing. Indeed the look and vibe are similar.
Today, a section of the Grand Lawn acts a large putting green and the portion that extends to the riverbanks includes a campfire area in the midsection, a small beach with sun loungers to the right, and the larger area to the left plays host to outdoor weddings and live music events, with the stunning backdrop of the Delaware River. There is also a children’s playground.
The resort boasts 103 guest rooms and suites, each one of them unique in size and styling, each one offering a little piece of history, an aura of artistry with specialty furniture built strictly for Shawnee and bearing their symbol, and a ray of life with a different live plant on the desktop of each room.
Mixed with the colonial decor are modern upgrades that provide comfort and convenience such as air conditioning and small fridges, as well as all-natural soaps and shampoos found in the bathrooms. Rooms are slowly but surely undergoing renovations and upgrades with new hardwood flooring and decor. A double room sampling is shown below and more room selections can be seen below this article in our Tour of Shawnee Inn video.
Aside from the main inn, accommodations also include a modest 12-unit lodge, perfect for wedding parties wishing to stay close together, or those hosting or attending private events.
For a different type of vacation experience, rental cottages are also available on the property, allowing entire families to stay together with the benefit of more space and the privacy of separate bedrooms. Even the cottages provide options, with those close to the inn and some located in a private residential area near the golf course. One such cottage is The Worthington which is the flip side of the inn with very modern accommodations. (A more complete view of The Worthington interior can be seen below this article in our Tour of Shawnee Inn video).
For outdoorsy visitors wishing to take advantage of the very natural and beautiful setting of Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort, there is yet another accommodation option that is growing in popularity among travelers – Glamping!
Shawnee provides 2 distinct areas for glamping, each of which offers a different experience. Visitors can choose to remain close to the resort with access to all amenities or opt for more of a wilderness experience that includes a canoe trip to the secluded location. The latter option comes with a concierge that will help facilitate the experience, including coming to the campsite to cook meals and immediately remove any leftovers or garbage, thereby discouraging curious wildlife.
As for amenities, Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort is LOADED. Dining includes the River Room with a partial view of the golf course. It is here that guests can find a hearty breakfast buffet plus varied menu items for lunch and dinner. Attached is a small but convenient bar and lounge.
The Buckwood Cafe offers sandwiches and baked goods and is great for grabbing something quick and easy. For more of a dining experience, The Gem and Keystone is located at the entrance of the property. You can find a full review of the restaurant HERE.
All dining facilities make use of the fresh herbs and produce grown on 3 separate areas of Shawnee’s property, totaling 25,000 square feet. Farm to table signature dishes and baked goods are plentiful and memorable here.
Guests are never at a loss for something to do, no matter the season. In addition to an indoor pool, a fitness center, a small arcade for kids, and an onsite spa and salon featuring a myriad of spa services, visitors can also make use of skiing facilities in the winter months.
During spring and summer, visitors have access to on-site tennis courts as well as watersports on the Delaware River, including paddle boarding and canoeing. Sunset cruises up the river are also available. The area is rife with hiking trails if you are so inclined and, of course, there is a stunning 27-hole golf course designed by the famed A.W. Tillinghast. The course features 24 of its holes on a beautiful island with much in the way of wildlife and the Pocono Mountains as a backdrop. For a look of the course, please see our tour video HERE.
For golfers, there’s also a handy and spacious pro shop for clothing, equipment, cold drinks, and rentals. Just wandering the hallways of the inn will give you a glimpse of the history behind the course with plenty of photos from days gone by. Shawnee was one of the first golfing resorts of its time and assisted in founding the PGA with tournaments from 1916 to 1937. It also hosted the PGA Championship in 1938. Celebrities like Bob Hope, Ed Sullivan and Jackie Gleason often played the course and they show up in several of the hallway photos.
If you’re a history buff, hours can be spent checking out the black & white and sepia mages, not only of the course but of the inn itself and the original guests that frolicked on the Grand Lawn.
If you’re a beer lover, you’ll adore Shawnee’s most unique feature which is an onsite Craft Brewery that turns out several smooth and distinct flavors. The beer is sold locally and used in the resort’s dining facilities, not only as beverages but also as ingredients in sauces and dips. Tours of the brewery are available, all you have to do is ask.
As a matter of fact, the resort organizes plenty of daily and weekly activities for guests as well as visitors, such as concerts, bake sales, holiday dinners, and theatre in the local historic playhouse. There are also evening campfires where guests can make S’mores.
If you’re looking to host an event at Shawnee, the resort contains a large and versatile ballroom for weddings and events and can be seen in our video tour below.
Now that you know about the inn, we’re sure you want to know about the Pros and Cons.
PROS: Plenty of accommodation options available. Rooms are clean and well maintained. There is much in the way of amenities and things to do, during all seasons, both on the property and nearby. Staff is very helpful and friendly. Personalized service. The scenery is beautiful. Modest rates, even during peak season. Shawnee is the only resort in the area that does not charge a daily resort fee. The resort is environmentally friendly, with ‘Green Pledge’ to recycle, offer all natural soaps and shampoos, turn off lights when rooms are not occupied and monitor climate control systems to conserve energy. This is a complete resort experience.
CONS: This doesn’t actually fall into the category of a ‘con’ but it might if you go with unreasonable expectations. The fact is, this is a ‘historic’ property so to say it’s showing its age is unfair. The fact is, the resort has done well to incorporate as many modern facilities as possible within the confines of a 100+year old inn, such as a fitness room, spa, indoor pool, etc. Though some of these facilities may be small or somewhat dated, they have been included to give guests as much choice as possible, all under one roof.
Please enjoy our video tour of the Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort.