Mount Airy Casino Resort is one of those places I remember passing during my family trips to the Poconos as a child, so hubby and I packed our bags and made a quick trip for a Valentine’s Day getaway. A fast commute at less than two hours from NYC, we drove along the mountains on the coldest weekend of the winter.
We used to visit the Poconos very often as a child, and I had visions of a champagne tower jacuzzi in the center of the room when we arrived. But I was so wrong.
WHERE TO STAY – Mount Airy Casino Resort
Mount Airy Casino Resort is a self-contained lodge with all of the fixings – a hotel, a casino, restaurants, spas, and parties. We slept comfortably in both beds the entire weekend (one was designated for eating room service, one was for sleeping). We snuck a peek into a suite while walking down the hallway and saw how massive it was – a large sitting room with a bar and a dining area. I was pleasantly surprised by how renovated the hotel was. Because of the jingles from my youth, I was expecting something totally dated but it was the equivalent of a nice Sheraton hotel (which happens to be my favorite).
The bathroom had a double showerhead, one that was a waterfall, and glass doors. There was a separate toilet room and a beautiful vanity in between. Not to mention a Keurig – you know I need my coffee!
WHERE TO EAT
At the time we visitedMount Airy Casino Resort, I was a few weeks into my gluten-free diet transition. I knew going into the weekend that I’d be eating gluten so I’d prepared myself for it. With that being said, by the end of the weekend I was very sick but some of the food was worth it!
The food here reminded me very much of what I’d have at an Applebee’s restaurant, but elevated a couple of levels. Everything was pretty good – the buffalo wings were spicy, the tacos had lots of flavor, and both hubby and I got steak and fries. My steak was painfully overcooked (I asked for medium and it was well done), but other than that I enjoyed the meal. The drinks were a great way to start off our first night.
On our tour of the lodge, we learned that most of the casino was decorated by the mother and daughter that own the lodge. It’s apparent at Bistecca, with such thoughtful attention to details – the fixtures are stunning, the leather booths are exquisite, and the ambience rivals that of a New York City restaurant. This was the perfect dinner. At one point, I had to stop and take a breath because the food was so unreal I couldn’t stop eating it. We enjoyed our meal, had a bottle from the premium wine selection and people-watched the entire night. I would definitely revisit Bistecca.
The subzero temps (it was below 8 degrees that weekend) kept us within the lodge, so it was inevitable that we would order room service. I have to say, this was one of my least favorite parts of the trip. The eggs were tasteless and the bacon tasted like it’d been sitting in oil for hours. I loved the coffee, though, and room service was not stingy with the amount of pancakes we received! If I had to do it again, I’d just go downstairs to Starbucks.
Hubby fell asleep very early on Saturday night so I made my way downstairs to try Lucky 8 Noodle Bar. I’m very particular about my noodles and I thoroughly enjoyed Lucky 8. The noodles were fresh and very flavorful. They also stay open late, which is great for drunk casino-goers.
WHERE TO PLAY
The casino has all of the pieces of a regular casino, there are slots and tables. I’m used to the expansive floors of Atlantic City hotels, but this one was just enough. I was able to walk around without getting lost, which was nice. The down side, though, was the floor wasn’t big enough to keep the smoke out of the non-smoking section. Luckily, there’s a non-smoking room a couple of floors above that is quiet because it seems most people don’t know it’s up there. We ended up winning almost $200, so the stars were aligned!
My favorite part of the trip, hands down, was my visit to the Salon & Spa. The facilities were pretty and very clean, and my massages were amazing. I had a facial and a back massage. After my services, I spent some time in the sauna and steam rooms – which were empty. During my visit to Spa, I saw a total of 5 women.
The pool area was very nice, I regretted not bringing my swimsuit instantly. The pool is heated, which would have been perfect for the cold temps. There are cabanas that are very cute and a bar that serves drinks almost 24 hours a day. At night, the bar becomes a party spot – I stopped by for a drink after the Gin Blossoms show on Saturday night. There weren’t many people there, but I assume everyone was with their love for Valentine’s day.
Gin Blossoms were the artists of the evening at Gypsie’s lounge, it’s an intimate space for music and comedy performances. We weren’t a big fan of Gin Blossoms, but it looked like plenty of people traveled just to see them. The weekend before, Marlon Wayans was there – we just missed him.
Overall, we had a nice time at Mount Airy Casino Resort. It was good to get away for the weekend somewhere so close to home…a vacation without being on vacation. We’ll definitely be back to visit!