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February 01, 2023

Philly developer proposes luxury resort lodge in Cape May County

The 30-acre parcel is offshore in Dennis Township. Clermont Lodge would feature hotel rooms, bungalows, cabins and a wedding venue

Development Resorts
Clermont Lodge Cape May County Provided Image/DAS Architects

The proposed Clermont Lodge luxury resort in Dennis Township, Cape May County is shown in the rendering above.

Philadelphia-based developer Brickstone Realty will pursue the construction of an offshore resort in Cape May County in the coming years, planning documents show.

The 30-acre parcel for the proposed Clermont Lodge is in Dennis Township, about ten miles west of Sea Isle City. The wooded site, currently undeveloped land, is located off the busy intersection of New Jersey Routes 9 and 83.

Billed as a luxury retreat, the resort would feature a total of 120 guest rooms, including a three-story lodge with 56 hotel rooms. There would also be 40 bungalows and 24 cabins on the property. The number of rooms proposed would make the resort eligible for a New Jersey liquor license.

John Connors, president of Brickstone Realty Corporation, told the Cape May County Herald that his vision for Clermont Lodge was inspired by stays at the Cottage Grove Inn in California's Napa Valley, the Yachtsman Hotel in Kennebunkport, Maine and the Woodloch Resort in the Poconos.

In addition to the guest rooms, the proposed lodge would have a tavern, playhouse, two event barns and a man-made lake. Other amenities would include pools, a firepit, pickleball court, croquet lawn and walking trails. Connors said the retreat would be Cape May County's first purpose-built wedding venue

Brickstone has been behind notable building restorations in Philadelphia such as the the Wanamaker Building, the Lits Building and the Hale Building.

The cost of the proposed lodge in Cape May County is estimated to be between $65-$70 million. Connors' application is expected to be presented to the Dennis Township Consolidated Land Use board in February. The developer has submitted variance applications for issues related to zoning, parking and building heights.

To the north and south, the lodge site is surrounded by residential properties. The Garden State Parkway is to the east and Route 9 to the west. Brickstone has hired a traffic engineer to study the area around the proposed resort entrance at Routes 9 and 83, which gets especially busy during the summer travel season.

Connors anticipates that the permitting process could take another 12-18 months, followed by another year or two before the resort's construction would begin some time in 2026.