Chatham Bars Inn – Cape Cod Family Weekend

Chatham Bars Inn is THE place to stay if you are on Cape Cod.

chatham bars inn
Photo Cred: my brother-in-law, Bryan Donovan

It’s a place my husband and I have driven by numerous times, slowly with the windows down in awe of the beauty, but have never had a chance to stay…until now!

We were there to attend a friend’s wedding (and it was the most beautiful wedding I have ever been to in my life!) Let me tell you, it did not disappoint.

A little about Chatham Bars Inn

The Chatham Bars Inn, or CBI as it is known, is located on Lower Cape Cod in Chatham, MA. It is in walking distance to the quaint downtown area with shops and restaurants and also one of the most picturesque lighthouses on the Cape.

It was the first luxury hotel on Cape Cod, developed in 1914 by a wealthy Boston stockbroker. It was originally a semi-private hunting lodge for wealthy Boston vacationers and soon became Cape Cod’s all well known and elegant tourist destination.

Cool fact: the hotel had it’s own farm! It provided fresh produce and dairy products for the guests meals.

Awards include:

  • the prestigious Forbes Four-Star award.
  • It is a member of The Leading Hotels of the World
  • named one of the top resorts in the world by Travel & Leisure Magazine
  • best hotel on Cape Cod by Boston Magazine.

Our stay at CBI

I felt like a movie star. A movie star from the early 1900’s. While everything is updated and fresh, there is definitely still an air of the old-world charm about this place. It is simply fabulous.

Our rooms

I had the pleasure of experiencing two different accommodations at CBI as my mom stayed in a single bed room in the main inn and my husband, son and I stayed in two room cottage right off of the main inn with his family (Privet cottage).

My mom’s room in the main inn was very nice and had access to a deck shared with two other rooms on the third floor. The room was cozy, but very small. It would have been hard to spend much time in there with a toddler. Bonus: we could see her balcony from our front door!


Privet cottage was perfect traveling with a toddler! It had a common room and two rooms, each with their own bathrooms.

Chatham Bars Inn Privet Cottage
The common room of Privet cottage. Another B. Donovan original – his panorama game was ON POINT this weekend.

The common room was complete with a pull out sofa, two extra sitting chairs, a large screen TV, a dining room a table, a fireplace and two large closets. I think my little guy’s two favorite things were sitting at the table to eat and playing in and out of the closets as he could actually work these door handles (mommy was not ready for that milestone this weekend – especially since this included the bathroom doors and bedroom doors that easily locked from the inside – a toddler mom’s nightmare lol but we managed to not get locked apart despite a few close calls).


And OH MY GOODNESS can we talk about The Beds?!

We spent all morning both mornings we were there just snuggling and watching Disney Jr. This was definitely one of my favorite parts of the trip. Our bed at home isn’t that big and is high off the ground so I’ve been too afraid to bring him in it with me since he went mobile. So morning snuggles in bed = heaven for mommy. While drinking our Nespresso, might I add (every room has a Nespresso machine!)

For the little guy, I brought his pack n’ play despite the fact that the hotel offered cribs upon request. If I have the chance to bring our pack n’ play I always do. I mean it travels easy by design, right? And I feel like it gives him a sense of familiarity in a new place – which could just be in my head but he slept ALL night both nights (which is huge since he has been getting his molars) so I’m not going to question it! Also, we got one of CBI’s cribs for my mom’s room in case she wanted to use it while we were at the wedding and it had a bug on it 😦   Which is no one’s fault as I’m sure they aren’t used too often, but just reaffirms my decision to bring the pack n’ play.

Which brings me to The Service.

All I can say is WOW. The service is hands down the best part about this place. The rooms are nice, the view is great, but the service is what makes you feel like a movie star. Everyone is so nice and completely bends over backwards for every little thing.

Case in point: We were traveling with bottles and I completely forgot to bring dish soap to clean them as we used them. We stopped by the front desk to ask for some thinking we could just get a little cup from the restaurant kitchen or something. I didn’t need much and I definitely don’t need it to be fancy. The girl at the front desk smiled but definitely looked like she didn’t get that request too often. Without even hesitating she told us she would have some sent right to our room. A little while later, a member of the staff showed up with a brand new bottle of Dawn dish soap with the sticker from CVS still on it. We are pretty sure they made a special trip to store JUST FOR US!

Another funny story: my husband didn’t realize our car was parked about 20 feet away and asked valet to bring our car so we could go to brunch. The valet was so incredibly nice and accommodating and walked to our car and drove it the few feet to where we were standing! By that time we realized the car was RIGHT THERE all along! hahahaha Hopefully he didn’t think we were just being jerks LOL

All in all, we absolutely loved our family stay at Chatham Bars Inn. It was everything I had thought it would be and MORE. And honestly the service really had a lot to do with it.

A HUGE thank you, first, to the Magner family for letting us be a part of such a special and completely remarkable wedding weekend. We enjoyed it more than I could ever express. Thank you to Tim’s parents for the weekend in Privet cottage, and to my mom for all of your help with Colin! We love you all xoxoxo

Here’s a few more pics from CBI:




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