What We Love
- The Jetsetter rate includes daily continental breakfast
- The sprawling Great Lawn has a private pool and plentiful Adirondack chairs
- A curated design that pairs antiques with chic beach style
- The Brown Room, a lively Old Havana–style bar and lounge, encourages socializing
- Free WiFi and valet parking
What To Know
- The beach is across the street from the hotel, and badges ($7 per day) are required to use it
- Cabana rentals cost $100 per day, but chairs and umbrellas are free
- The historic hotel has thin walls; the quietest rooms are located in the spa wing, away from the lobby and bars
- Popular for weddings and large gatherings
- Free WiFi
- Handicap Accessible
- Kids Club
- Parking On Site
- Room Service
Originally built in 1816, Congress Hall gets its name from its original owner, Congressman Thomas H. Hughes. Transformed in its early years from a boarding house to a summer White House for President Benjamin Harrison, the hotel has seen its share of history, which has been stylishly preserved through photographs and memorabilia that mix with Colleen Bashaw’s amusing and colorful design. Part rambling beach house, part chic retreat, the hotel has 108 unique rooms — complete with sloping floors — that are painted in beach colors accented by bright white trim. The beds are outfitted with plush Belgian linens, while the white tile bathrooms feature cotton robes and Aveda bath products. The Ebbitt Room is headed by executive chef Anthony Micari and serves farm-to-table fare such as roasted Amish chicken with marble potatoes, spring onions, wild mushrooms and natural jus. And with an underground nightclub in the hotel’s former boiler room, plus a lively Havana-inspired lobby bar, the property is geared to the social set. Yet guests can find solitude in the rocking chairs on the terrace, among the Adirondack chairs on the Great Lawn, or at the yellow-and-white-striped Sea Spa.
In the Area
Guests can stroll the Washington Street Mall, a pedestrian-friendly stretch of boutiques, cafés and ice cream shops. Step up to the bar inside Bath Time to mix a custom scent from the apothecary-style selection of oils. Wander Jackson Street to view meticulously maintained Victorians, such as the elegant Virginia Hotel, where you can sip a crafted cocktail on the porch before dinner at the romantic Ebbitt Room. Tiny Louisa’s Café is an elusive BYOB gem with a blackboard menu that usually includes local bluefish. Work up your pre-dinner appetite with a bike ride to Cape May’s historic lighthouse — it’s 199 steps to the top.
How to Get There
Congress Hall is "Old World "charm!! My room was comfy and warm!! I controlled the temperature!! Bed turned down at night and a paper at my door in the morning!!
The entire staff were friendly and happy s d helpful. Must not forget food...breakfast was delicious and the stunning bar for an evening cocktail by the crackling fireplace leave great memories!!!
Thank you all
I've always thought of Cape May as my second home (even though I live at the shore just north of Cape May). We come down to visit the wineries and we would stay at Congress Hall. This past experience, however, wasn't as great as it used to be.
I'll say upfront that the rooms are nice and clean. We usually get a room overlooking the town. The beds, unfortunately, are quite lumpy and it's hard to get a good night's sleep. The next morning, we went to the Blue Pig for breakfast. We sat down and it took quite a while for someone to come over. The manager finally came over and offered to get us coffee. He brought the coffee back to our table and then proceeded to dump the creamer on me. I had to go back to the room and change. After we were done eating, no one offered to comp us anything for spilling creamer all over me. I actually had to ask.
We then went about our day and came back and decided to go to the Brown Room for drinks. I am not a fan of the new decor. It's very much retro 70's. The old charm of the dark wood and leather is gone. The Boiler Room was a great after-dinner spot for us.
We went and had dinner at the Blue Pig and that wasn't remarkable either.
I'm sad to see this type of service and will look to stay elsewhere on our next trip.
Room was next to stairway on second floor facing the ocean. It was very loud. We heard music all night long and screaming from outside. People allowed kids to run up and down hallway.
I would think we would get a little extra, maybe a free cup of coffee for having a room in a ritzy place.
Not as impressed as I thought I’d be.