When you think of an evening out in Cape May, you probably don't conjure up images of sitting in front of a cozy fireplace by a bar and sipping on a winter ale while listening to some live acoustic music.

But you should, Congress Hall manger John Daily says.

The Brown Room, Congress Hall's cozy "living room," is open all year round and is the perfect place to spend an offseason evening.

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The Brown Room connects Congress Hall's lobby with its ballroom and dining rooms. The space is comfortable, yet luxurious, Daily says, with its focal point being its real wood-burning fireplace surrounded by ample seating options and a bar.

"There's tables and seating all around the bar," Daily says," including couches, wingback chairs and casino chairs. One of the nice things is people can mix and move the furniture around to accommodate their party's size."

It's a great small-party meeting space or a place to get to know someone a little better, he said.

Entertainment:

The Brown Room features live music Thursdays to Saturdays in the offseason and every night of the week during the summer.

This weekend, patrons can enjoy happy hour with Ann Oswald at 5 p.m. Thursday and Friday, and check out Darin MacDonald 8 p.m. Saturday.

Daily says MacDonald performs in The Brown Room most Saturday nights and has a huge following.

"He's from New Zealand so he has this amazing accent and his music is awesome. I would say his genre is a mix of Elton John and Billy Joel."

Food and Drink:

Buy one, get one free appetizer 5 to 9 p.m. Sundays to Wednesdays. Happy hour is 5 to 8 p.m. Thursdays with live music, drink specials and complimentary hors d'oeuvres from 5 to 6 p.m.

For those looking for a full meal, Congress Hall's Blue Pig Tavern offers breakfast, lunch and dinner.

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