Cape May is a classic coastal community famous for its high concentration of beautifully preserved Late Victorian buildings, many of which are now functioning as high-end (and extremely sought-after) bed-and-breakfasts — with upmarket room rates to match. Here are six great-value alternatives.
Set on a tree-lined street that's a short walk to the beach and Washington Street Mall, the Queen Victoria is a mid-range, 30-room bed-and-breakfast, spread over four picturesque homes. A tasty breakfast buffet and afternoon tea and snack service are served daily. The Queen Victoria has bicycles that guests can borrow and outdoor showers for cleaning off after a day at the beach. All rooms have charming details and antique decor, as well as free Wi-Fi, TVs with DVD players, and mini-fridges.
On the quiet end of Cape May, this budget hotel has a convenient beachfront location near downtown and a variety of comfortable room types. Property highlights include a heated pool, whirlpool, and picnic area. No room allows more than three guests, so adults and couples are the norm here, though children are welcome. The Sea Crest doesn’t offer a lot of bells and whistles, but rooms are clean, the beds comfy, and the staff friendly.
Built in 1984, this four-story motel offers 37 rooms, nearly all of which face the ocean (whether you can actually see the ocean from your guestroom is another matter -- a miniature golf course and trees obscure much of the view from the lower floors). The Camelot is basic and doesn’t offer a lot of frills (though there is a pool and easy access to discounted bike rentals, across the street), and the room decor is generic, but this motel is a solid budget choice in a good location. The friendly, laid-back staff and clean rooms are a plus too.
A fairly typical budget beach motel, the Victorian features a nice outdoor pool with a nine-foot deep-end, barbecue grills, sundeck area, and little else. The 38-room property has a great downtown location next to Washington Street Mall -- a popular pedestrian strip with shops and restaurants -- and is only a block from the beach. The rooms are generic, but well maintained. During peak season, the Victorian Motel is a great value for Cape May.
A friendly, charming budget hotel, the 44-room Capri Motor Lodge is located directly across the street from the beach and a short distance from popular dining and shopping areas. The value property has a family-friendly, laid-back atmosphere with various outdoor activities such as a pool with lounge chairs, shuffleboard, ping pong, several grills, and picnic tables. The rooms are clean and spacious, and nicer than some of the other similar hotels in the area, with beachy decor that doesn't go overboard. Each room has two full size beds, a flat-screen TV, air-conditioning, and a kitchenette with a mini-fridge, stove top, and sink; the suites have a full kitchens with a dishwasher, an oven, a full refrigerator, and a microwave, as well as a separate living room and dining table.
Right across the street from a wide strip of beach (and a six-minute walk to pedestrian-friendly Washington Street Mall), Avondale by the Sea is a clean, comfortable beachfront property popular with families and couples. Basic rooms with tile floors and white walls are mostly designed as a clean place to sleep in between trips to the beach, though they do have flat-screen TVs with cable channels, free Wi-Fi, and mini-fridges in all rooms; an upgrade is required for a balcony overlooking the Atlantic Ocean.