One of our guests recently told me that the Farmer’s Almanac is calling for a Hot Summer. I’m all for that! They were apparently predicting a cold, miserable Winter, which they obviously nailed right on the head. Let’s hope they are right about the Summer.
Wait, it just occurred to me that perhaps you don’t view hot Summers the same way I do. I picture them as radiantly beautiful mornings eating breakfast in our garden dining area or on the front porch. I see leisurely strolls down the promenade after breakfast, and perhaps a seaside lunch at McGlade’s on the Pier. Hot Summers mean napping under an umbrella on the beach, feeling the cool ocean breeze blowing across my face. Dining al fresco at a wonderful Cape May restaurant also comes to mind. The best part is waking up the next morning in Cape May and doing it all over again.
If you prefer my vision of a hot Summer to your own, then maybe all you need is a change of venue for a few nights, perhaps a week. Treat yourself to a visit to The Queen Victoria and make the most of your hot summer. I know you’ll be glad you did.
Cape May Music Festival 25th Annual, May 25 through June 12
That’s right, the Mid Atlantic Center for the Arts (MAC) has been delivering high-quality music to Cape May for 25 years now.
If you haven’t ever visited Cape May during the Music Festival, then you should seriously consider it (if you love great music, that is). Unlike many music festivals which cram all the music into a weekend, the MAC music festival is stretched out over nearly 3 weeks, with several concerts each week. It fits well with the relaxed atmosphere in Cape May, don’t you think?
As always, this year there will be lots of great performances in venues all over town. New for this year is the partnership with the Exit Zero Jazz Festival, which includes 2 jazz concerts on the weekend of May 31-June 1.
As always, we will provide FREE tickets to all concerts (except the 2 Exit 0 Jazz concerts) to anybody staying at The Queen Victoria. Please call us for more information, or ask about them when making your reservation.
For years the Cape May Jazz Festival was a staple of the Fall & Spring Cape May scene. That festival is no longer, but I’m pleased to say that the Exit 0 Jazz Festival, which was born the week after Hurricane Sandy struck in 2012, is bigger and better than the Cape May Jazz Festival ever was.
Better yet, after a very successful 2013 Fall event, they are rolling out their first (late) Spring event. It is shaping up to be the biggest, best Jazz festival to ever play in Cape May.
There are some really great headliners scheduled for the big events, which includes a new Sunday show in both the afternoon & evening. Also new is an outdoor show at the Emlen Physick Estate, featuring a wine/beer tent, food vendors and more. Truly a festival atmosphere. It will be a really cool event.
Passes are available for both 2 days and 3 days, and I’ve got to say they are priced right. Since we’re one of the Festival’s Hospitality partners, you’ll be able to purchase them directly from us if you wish (same price).
Do you want another reason to attend? Cape May Restaurant week starts that Sunday. If you love Jazz and are looking for a great weekend, I suggest you plan a 3 night visit to The Queen Victoria, enjoy some great music and good times, and cap your weekend off with an amazing meal at Restaurant Week prices on Sunday.
Would it be too corny to say that I’m really “Jazzed” about this?
7th Annual Cape May Restaurant Week June 1-8 … “8 nights, 3 courses”
One of the great things about Cape May is the abundance of wonderful restaurants. The only way to improve on the restaurant scene in Cape May is to make it more affordable, which I’m pleased to say is going to happen in June. We all love a discount, right?
Every year many of Cape May’s finest restaurants come together to participate in this dining extravaganza. Each one will be offering a 3 course fixed price dinner for either $25 or $35, or both. Many restaurants also offer a two course lunch special for $15 during the week as well.
If you appreciate fine dining and are looking for a tasty time to visit Cape May, this may be perfect for you!
Craft Beer & Crabfest August 9
This festival has quickly become the most popular event in Cape May. Best yet, it is virtually the only summer festival, as most of our festivals were designed to attract visitors to Cape May in our “Shoulder” seasons.
Now I’m sure you don’t need any extra incentive to plan a trip to The Queen Victoria in August. Cape May is “hopping” with a plethora (I love that word) of dining, shopping and entertainment opportunities. On the other hand, a fun-filled event like this definitely adds an extra element of fun and excitement to an already great weekend.
Admission to the festival is free, as are the activities. Food and beer are purchased separately. The festival features:
All day live music
An old fashioned Victorian Circus
Crafts & food vendors
The first two of these festivals were wildly successful, so much so that it was a struggle to keep the beer and crabs in sufficient quantities. With 2 years of experience under their belts, the folks at MAC have gotten all the kinks worked out, so there will most assuredly be plenty of crabs and beer for everybody.
We still have a few rooms open for that weekend, so if you’re interested in attending this festival, be sure to call soon. Remember, 14,000 other people are reading this email too!
Lessons of History October 12th
This October marks the 3rd annual installment in MAC’s lecture series “Lessons of History”. I’ve got to tell you that I expect this one to be the best one yet, and that is saying a lot.
On October 12th, renowned author and constitutional expert David O. Stewart will be presenting a lecture on the Constitutional Convention of 1787. I’ve been reading his book on this topic (pictured above) for the last week or so and I am hooked. I’ve become sort of a history buff of late, with a particular interest in the Revolutionary era, so this is right up my ally.
I think it is safe to say that most of us have little knowledge or appreciation of how the constitution came to be, the individuals involved in its writing or the major issues and hurdles involved. This will be a fascinating and educational opportunity to listen to and meet one of America’s foremost authorities on the writing of the Constitution.
That weekend also happens to be Victorian Weekend, which is jammed packed with other fun and exciting events, including the NJ Wine Growers Fall Festival. It is a wonderful weekend every year in Cape May.
Seating is limited to 200, so make your plans soon.
Great Reasons to Return to The Queen Victoria
Cape May Music Festival May 25 – Jun 12
Doug & Anna Marie’s 10th QV anniversary celebration May 26
Exit 0 Jazz Festival, May 30 – Jun 1
An Evening with Groucho, Jun 7
3rd Annual Tribute to George Mesterhazy Jun 8
Restaurant Week, Jun 1-8
Cape May Harborfest, Jun 14
Cape May Seafood Festival, Jun 28
Concert: The Hit Men, Jun 30
Concert: Melissa Manchester, Jul 7
Concert: Deana Martin, Jul 14
Concert: Broadway at the Beach, Jul 21
Concert: The Grass Roots, Jul 28
Concert: Poperazzi, Aug 4
Craft Beer & Crab Festival Aug 9-10
Concert: Rita Coolidge, Aug 11
Concert: The Kingston Trio, Aug 18
Food & Wine Festival, Sep 13-21
Cape May Dragon Boat Festival, Sep 27-28
Sea Glass Festival, Sep 27-28
Oktoberfest, Oct 4
Victorian Weekend, Oct 10-13
Lessons of History Lecture, Oct 12
NJ Lighthouse Challenge, Oct 18-19
NJ Audubon Autumn Festival Oct 24-26
Sherlock Holmes Mystery Weekend Nov 7-9
Exit Zero Jazz Festival, (Fall) Nov 7-9
Concert: “Broadway & Beyond”, Nov 15
Room of The Month
I can’t believe it, but I’ve NEVER featured Balmoral in any of our monthly newsletters. It is an amazing oversight, which is by no means intentional.
In fact, Balmoral is one of my favorite rooms. It is located on the 1st floor of the Queen’s Cottage. It is a beautifully decorated room with a queen sized bed, pretty Victorian antique furniture, and a very large bathroom with a HUGE whirlpool tub as well as a step-in shower. We’ve re-arranged the furniture a bit since this photograph was taken. It still has all the same furniture, but the new arrangement makes the room feel much more comfortable.
Balmoral was one of the many rooms at The Queen Victoria that was upgraded to a wall-mounted 32” flat panel high-def TV, so all of you who have strained your eyes in the past can look forward to easier viewing next time.
Oh, I almost forgot to mention that one of the most popular features of Balmoral is a dedicated parking space.
Gift Shop Featured Item(s) Teapot Cozy & Tea Wallet
I’m stepping way over the line this month and featuring two gift shop items in the same newsletter. I know it’s crazy, but that is what I’m feeling today.
You’ve probably seen Anna Marie or me serve tea to our guests, perhaps yourself, in a beautiful and cleverly designed teapot cozy. Not only do we use these extensively, we also sell them in our gift shop. These are great cozies, which keep your tea hot and your table clean; a great combination. We sell them either with the teapot or without. We’re always getting new designs in, so the selection is different almost every time I look in the storage closet. If you’re serious about your tea, then you really need to treat yourself to a teapot cozy.
So, you are a serious tea drinker and you’ve been carrying your favorite teas around with you in a baggie because the restaurants you frequent, or perhaps your office building, just doesn’t serve the high quality tea that you insist upon. That baggie works, but let’s face it … it’s tacky. Can’t you just imagine opening this classy, beautifully crafted tea wallet to select a tea bag of your favorite tea from one of the nine pockets contained inside?
Remember, Mother’s day is coming up soon. These would make excellent Mother’s days gifts for your tea drinking mother.
Teapot Cozy $21.95
with teapot $29.95
Tea Wallet, only $10.00
Favorite Photo Spring Flowers at The Queen Victoria
There are lots of things I like about this photo. First of all, our urn is filled with truly beautiful blooms, which put me in a happy mood every time I look at them. I also love the bright, sunny day and blue sky that made it a little difficult to take this picture because it was too bright. If you look closely at the sign behind the urn, which is certainly my favorite sign in town, you’ll notice the “No Vacancy” sign hanging from the bottom. We LOVE that.
This is the time of year when we start hanging that sign up a lot more frequently. Of course, advance planning on your part keeps you from hearing about it on the phone when you call to book instead of seeing it while you’re staying here, knowing your in the best place in Cape May (in my ever so humble opinion).
Next at Cape May Stage The Mountaintop (May 21 through June 13)
If you’re into serious drama, then Cape May Stage’s inaugural play for 2014 might be just the ticket for you.
The Mountaintop is the fictional account of Martin Luther King’s last night on earth set entirely in Room 306 of the Lorraine Motel on the eve of his assassination on April 4, 1968
This is what Cape May Stage says about the play on their website:
“This powerful drama weaves a surrealistic fantasy about a conversation between King and the mysterious hotel maid who brings him coffee and prompts him to confront his life, his past, his legacy, and the future of African-Americans.”
With the advent of larger and larger affordable flat panel TVs, most of you have become pretty accustomed to a big screen. For a long time we were waiting for our little TVs, many of them with actual tubes, to die before replacing them with larger TVs. Most of the darned things refuse to give up, however, so this Spring we made the executive decision to install 32” LCD High Definition TVs in almost every room.
Now I’m assuming that most of you don’t come to The Queen Victoria to watch TV, but I’m pretty sure that you’ll enjoy not straining your eyes from across the room to watch your favorite ball game while you’re at The Queen Victoria.
This one is in Lilly Langtree. As you can see, it doesn’t really fit into the Victorian decor. It does have a great picture, though, which compensates a little bit.
Lots of New Stuff New Rug in Prince Albert dining room
Anna Marie and I have been having a lot of fun redecorating The Queen Victoria in small ways this Spring. One of the changes we made was to replace the rug in the Prince Albert dining room.
Though the colors are similar to the old one, this new rug has such a rich look to it. It is also incredibly plush, making it very comfy for Anna Marie when she is pouring your coffee. You do want her to be comfy when she is pouring your coffee, don’t you?
This is just one of many upgrades that we’ve been making to your favorite place in Cape May. To see the rest of them you’ll have to plan a return visit!
Restaurant of the Month Union Park
Anna Marie and I took my Aunt and Uncle out to Union Park the other night and I’ve got to tell you that we all LOVED it. We went early enough to catch the “Earlybird” special, which made it pretty affordable too.
I started things off with a tomato bisque soup with crab meat that was phenomenally good. Anna Marie started with a very nice mixed green salad, mixing her own dressing from olive oil and balsamic vinegar, which is her preference. Terrific rolls made both perfect.
I enjoyed the Braised Short rib entree, while Anna Marie ordered a beautiful piece of Salmon. We both savored every bite.
We don’t usually order dessert, but since it was part of the package, we both ordered the mixed berry tart, which was delicious. The tart itself was a thin very crispy delight that was delicious.
Union Park is arguably one of the prettiest restaurants in Cape May, with a very elegant up-scale feel to it. It is a short walk from The Queen Victoria, so it is convenient too. In the warmer months they serve dinner on the outside porch, affording their guests a view of the ocean and the enjoyment of the fabulous ocean breeze that we all love so much.
Union Park is a winner that we highly recommend.
Visit The Queen Victoria Soon!
Cape May’s Premier Bed and Breakfast
Make your reservations today for a romantic getaway at The Queen Victoria Bed and Breakfast. We are looking forward to helping you plan your next visit!
Doug & Anna Marie McMain, Owners/Innkeepers The Queen Victoria Bed & Breakfast