Kalahari Resorts and Conventions opens park in the Poconos

Kalahari Resorts and Conventions opens park in the Poconos.
Kalahari Resorts and Conventions opens park in the Poconos. | Courtesy of Kalahari Resorts & Conventions
Home to Pennsylvania’s largest indoor water park, Kalahari Resorts and Conventions officially opened its property in the Poconos on Wednesday, offering visitors an authentic experience based on the founding family’s tour of the African continent.

The grand opening, attended by 600 people including state and local township dignitaries, construction development managers and various media outlets, was the culmination of the Nelson family’s dream.

“Today is a big one for not only our company, but my family, as well,” owner Todd Nelson said. “We have always dreamed of expanding to the East Coast, and there’s no better way to do it than with our grandest resort to date in this historically prevalent tourist area.”

Kalahari Resorts and Conventions’ facility provides an authentically African-themed experience. In October 2014, the Nelson family completed a 23-day tour of Africa, where they sourced art and other items prominently featured in their resorts.

Along with Rwandan coffee and handcrafted African artisans’ work, the resort currently boasts over 450 guest rooms, a family entertainment center, restaurants, a spa and salon. Completing the community are a 100,000-square-foot convention center plus 6,000 square feet of retail space.

“We couldn’t be more thrilled to bring the spirit of Africa to the Poconos,” Nelson said. “We look forward to … boosting tourism in the area long term.”

With groundbreaking alone, the project brought over 1,000 jobs to the local economy. Now in its second phase, the business will offer nearly 1,000 guest rooms when completed in spring 2017.

The resort was recently named The World’s Coolest Indoor Waterparks by Condé Nast Traveler. Its other locations include Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin and Sandusky, Ohio.