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“Congress Hall - Again a Pleasure” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Congress Hall

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Congress Hall
Ranked #3 of 37 Hotels in Cape May
Certificate of Excellence
Lancaster
Level Contributor
9 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Congress Hall - Again a Pleasure”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 April 2010

My wife and I made our 2nd trip to Congress Hall within 12 months. We visited last summer, but cannot make a summer trip this year, so we went the week after April. The hotel is simply beautiful and has so much "old world charm." Valet parking is nice, along with complimentary coffee your first night, and complimentary NY Times each morning. If you like a hotel that always has the feeling of "there's something going on," then this is the hotel for you. When we were there, there was a wedding and reception. It didn't hinder our stay, but the music could be heard until around 10-11 PM.
The bottom line with this hotel is this - (and a few others touched on this) - both times my wife and I stayed at CH, we were able to get an online deal they offer from time to time. Our room was suppose to be 200, but we got it for 115. In the summertime, our 300 room was only 175. If money is NO ISSUE for you, then it doesn't matter, but for those who don't have a money tree in our backyard, CH may be difficult to stay multiple nights for some people. In peak season, unless you have serious dough, don't even bother looking for oceanview rooms - they're going for about 600+. So, overall, WE LOVE THIS HOTEL, but all the stars have to be aligned in the universe for us to be able to stay our usual 2 night stay in Cape May. The location for this hotel CANNOT be beat...it's in the HEART of the historic district. Overall, highly recommended, but you better open up your wallet if you can't get an online deal/sale.

  • Stayed April 2010, travelled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank lancguy1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (328)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Maryland
2 reviews
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 15 April 2010

This is a wonderful old hotel rebuilt after fire in the early 1900's and more recently updated. Great location, great service. The rooms are nice but not outstanding. The beds and bathrooms were totally acceptable but not considered modern. The hotel has a really nice bar area with a fireplace and couches and lounges. Very nice to relax and have a drink before dinner. The Blue Pig Restaurant is right next to it and also a very nice atmosphere and good food. Prices are on par with any other good restaurant. The only complaint is that noise travels from room to room and from the outside. I don't think they knew much about insulation in 1905. The inside annex view rooms that are the cheapest have a view if the inland road. Not that bad and a lot cheaper than the ocean view. You can always go out to the large ocean side court yard or chairs they have set up at the end of the property nearest the ocean. So I wouldn't spend the extra money on the ocean view rooms. Also, I think the rooms at the end of the building would be quieter. We had a flag pole clanking in the middle of the night right outside our room. Over all, a very nice place to stay.

  • Stayed April 2010, travelled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank RetrieverPatton
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
24 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 April 2010

Even though it was one of the worst weather weekends in years on the Jersey Shore with horrible winds and rain we enjoyed every moment of our trip. It made our stay at the Congress Hall even more wonderful because we actually got to enjoy the hotel and our room. Our room had an ocean-view room that I am sure is great in summer because it also had a lovely balcony. The room was decorated beautifully - exactly as you would want your hotel by the beach to look - very serene and calm and lovely. It had high ceilings and beautiful old moldings and charm. The bed was amazing!!!! It was really hard to get out of because it was so comfortable with crisp white linens, fluffy pillows and a great mattress! The bathroom although small had a large shower and we enjoyed the charm. They have a coffee shop in the lobby and they even gave us free vouchers to get whatever we wanted for each night. We did want to go the bar and have a drink on Saturday night but had to pass because it was so crowded and there was no where to sit. I would love to go back to this hotel anytime of year and especially when you can go to the beach because it is so close.

  • Stayed March 2010, travelled on business
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank JBinIL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rhinebeck, NY
Level Contributor
36 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 15 March 2010

What a surprise! Nor'easter only enhanced the charm of CH. Fireplace in the Brown Room, wonderful bartender Jimmy, delicious appetizers, wondeful accomodations, just a treat.

  • Stayed March 2010, travelled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank nybailey7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
NY-Area
Level Contributor
8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 February 2010

If you're not familiar with Congress Hall here's some background. This is an historic hotel and was extensively renovated by the Cape Resorts Group a few years back. It is as oceanfront as you can get in Cape May as the main road that runs along the beach prevents any hotel from truly being oceanfront. Like many of the resorts and restaurants the Cape Resorts Group have bought and manage, it has upscale aspirations.

We've been to Cape May many, many times and decided to give the hotel a try for a quick getaway and found an unbeatable deal. After our stay I can say this is a good $200 per night hotel. But when we inquired about what the rate would be for our non-ocean view room in season our jaws nearly dropped to the 130 year-old marble floors -- an eye-popping $479 per night. Yikes. This is a TERRIBLE $479 per night hotel.

There is something to be said for charm and this hotel certainly has plenty. But when shelling out $479 a night, the charming bathroom door that does not stay closed, the charming antique toilet that doesn't stop running or the charming way no floor is truly flat (making you walk like a drunken-yet- charming-sailor) things quickly lose their "charmi-ness."

On the upside, the staff is great. The location is great. The beds were comfortable. The renovation included lots of slick lighting in the public areas which you wouldn't expect in a property this old. And the valet parking is a great perk in this parking-challenged town.

But I simply can't get past the price. I've been to outstanding $400+ per night hotels in some wonderful resort locations. Congress Hall is simply not in the same league. Once you add in all the Cape May taxes and such you're talking about ~$4000 for the week just for lodging. There are lots real resorts in more exotic locations than Cape May where I rather spend my vacation dollars. Maybe even look for a cruise and avoid the over priced Cape May food while you're at it.

I applaud the effort of the Cape Resort people for what they're trying to do with Congress Hall but just because people TELL you it's the best and charge you accordingly, it doesn't necessarily make it so.

  • Stayed January 2010, travelled with family
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
6 Thank KMagz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Northeast
Level Contributor
18 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 February 2010

This place has it all, bars, restaurants, view, spa, etc... We stay in 2008. The hotel is in the middle of downtown, you can walk to the beach, shops, restaurants, etc... we took advantage of the basement bar for a football game & beer and main lobby bar for martini's and bourbon. A charming hotel, our only bug was the sheets were a little scratchy.

  • Stayed November 2008, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank JamesLynnwood
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Northern NJ
1 review
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 February 2010

We love Congress Hall and come here often usually in the off season. Cape May is a wonderful place to visit even in the winter. The hotel is charming and comfortable and not pretentious. The rooms are very comfortable and they have preserved a lot of the original ambiance. We particularly like the Brown Room bar which is a great place to unwind with a cocktail in front of a roaring fire.

We love our coffee in the morning, so one niggle that we have is that they no longer offer free coffee in the lobby in the morning. If you want a cup of coffee in the morning, you must wait until their new coffee shop is open (not until 8am the days we were there). As guests we received a voucher for 2 cups of coffee our first day, but had to pay for coffee after that which turns out to be more expensive than Starbucks! This seems pretty cheap for an otherwise first class hotel

  • Stayed January 2010, travelled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank sprucehollow
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Congress Hall

Property: Congress Hall
Address: 200 Congress Place, Cape May, NJ 08204-5306
Phone Number:
Region: United States > New Jersey > Jersey Shore > Cape May County > Cape May
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Luxury Hotel in Cape May
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Cape May
#11 Romantic Hotel in Cape May
#12 Family Hotel in Cape May
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Congress Hall 4*
Number of rooms: 106
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

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