The Gables is beautifully decorated and appointed (marble baths, fine linens, plush bathrobes, fine toiletries) and is centrally located in Beach Haven, but it lacks one amenity crucial for relaxation at a beach inn- outdoor space to relax. The rooms are a bit small and quirky- ours had a sloped roof above the bed that you could hit your head on if not careful, and although a half bath was attached to the room, our private full bath was down a not private stairwell. But I like charming and quirky places and could have easily overlooked these aspects. What seriously compromised our ability to enjoy our stay there was that there was no common outdoor space for guests to relax. The Gables has a popular and fine, although quite expensive, restaurant, and the front porch and back patio are reserved for the restaurant. So after enough sun at the beach or on a rainy day, when we would have loved to sit outside on a covered porch to read a book or have a glass of wine, there was nowhere to do so. The only common space was a small, dark, indoor sitting room.
The quality of the breakfast was quite good, but the choices were very limited. They offered a choice of three entrees, and they only served guests from 9-10 am. They should at least have coffee available earlier. We're early risers and like coffee early in the morning, so even though we paid $300 for our room in a bed and breakfast, we had to go next door to the bagel place to buy a $2 coffee!
Since staying at the Gables, we stayed at the Victoria Guest House in Beach Haven, and the difference was stark. Although the Victoria may not be as opulently appointed- no toiletries, no marble baths, no bathrobes- what it lacked in this respect it more than made up for in other ways. There are lots of outdoor porches and balconies with couches, tables, rocking chairs, and a hammock for relaxation. They provide beach badges, beach chairs, bottled water, and bicycles free of charge. They offer a nice buffet breakfast and had coffee available at 7 am! Actually, they have a single serving coffee maker as well as a refrigerator available for guests 24 hrs. We enjoyed early morning coffee and early evening wine chilled from the refrigerator on their very relaxing porch each day.
I hope the owners of the Gables read this review and make a few changes, because if they did, it could be a very nice place to stay. They have restored and decorated the space so beautifully, but its business as a restaurant compromises its appeal as an inn. So as it is, I wouldn't recommend it to friends.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Glorious Food - Gracious Lodging. A small, refined Long Beach Island hotel and restaurant, The Gables is a meticulously restored Victorian inn combining the charm of a fine 1890s home with contemporary comforts and the finest food and service. Our award-winning restaurant is a destination in itself. ... more less
- Also Known As:
- The Gables Hotel Beach Haven
- The Gables Beach Haven, New Jersey - Long Beach Island