We arrived on a cold, rainy day in mid-March, resigned to spending more time indoors than out. The hotel was finishing renovations in its spa area and the balcony room we'd chosen would have been noisy, so the manager graciously moved us to a wonderful room on the top floor with two window seats overlooking the ocean. Watching the waves from the window seat with a novel in hand was almost as good as lounging on the beach on a warm summer day (well, maybe not quite, but at least we could easily imagine some warmth!).
Our room (432) was quite generous in size. The comfy king size bed had freshly-ironed high-thread-count linens. Towels were numerous, new and thick. The big marble and tile bathroom had a large shower and a separate soaking tub, also with views of the ocean. Room decor is perfect for the beach (wicker chairs, pastel colors, white furniture). Everything was spotlessly clean.
The entry and reception area looked a bit tired and staff was sparse for the winter, but the hospitality and service level soon made us forget our wary first impression The lounge was both sophisticated and cozy; we enjoyed drinks and snacks by the fire there each evening. Because it was still winter, many of the area restaurants were closed, so we had most of our meals at the on-site Blue Pig Tavern. Virtually every morsel of food was extraordinary. The signature eggs benedict was especially noteworthy. Appetizers, entrees, breads, drinks and desserts were all were all top-notch as was the presentation and service. The Blue Pig boasts lovely fresh linens, china and silver but in a very comfortable, informal setting with lots of windows and mirrors.
The value was excellent - we had a special package that included free cocktails and breakfast. My husband had some work to do and was disappointed by the absence of a business center, but this is a vacation place and the front desk staff generously helped him with faxes and there is free wi-fi throughout the building. There was a DVD player in the room and DVDs were available but at a cost of $5 per night. There is no in-room coffee maker or refrigerator, but there was free freshly-brewed coffee and tea with big paper cups downstairs each morning. Room service was available, although we didn't use it. The hotel shops looked quite nice, but they were shuttered.
This was our first trip to Cape May. Off-season it's quiet and relaxing and has much to recommend it - if we return, it will be in warmer weather, but to this hotel. It's within easy walking to just about everywhere you might want to go except the harbor (and that would require only a 5-minute drive). As noted, the value and service were matchless.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Congress Hall in Cape May is America's First and Oldest Seaside Resort Hotel. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Congress Hall Cape May, New Jersey