DATE OF VISIT
October 05, 2014
SAYLORSBURG, PENNSYLVANIA - Now if you are looking for a detailed history lesson of The Lake House Hotel then please direct yourself here. Even if you aren't we suggest you still check it out. The history of this Saylorsburg icon is detrimental to the story behind Hotel of Horror. If it was written here, we might never get to our review. That's how much history there is! Moving on... Over the last few years our good friend Oni Harstein of OneZumi has done nothing but rave about her numerous experiences at The Hotel of Horror. She even goes a few times a year because it's that good! Therefore, after last years review posted to her blog, we had to experience it on our own and see what all this commotion is about. So in the car we got! After the two and a half hour drive we were standing in the parking lot ready to take our venture into the labyrinth waiting behind the walls of the hotel.
As we stood there listening to the eerie music that infiltrated our ear drums and the creepy building that cascaded into our minds the level of excitement rose in us. From the outside the building sure does speak for itself. It looks frail, aged and just creepy. What we loved the most about the sinister facade was the attention to detail... Not only was there music but there was also lighting omitting from the outside and the inside from numerous room windows. This set the mood for us. We really felt like we were about to walk into a hotel where spirits, ghouls and monsters of all kinds roam freely. Let's just say we wasted no time grabbing our tickets and heading to our first attraction!
Considering the Hotel of Horror is the main attraction, we opted for Altered Nightmares: Voodoo first. From the very moment you enter the line, you can sense that what you are about to experience is no joke. It's the perfect set up. As you wait to enter the attraction from the basement you can hear the footsteps, screams, bangs and music from the maze above. It was definitely a great way to toy with the mind... Thankfully there was a short line so we waited maybe ten minutes before the door was opened and we were ushered inside on our own.
This maze follows its grim title from the very first flight of stairs to the last set of double doors you open. It was creepy, dark and creative. From the large and small decorative items strategically placed in each room to the music that echoed through the entire attraction, the theme followed through until the very end! It was refreshing to experience an attraction with such originality behind it. Usually when a maze is housed inside an aged building it displays noticeable signs of restructuring to handle the constant use during the Fall months. However, the Hotel of Horror seems untouched on the inside... I am sure there are tweaks that we cannot see but we really felt like we were winding and weaving through the halls and rooms of an abandoned hotel. We wondered how it would be executed given the age and layout of the hotel and to our surprise it was done with such perfection!
Altered Nightmares was a very frightening attraction! There was a little bit of everything; pitch darkness, claustrophobia, disorientation and of course fear! There are a few dead spots here and there but overall it was a great maze. Considering the season has just begun it would be unfair for us to divulge secrets hidden behind the walls of The Lake House... We promise you, this attraction will definitely make any haunt enthusiast scream! Tip: When entering this attraction make sure to keep your group small. With the many different rooms and halls I could see larger groups missing out on some of the action.
After leaving Altered Nightmares we made a B-line for the queue to the Hotel of Horror attraction. All night we had been hearing from various staff members that this maze would be more intense then the previous. Of course to us it was all speculation because we hadn't experienced it yet. However once in the basement we realized it must be true because of the longer wait. We waited about twenty minutes before we were escorted onto the elevator. Before we get haunt nerd on everyone let me just start it off by saying this maze was intense, scary, creepy, terrifying... Ok you get the point! It was perfect! Definitely the way I wanted to end my night at The Hotel of Horror!
Once inside, we were at the mercy of very dedicated and we mean very dedicated actors! In fact the first actor we encountered was so on point and so good at what he does that it made the attraction for us! Sometimes it's just the smaller things in life... Again we can't divulge such juicy information during the season, it would render a visit there pointless! So just get yourself there to see what we're talking about.
Aside from the dedicated actors, this attraction was much longer and darker. There were numerous rooms that were set up perfectly in delivering creepiness or startling scares. Don't ask we aren't telling! But some of the rooms throughout this maze were just creepy, not terrifying just down right creepy. Which to us is sometimes more unsettling. There was some dead space but it didn't matter... When we reached the very top of the attraction, it erased any negative critiques we had. The top scene was just a masterpiece! Definitely our favorite of the night! Definitely save this attraction for last.
Overall Hotel of Horror was a great attraction. It's unique, original, scary, creepy, dark and honestly a work of haunt art. Everything from the lighting, music, set display and actors was on point. There was a perfect balance of animatronics versus actors. The actually Lake House is the best backdrop for this sinister attraction. We were really surprised how much of the hotel was used! I would highly recommend this attraction to anyone who is looking for a good scare this Fall! It is definitely scary and creepy... Kudos to Marlo and her husband!
On a side note, The Hotel of Horror not only features two haunted house style attractions but also a museum showcasing static displays from hospitals, morgues and prisons. It was definitely interesting to see and the guide really knew her stuff on each and every item! If you have some free time make sure to check it out!