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“What a great concept! A boutique motel!”
Review of Beach Shack

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Beach Shack
Ranked #20 of 37 Hotels in Cape May
Ville D'Avray, France
Level 5 Contributor
50 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
“What a great concept! A boutique motel!”
Reviewed September 12, 2010

They have done a great job turning a motel into a mini boutique resort right in front of beach.
Great family place to spend a weekend and spend all day at the beach.
The restaurant Rusty Nail was awesome, with great summer ambiance and live music by a fire pit and mini beach.
Rates can be high but blame it on demand and location.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Louis B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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346 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (112)
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English first
London, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
357 reviews
65 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 142 helpful votes
Reviewed September 2, 2010

We stayed at tthe Beach Shack for 3 nights and were told over the phone we would have a blacony overlooking the beach they forgot to mention the car park and the road before the beach. The balcony was a shared walk way with 2 chairs and as you looked along at people sat outside their rooms it just looked like a council estate block in the UK. I paid extra for a suite which just meant we had a corner sofa rather than 2 double beds, I was told there was a kitchenette but there was no kettle just a coffee maker and a microwave and porrly equipped cupboard. Had to make tea in the coffee maker so it tasted of coffee. I would never pay $350 per night in England for a room that looked like a Travelodge room and would certainly expect a DVD player and i pod dock or CD. we watched films on a lap top and luckily took i pod speakers. This is a motel that's had a minor touch up and hiked the prices. The reception staff were sour and awkward when we arrived said they'd ring when we could check in but when we turned up at 3pm the room was ready - no phone call! when we were leaving i queried my bill and they insisted that's the rate i had agreed and wouldnt budge until we spotted on second trip back to them from the car that they had given u someone else's bill - the sweet false smiles come across as condescending. However the staff at the Rusty Nail were fantastic expecially the bar staff and the food was great. The beach staff were all moaning about how hard work it was to beds out and umbrellas made you feel like you would rather do it yourself rather than have them get hot and bothered on your account. You have to buy a beach pass so not included in hotel room but chairs and towels are but it rained for 24 hours in our 3 night stay. We couldn't even phone reception when a light wasnt working and told the cleaner but she didnt report it so we just left it. There's no lifts so be prepared to carry your luggage on way out as had help on the way in.
On the whole wish I'd paid $70 per night more for Congress Hall as the Beach Shack is a rip off.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
4 Thank halycondays
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these Cape May hotels

New York City, New York
Level 3 Contributor
14 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed August 24, 2010

This is one of the hotels that Congress Hall bought and upgraded. Congress Hall has done a great job with their properties and we expected just that. However, for $300 a nigth, we had a motel room with no central air, the smallest bathroom I've ever seen with a tub from the 1970's and kids galore. There was a small air conditioning unit in the window which did not work well and left the room musty. It smelled like a basement. The onsite restauarant is pretty good and I liked the outdoor fire pit and music. It's a bit of a long walk to town. Their beach service was a mess. They didn't check your name to see if you were a guest. Theye were running all over the place and it took 20 minutes to get set up. Do yourself a favor and use the money to stay at a nice hotel. This was a a big disappointment.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank MsNottie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Level 4 Contributor
48 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
Reviewed August 18, 2010

Just finished our stay at the Beach Shack. While it has a nice vibe the rooms are lacking quite a bit. The room we stayed in was musty and the air conditioner very noisy and inadequate, making it difficult to sleep. Another review pointed these same things out, so obviously unless someone is asleep at the switch these should have been corrected, but have not. They claim to have "refurbished" the place, but in all honestly they didn't do too swift of a job. Small bathroom,stained tub, rusted radiator, no soap dish. On the plus side, employees are very friendly and helpful, beach service is nice, Rusty Nail has decent food and is fun. BUT you will be sorely disappointed by the quality of the rooms. My wife, and interior designer summed it up by saying it would be so easy to fix some of the problems, but I guess they feel they don't have to. My opinion, eventually people will catch on and not want to stay here. By the way the hotel was not full, so maybe they are already catching on!!

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank rdlownes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Asbury, New Jersey
Level 4 Contributor
28 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed August 15, 2010

What we loved about the Beach Shack was it's location (close to the Beach, shopping and dinning), we also loved that they set up comfy chaise lounge chairs with towels at the beach. We think they should have had more help, however, so you didn't have to wait as long. We we didn't love was the room itself. It always felt damp. It could use a bathroom makeover, the heater was rusty and the tub outdated. The cabinets were shoty. We did like that the Rusty Nail provided lunch on the beach, it was pricey, but convenient. The entertainment was good, and again, convenient. We also were pleased that the outdoor music ceased by 9:30 and noise wasn't an issue when sleeping.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank mtorre1127
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Finger Lakes
Level 4 Contributor
38 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
Reviewed August 7, 2010

This review comes with a great deal of ambivalence and may actually sway you to stay here since the positives may out weigh the negatives depending upon your needs, likes, and price requirements for an east coast beach vacation. And, that is fine by us!

First off we must admit that we are big fans of the owners of this motel. Congress Hall is their crown jewel and their other sister properties (Starr Inn, etc.) are of top quality as well. They may have single handedly, over the past 15-years, been responsible for improving the quality of the Cape May room product and guest services.

For far too long absentee, inattentive, or just greedy (no AAA rates ever) hotel/motel owners have rested on selling circa '70s style rooms and poor service for top in season dollars! These poor owners do so because they can get away with it with such a beautiful town; well kept and safe beaches; historical landmarks; accessible wildlife; and excellent dining choices! While the Beach Shack owners have been putting their money and efforts into restoring Cape May into the jewel it once was.

So we salute the Beach Shack owners for the following - a retro beach theme; a beach location; clean and well put together, albeit small rooms; a well kept pool and property; free beach service (chairs, towels & umbrellas); and polite and attentive reservation specialists, pool (constantly cleaning up and changing towels), and outdoor wait staff, as well as the Rusty Nail restaurant and bar. The latter provides good food at reasonable prices and nightly music creating a island vibe!

On the down side - the rooms are small motel sized rooms with only one a/c unit for two rooms, despite the improvements and design; the pull out couch is not suitable for sleeping for adults or teens; the beach attendants were less than enthusiastic about their duties ("Do you really need four chairs and two umbrellas?"), while there are no phones or phone books in the rooms (Odd?). Most likely the latter was to cross sell their other restaurants and services; however it would be nice to explore other restaurants and call a doctor or pharmacist if necessary! We also found that we had no or limited cable/satellite tv service, which is not a huge factor unless you are traveling with small children then it becomes a deal breaker. (Unfortunately we had to hear from other guests that this was a temporary issue.)

The main question for you then dear reader is, "Does a motel room, even a well done motel room with a well thought out retro-concept with great service justify a $350/ night price tag?" Maybe the Beach Shack owners do!



, or as an economist would state, "On one hand the beach location; cleanliness by the staff; pool and beach service and newly designed beach theme

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank RockyFingerLakes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Altamont, New York
Level 3 Contributor
22 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed August 6, 2010

We thought this hotel was the perfect place for a family vacation. Myself, my wife our 12 year old and 5 year old loved this place. While certainly not a luxury hotel it had the perfect mix of everything, clean rooms, great staff. pool, fantastic bar and restaurant and luxury accomodations on the beach. We were met with by a professional staff and when we traveled to the beach we were asked how many chaise lounges and umbrellas we needed and they were all set up for us w towels. Back at the hotel the two queen size beds and pull out couch gave us all the sleeping room we needed. The rusty nail lounge next too our rooms had an outside fire pit and sandy beach that the kids loved to hang out in while we enjoyed a fantastic margarita mixed perfectly to end the day. The entertainment at the rusty nail was super and all was quiet and closed up by 930-10pm. we cant wait to go back.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank kpbgmc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Beach Shack

Property: Beach Shack
Address: 205 Beach Ave, Cape May, NJ 08204
Location: United States > New Jersey > Jersey Shore > Cape May County > Cape May
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#15 On the Beach Hotel in Cape May
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Beach Shack 3*
Number of rooms: 68
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Beach Shack is a fresh, new, fun alternative for beachfront vacations. You will feel comfortable wearing your flip flops all day long. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Beach Shack Hotel Cape May

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