The newly refurbished king and queen rooms at this charming Cape May destination are spacious and airy. For a more intimate experience, choose one of the adults-only cabins. King cabins have jacuzzi tubs and full kitchens. The pool boasts a cascading waterfall.
In-season rates starting at $145. 756 U.S. 9, Cape May, (609) 884-8551, capecottageinn.com.
Things have been buzzing at this Wildwood Crest hotel, beginning with a $12 million rebuild in 2021 and continuing into this year. From the luxe lobby to the 102 suites and studios, everything has been updated for a fresh new experience. A rehabbed sixth floor offers 20 penthouse suites, and the exterior is now a vibrant blue. The on-site Coastal Blue Oceanside Bar & Grill also got a refresh.
In-season rates starting at $284. 9701 Atlantic Ave., Wildwood Crest, (609) 551-0102, icona.com.
Affectionately known as “the Drift,” the family-owned Windrift was one of the most popular oceanfront hotels in Avalon for almost 55 years. This past April, the property was acquired by ICONA, which took over the nearby Golden Inn six years ago. Renovated rooms have a beachy vibe, as do the fully equipped four-bedroom condominiums. The heated zero-entry pool has a hot tub, underwater music and LED lighting. Six indoor and outdoor dining and drinking spots include an oceanfront restaurant, a lounge with live entertainment on weekends, and a tiki bar. The ambiance and cuisine range from fine dining to poolside casual.
Free to guests: beach tags and bikes. In-season rates starting at $407. 105 80th St., Avalon, (609) 368-5175, icona.com.
The aesthetic transformation has been stunning at this Sea Isle City fixture, right down to the comfy new mattresses and upgraded linens and towels. An on-site bakery/cafe offers freshly prepared snacks and sweets. Or grab a drink at the outdoor cocktail bar.
In-season rates starting at $324. 4000 Landis Ave., Sea Isle City, (609) 263-1912, ludlamhotel.com.
ICONA’s new lifestyle resort brand said its first alohas to visitors in the spring, bringing with it a breezy Hawaiian-style hospitality. Located on the site of Wildwood Crest’s former Regal Plaza Motel, this beachfront beauty is fronted by a waterfall pool and offers rooms and suites with large balconies. Adults can lounge around the pool while families enjoy the kid-friendly water zone play area. Amenities include a breakfast spot and grab-and-go meals and snacks.
Free to guests: bikes and a boardwalk shuttle. In-season rates starting at $179. 9501 Atlantic Ave., Wildwood Crest, (609) 522-5670, MahaloDiamondBeach.com.
Since purchasing this classic Cape May destination in January, Madison Resorts has embarked on a $2 million upgrade of its lobby and guestrooms, keeping the tweaks modest to retain the identity of the beloved property. Queen and king rooms offer full or partial ocean views. The views are also spectacular from the rooftop patio bar. The resort has its own private beach club with cabanas for rent. Guests enjoy a heated oceanfront pool and beach service from the on-site Harry’s Ocean Bar & Grille. Harry’s also has the only beachfront rooftop bar in town.
Free to guests: chaise lounges, umbrellas and beach tags. In-season rates starting at $298. 1025 Beach Ave., Cape May, (609) 884-7011, montrealbeachresort.com.
You can’t miss Ocean City’s iconic “pink hotel.” For the 2022 season, it retained its signature cheerful exterior as it underwent a major interior reinvigoration. Renovated guestrooms combine contemporary sophistication with time-honored elegance.
In-season rates starting at $239. 1510 Boardwalk, Ocean City, (800) 334-4546, portocallhotel.com.
In totally revamping one of Ocean City’s last remaining Victorians, Jersey Shore native Sne Avichal wanted to create a nostalgic connection to the town’s Golden Days of the 1920s. The architect-turned-innkeeper describes his approach as “performance architecture”—one that involves everything from the lighting and brass fittings to the pure white linens and music playing in the lobby.
In-season rates starting at $299. 720 Ocean Ave., Ocean City, (609) 399-1558, scarboroughinn.com.
Fancy furnishings are accented with floral fabrics and linens to create an authentic Victorian Cape May experience at this circa-1850 mansion situated a half block from the beach. Many rooms have porches with ocean views.
Free to guests: breakfast, afternoon tea with freshly baked sweets, a wine-and-cheese buffet, bikes, umbrellas, and towels. In-season rates starting at $239. 5 Trenton Ave., Cape May, (609) 884-3369, angelofthesea.com.
Located a block from the beach in Cape May, the Bedford offers eight rooms and two suites, along with hand-painted murals, opulent chandeliers and antique furnishings.
Free to guests: breakfast. In-season rates starting at $250. 805 Stockton Ave., Cape May, (609) 884-4158, bedfordinn.com.
This Sea Isle City boutique hotel reflects its Victorian Era origins with 19 individually owned condos of various sizes that rent as hotel rooms. Each has its own distinctive character and furnishings.
In-season rates starting at $215. 4600 Landis Ave., Sea Isle City, (609) 263-8868, thecolonnadeinn.com.
At this 19th-century Cape May mansion, the elegant color palette reflects the beauty of the flowers outside. The Summer Cottage has a separate sitting area, a jacuzzi tub, a private patio with seating, and its own garden area.
Free to guests: breakfast, afternoon tea, bikes, towels and chairs. In-season rates starting at $384. 613 Columbia Ave., Cape May, (609) 884-4948, theharrisoninn.com.
Stay in the 1893 Victorian Cape May inn or the more private cottage just a few feet away.
Free to guests: breakfast, afternoon tea, bikes, beach chairs and towels. In-season rates starting at $299. 1002 Washington St., Cape May, (609) 884-8406, innattheparknj.com.
This circa-1871 Cape May gem is quite a find just a block from the beach, with its lofty ceilings, full-length windows and sweeping veranda. The Warner and Davis suites both have jacuzzi tubs, gas fireplaces and separate lounge areas.
Free to guests: breakfast, afternoon refreshments and snacks, bikes, beach chairs, and towels. In-season rates starting at $319. 623-625 Columbia Ave., Cape May, (609) 884-3358, themasoncottage.com.
Each of the two apartments and seven suites at this lovely late-19th-century dwelling is furnished in a different theme. The Treehouse Room has a jacuzzi tub and fireplace—or upgrade to the Junior Penthouse Suite, with its two-person whirlpool tub. For a special treat, splurge on the Honeymoon Suite, with its two Brookstone massage chairs, corner fireplace, large couple’s jacuzzi tub, awning-covered balcony, and windows above the queen bed for stargazing.
In-season rates starting at $140. 416 Central Ave., Ocean City, (609) 233-5447, ocmansion.com.
A large oceanfront porch is one of the most endearing details of this surprisingly intimate Cape May mansion, which was built in 1907. Some of the handsomely appointed guestrooms have gas or electric fireplaces. Don’t miss a meal at the acclaimed on-site restaurant.
Free to guests: breakfast, afternoon wine and cheese, bikes, beach chairs, and towels. In-season rates starting at $289. 1301 Beach Ave., Cape May, (609) 884-9090, petershieldsinn.com.
Located in the heart of Cape May one block from the beach, this unique inn comprises three painstakingly restored 1880s homes and an 1876 gambling parlor. Rooms reflect the different aesthetics that characterized the Victorian era. Spacious premium rooms and a new suite have whirlpool tubs. Some have gas fireplaces.
Free to guests: breakfast and afternoon tea. In-season rates starting at $230. 102 Ocean St., Cape May, (609) 884-8702, queenvictoria.com.
Built in 1901 as a private vacation home, this seven-room charmer located a block from the beach in Avalon has been welcoming guests since 1957. Some rooms have two-person spa tubs. Others have separate living areas and full kitchens.
In-season rates starting at $210. 3018 First Ave., Avalon, (609) 967-5647, sealark.com.
Dating to 1860, this posh Cape May manse sits among well-tended gardens. Rooms are bright and spacious, and some have private balconies.
Free to guests: breakfast, beach chairs and towels. In-season rates starting at $289. 720 Washington St., Cape May, (609) 884-7171, southernmansion.com.
Built in the 1840s and expanded 50 years later, the Wilbraham retains the ornate plaster moldings and gilded mirrors of its original heyday. Suites have 11-foot ceilings with chandeliers, jacuzzi tubs and fireplaces. The mansion also has a heated indoor pool.
Free to guests: breakfast and afternoon tea. In-season rates starting at $185. 133 Myrtle Ave., Cape May, (609) 884-2046, wilbrahammansion.com.