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Cove Haven Resort

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Cove Haven Resort in the Poconos
Cove Haven Resort

The Cove Haven campus in November. To the left is the restaurant. To the right is the gift shop. Guest rooms are located further down the driveway.

© Lauren Leonardi.
Romance is the main ingredient in the Cove Haven cocktail, but this Pennsylvania resort’s ideas about how to achieve it could use a shake. Despite the resort's stuck-in-the-past style, love-struck duos still make their way to this couples-only enclave regularly to celebrate anniversaries and buy into the "sexy" fantasy that Cove Haven peddles.

Cove Haven occupies a sprawling campus with a summer camp-like vibe. Its slogan, “Love Lives Here,” is the mantra. Instead of a single large building holding guest rooms, a dozen or so single-story buildings, some circular, are spaced about the hilly campus.

Cove Haven credits itself with inventing the “all inclusive” concept. The property provides a guest room, two meals a day, plus all the activities and entertainment a couple cares to consume at one price.

Rates vary with the choice of room. Activities range from water and snow sports to archery, volleyball, racquet games, classes, and more. Yet no one at Cove Haven will judge if you spend most of your time in room. Love, after all, lives there.

The property and concepts of Cove Haven, and its sister properties, were founded in 1958 by Morris Wilkins. It was Mr. Wilkins himself who invented the original heart-shaped Jacuzzi -- in his garage. It became ubiquitous at Pocono resorts when he neglected to patent it. Wilkins didn’t make the same mistake twice: Two decades later he introduced the (patented) seven-foot tall champagne-glass-shaped Jacuzzi to some 100 suites at Cove Haven and its sister properties, Paradise Stream and Pocono Palace.

Guests range from newly wedded twentysomethings to septuagenarians celebrating a wedding anniversary. Cove Haven has a strict no-children policy. And although no same-sex couples were spotted, the hotel claims to welcome couples of all lifestyles.

In-room water features and round beds are the crowning details of the Cove Haven experience. Alas, other elements desired for a comfortable stay — including the food and decor — are sub-par.

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