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“Horrible dinner”
Review of The Chalfonte

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The Chalfonte
Ranked #26 of 37 Hotels in Cape May
ny
Level Contributor
43 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Horrible dinner”
Reviewed June 28, 2013

we visited the hotel for dinner because their fried chicken was supposed to be wonderful. We had to order the complete meal for $36 which included an appetizer and salad....which I did not want. The chicken leg and thigh was very very dry and very small. It was horrible.. I asked for a potato and had to have the non descript rice.... which I did not eat. I was so disappointed and I did report it to the people who were in charge. The general manager was not there. I would never return there to eat again... I ended up not being able to at the meal --but did have a a cup of soup just so I would have some sort of dinner. The clam chowder was ok....

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank arl629
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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182 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (38)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • Any
English first
latrobe,pa
Level Contributor
12 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed June 21, 2013

We typically stay in a B&B but when our usual place was booked we decided on the Chalfonte's Southern Quarters, which is a separate building, located next door to the main hotel. We picked room 4 specifically for the large, private 2nd floor porch, private bath and AC. The room was a nice size with a full and twin size bed. The Southern quarters is located on the ocean side of the property and the ocean breeze was so nice that we only needed the AC at night. We did not eat in the restaurant, however the King Edward bar is very nice and allowed us to take drinks back to our room to enjoy on the porch. The location is great and we had no problem finding parking. Would definitely stay here again!

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank tammy75
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wildwood, New Jersey
Level Contributor
19 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed June 18, 2013

Amazing great Southern-style food. Located within the porch of this Historic Hotel. Tried their Sunday evening buffet and couldn't get enough. The fried chicken was the best but everything in the buffet was outstanding, from the salads to dessert. Will definitely return with friends!!!

Room Tip: After dinner we toured the Lobby, Lounge & Grounds. Beautiful, welcoming & quaint. I didn...
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Tim B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mount Airy, NC
Level Contributor
37 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed February 27, 2013

I turned fifty last May and my husband surprised me by arranging a week in Cape May at the Chalfonte. I can’t think of a better way to have spent that milestone birthday and hope to repeat it again this year.

The Chalfonte Hotel has been part of my life for 30 years. It was part of my early adulthood and our courtship. It's where we spent our first married winter as caretakers of the hotel. I’ve spent countless birthday weekends there, innumerable hours in the kitchen or rocking on a porch with a good book or better companionship. I am predisposed to love the Chalfonte.

Do not, however, mistake my love of this Grand Dame for baseless sentimentality. The Chalfonte is an experience that, for many...for those of us lucky enough to find her in this way, becomes a part of the fabric of life. She allows for moments that stand out forever in our memories.

I’ve traveled for fun and business from New Orleans to Baltimore to Providence and stayed at a range of hotels from dives to $300 a night rooms, bed and breakfasts, kitchy motels and hostels. Each has their place in society and meets different travel needs. I do not mean to denigrate any. Well, ok, there was that Best Western in High Point, NC a few years ago, but that was an isolated incident and was nearly entirely an issue with the General Manager.

By and large, one hotel is much like the next. Most stays, interchangeable. Staff rise to set this hotel apart from that but little else is truly different.

The Chalfonte, however, is unique.

As others who’ve written on this site have advised, do not come to the Chalfonte expecting a Holiday Inn, or a Radisson, or a Courtyard. If the homogonous, modern, mostly-isolated-in-your-room experience is what you want, there are many such choices in Cape May.

Do not come to the Chalfonte expecting a small intimate B&B with six rooms and only a few other guests, either.

The folks at the front desk do a great job of telling folks about the lack of AC, or an elevator or private baths and other points deemed by many to be negatives.

The Chalfonte is a glorious sprawling hotel with wooden floors, plaster walls, shared baths on the hallways in many cases and where generations of families have returned year after year. Come open to finding something different. To stepping out of your comfort zone and back to a time when guests met new folks on vacation, had new experiences, read a book and, once the car was parked, never moved it till it was time to head home.

As with any place, there will be the occasional less-than-perfect moment of loud music, distracted employee or impolite guests. For me, and for many others, however, those few, rare moments have been greatly overshadowed by innumerable, irreplaceable memories … sitting at dinner with strangers to leave as fast friends, meeting folks on the porches … an admiral and his wife who were stationed at Pearl Harbor when the bombs started falling, a couple who run a hostel near the a state woman’s prison, a children’s author, a lawyer from Egypt, a museum curator from Berlin …

Falling asleep to the sound of the waves crashing two short blocks away … waking to the sound of gulls and bird song and the scent of the sea breezes in a hotel with windows that actually open. Watching a storm rage over the distant horizon from the cupola.

And sometimes, in a quiet moment in the middle of the day or of an evening as the fog rolls in off the ocean enveloping her ginger-breading in a fine mist shimmering with the flickering gaslight and the steady clopping of horse-drawn carriages echoing around, sometimes one can imagine the year is something quite different than what the calendar reads.

And that, my friends, is not a moment to be found in any modern hotel. No matter the price.

Room Tip: Take a room on the Ocean side if possible.
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
5 Thank Kathy R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
South Jersey
Level Contributor
263 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 134 helpful votes
Reviewed September 21, 2012

My wife and I were treated to a wonderful stay at the Chalfonte..Neither she nor I had ever stayed in an old 19th century hotel but we were impressed. Our accommodations were extremely well appointed, spacious and very comfortable.. Granted given the buildings age there are of course some anomalies in terms of noise etc. but it was all part of a grand experience..I can only imagine how it must have been to guests over 100 years ago..
If you elect to stay be advised that some things we expect in modern hotels ie. elevators may not be the case.. The coolest thing about staying here was a feeling that one could step back into and gain an appreciation of yesteryear.. The staff was very helpful and we have nothing but positive comments to make on the Chalfonte..

Room Tip: Porch access rooms are a treat..
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank ricardomnt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Absecon, NJ
Level Contributor
11 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed September 10, 2012

My husband book a two night stay (minmum) for our 15th Wedding Anniversay for $200 a night!!
We arrived to a wedding that consumed the whole hotel (couldn't sit on the porch & restaurant/bar was closed). Because of the wedding we couldn't find parking. The wedding was suppose to be done at 10 and some of the wedding party (not staying at the hotel) stayed on the porch until midnight - drunk & using foul lanuage.
The woman at the front desk was rude and very poor customer service.

Not exactly a romantic weekend listening to drunks from the wedding.

The room was nothing more than a supposed queen size bed, a night stand and a single window with broken glass and dirty old curtains that were too heavy for the rod and were drooping down. No mini-fridge. When my husband booked he was told it had a mini kitchen. The front desk had no explanation for the mix up. The only positive was the bathroom was newer but they glued one shower door shut and to turn on the bath you had to climb in the end of the tub!!! Hot water took forever. Our bedroom at home was 3x the size and cleaner!
The "A/C" never came on the first night & it was awful humid (no breeze from window).
The 2nd night it was so cold, I slept with my fleece jacket on!!
There was a wedding the 2nd night too - but they were done by 10. Again no bar or sitting on the porch.

When we checked out and told them about the air conditioning, all they said was "sorry".

For $200 a night, a free breakfast should have been included and a mini-fridge and cleaner! Never again!
The Chalfonte is nothing more than a overpriced boarding house! Don't waste your $$$

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank amorrison22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these Cape May hotels

Brooklyn, New York
Level Contributor
49 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed August 29, 2012

We spent a night in August. The room was a queen with a bath (shower actually) on the top floor. The place is over 100 years old with creaky floors and guests. Our room had central A/C it was small by contempoary standards. We opted for the meal plan $30 a head which was dinner and breakfast. Dinner was great, go with the crab cake and the sea food bisque, drinks and desert are extra. Breakfast was a buffet with the usually scrambled eggs and freshfruit, bacon etc. We enjoyed chillin' on the porch in the rockers watching the horse drawn carriage and bicyclists pass by. My main complaint is that the bill is unreadable, I asked the front desk what mt evening in the hotel cost me and she circled a number on the bill that is $50 less then my math. I hope my Am Ex bill agrees with her.

Room Tip: European bath has a toilet and shower in suite, shared baths are in the hall.
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Peter B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Chalfonte

Property: The Chalfonte
Address: 301 Howard St, Cape May, NJ 08204-2430
Location: United States > New Jersey > Jersey Shore > Cape May County > Cape May
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Suites
Hotel Style:
#16 Family Hotel in Cape May
#19 On the Beach Hotel in Cape May
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2 star — The Chalfonte 2*
Number of rooms: 70
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Established in 1876, The Historic Chalfonte Hotel is recognized as the oldest continuously operating hotel in Cape May, America's Original Seaside Resort. Situated just two blocks from the beach, The Chalfonte offers a unique seashore experience defined by warm, Southern-style hospitality and simplistic traditions. We cater to every budget with spacious suites, guest rooms with premium and European style baths, and traditional rooms with shared baths down the hall. Guest rooms feature crisp linens and cool seaside colors, and are free of televisions, telephones, and clock radios. Our nationally acclaimed Magnolia Room restaurant serves Southern-style fare with lovingly prepared family recipes and our King Edward Bar is famous for its classic cocktails and casual ambiance. Our guests continuously return from around the world to enjoy this very special destination. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
The Chalfonte Hotel Cape May
Chalfonte Cape May
Chalfonte Hotel Cape May

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