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Doo Wop Discussion #40 - Matador Motel (Read 13399 times)
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Doo Wop Discussion #40 - Matador Motel
Jun 4th, 2010, 1:58pm
 
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« Last Edit: Feb 21st, 2011, 12:25pm by MMM »  

Martin Melucci


...no matter how much you like an old building, someone will eventually come along and knock it down to build a "better" one. But that rarely happens. - Tony Visconti
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Re: Doo Wop Discussion #40 - Matador Motel
Reply #1 - Jun 4th, 2010, 1:59pm
 
The Matador is one of the later day Mid Century styled Motels built on the island – it opened in 1970, and is therefore celebrating its 40th Anniversary this year.  I believe the same family - the Del Monte’s – has owned it since it was built.  Its name seems to carry over less in theme throughout and more in the colors and other appearance touches, like the style of the signs, etc.  It has an interesting location – “16th Avenue and the Beach”.  Unlike the Crest, very few Motels in North Wildwood sit this close to the beach.  This also places it at the very Northern end of the Boardwalk.  So, if you want a place to stay in North Wildwood, be close to the beach, near to the Boardwalk but away from its noise and crowds, the Matador seems to be a really good choice.
 
The Matador is a four-floor Motel, and is T-shaped in its main sections housing the rooms.  It has what I call a west wing, which is placed north-south, and an east wing, which is laid out east-west.  It has units located on all four levels of the west wing (though the 1st floor only has units in its southern portion, near the pool and office), and more units on the 2nd & 3rd levels of the east wing. There are appx. 55 units in the Motel, with numerous unit types available.  An elevator is located where the two wings connect.  A large deck covers the 4th floor of the east wing, accessible where the two portions meet.  An additional, relatively smaller (but still sizeable) 2nd level deck is at the southeast end off the property, and is accessible from stairs leading from the ground, and also between the 2nd & 3rd floors of the east wing.  This deck ends up giving the entire Motel complex a lowercase h-shape.  The 4th floor seems to have been added sometime in the ‘80’s.  I’m guessing the long deck at that level was added at the same time, or not long after.  The 2nd floor deck is original.
 
Red, in keeping with the name, is used prominently to fine effect – on the doors, the balcony edges, and all signage/logos/etc. In the past, red louvered outer doors were used – not sure when these were removed. Off white brick-face trims the space between units, end sections of the wings, and surrounds the railing dividers around the pool and decks.  It is also used to trim the exterior staircases that are at both the north and south ends, which jut out perpendicularly.  These staircases also seem to have been added at the time of the 4th floor addition.  These replaced stairs that used to cross more closely and parallel to middle units in each section of the north-south wing.  They each have a downward sloping red/white “roof”, a nice touch to help shield the stairs.  Simple, white, flush mount lights sit between each unit.  Lamps by the decks, etc., sit atop black posts and perches, and the floor to ceiling glass outside the units is also trimmed in black.  Railings used by the unit’s balconies are curved vertical bars in white, and use the original design.  When the Matador was expanded, they seem to have duplicated the existing ones to match.  This style of railings are also used on the decks, though a portion of the 4th floor one has an area which uses newer white resin looking ones that are more of a solid surface – not sure why this is, other than to possibly shield off something from view.  The pool area uses newer railings with straight, white vertical bars, which have a more open horizontal extended section at the top.
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« Last Edit: Feb 21st, 2011, 12:25pm by MMM »  

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Re: Doo Wop Discussion #40 - Matador Motel
Reply #2 - Jun 4th, 2010, 2:00pm
 
The pool area is located in between the southern end of the two wings and the 2nd floor deck.  It’s mostly rectangular shaped, with rounded sections at the two “heads” – one looks like a kiddie pool, and the other is a raised hot tub with blue tile around its outer area.  More of the blue tile decorates the inner edges of the pool and hot tub.  An “M” Matador logo is in the pool’s bottom, in red.  A mural depicting the beach/ocean and a rowboat is painted on the 1st floor wall of the east-west wing that faces the pool area.  The boat is particularly appropriate with the North Wildwood Lifeguard building on the beach near the Matador, and their use of the Matador’s lot to store equipment in the off-season.  Earthy/sandy colored tile surrounds the pool area, with real palms used, planted in pots.  Red and white vinyl strap chairs (my favorite type) are used throughout the exterior – lounges by the pool, armchairs by the rooms, and both are used on the decks.
 
As part of this past off-season’s renovations, the 4th floor deck’s surface was repaired and resurfaced with a (to my eye) sandy, but floor like finish.  Balcony surfaces got similar treatment, but with more of a stone like look.  Existing exhaust stacks on the 4th floor deck got coated/finished/built up and now serve as tables with granite tops and red pyramid shaped umbrellas.  A driveway travels between the pool area and 2nd level deck to connect the north and south sides of the property.
 
Parking is mostly on the north side, including some spaces under cover, with a few spaces near the office and pool, and also by the driveway.  A Townhouse sits next to southwest end of the Motel.  This is not the same as the “Family Apartment”, which is off site.  The Townhouse is a two floor, stucco clad structure, with a white base, and red trim.  It also has red/white soft awnings, white vertical railings, and a red shingle roof!  The lobby/office is at the southwestern end of the Motel, next to the pool area, and was renovated over this past off-season.  A red/white/black colored, rounded awning covers the immediate area leading to the office’s entrance.  A beautiful, new neon sign is above this area.  It depicts a Matador with the “M” logo in his cape, OFFICE, and a (NO) VACANCY indicator.  A red MATADOR neon sign sits rooftop at the southern end, facing west.  This duplicates a solid, raised sign once placed against the south wall, which was lit from behind in red.  Due to its design and layout, unlike most Motels in The Wildwoods, its back walls – one on each wing – are exposed.  Back walls to a Motel are most always nothing special, and if you drive up to the Matador from 16th, your first view of it, aside from the neon, is not from its “good side”. Which is too bad, because it’s an interesting Motel that such a first look doesn’t do justice to.  They seem to make the best of the situation by (like the rest of the Motel) keeping a fresh, clean appearance on each “back wall”.  On the east wing back wall, murals are painted – one replicating the rooftop neon design, but vertically and with “OCEANFRONT FAMILY RESORT” next to it, and the other replicating the look of the new Matador styled neon by the office.  These murals both help the wall from just looking like a big, white slab.
 
The Matador has mostly very fine reviews on TripAdvisor.  Much of whatever negative comments are there don’t seem to be of great significance.  Their Facebook page is very well developed, and is definitely worth a look if you haven’t seen it.  Many aspects of the Motel, including numerous upgrades and renovations, have documentation with photos, video, etc., above and beyond what I’ve come across from the internet presence of any other Motel on the island.  Between this, and their official site, the feeling of a family and staff that are strongly dedicated to the Motel is tangible.  It’s always great to see owners doing right by their Motels – it is obviously well loved by them.
 
I welcome your thoughts on the Matador.
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« Last Edit: Feb 21st, 2011, 12:26pm by MMM »  

Martin Melucci


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Re: Doo Wop Discussion #41 - Matador Motel
Reply #3 - Jun 5th, 2010, 12:05pm
 
I was in WW all too briefly the past two days and coincidentally, this is one of the few motels I took time to photograph. It really caught my eye on this visit as looking very well kept—even allowing for the fact that everything in the Wildwoods that's been cared for at all looks its best in June. Smiley
 

 

 

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Re: Doo Wop Discussion #41 - Matador Motel
Reply #4 - Jun 5th, 2010, 2:31pm
 
This place is definitely on my short list of places I want to stay at.  I've tried at least three different times over the past couple of years, they are always booked.  I guess that's a good thing!  I love the location, and it looks like it's well-taken care of.
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Re: Doo Wop Discussion #41 - Matador Motel
Reply #5 - Jun 5th, 2010, 2:42pm
 
wow!  now that is really a sharp place.   a sense of pride and a real tribute to the island.  some of the other owners should take notice.  
 
don't know much about this place being a crester, but will definintely take a ride by on my trips this summer.  thanks for the postings.
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Re: Doo Wop Discussion #41 - Matador Motel
Reply #6 - Jun 5th, 2010, 3:28pm
 
have not taken a close look at the Matador but maybe we will have to in the near futureSmiley Very nice...
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Re: Doo Wop Discussion #41 - Matador Motel
Reply #7 - Jun 5th, 2010, 6:39pm
 
It's in a very nice location, but it's also a little hidden away, so it doesn't have the visibility to people driving/walking by that many other Motels do.  I'd imagine that also helps keep it a little quieter, and I don't think it's hurt business.  It does get exposed to people using the north end of the Boardwalk though.
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Re: Doo Wop Discussion #41 - Matador Motel
Reply #8 - Jun 6th, 2010, 10:43am
 
GREAT write up as always, Martin!
 
The Matador is a real gem. The owners consistently renovate and update the property, as evidenced this year by the new 4th floor sundeck and that awesome new neon sign. They seem to have a very loyal clientele that comes back year after year.  
 
Very interesting point about the Matador's orientation and locale close to the beach making it similar to many of the motels in the Crest, and something of a rarity in North Wildwood. Given that and it's situation at the start of the Boardwalk, this could be the most unique location for a motel on the island.
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Re: Doo Wop Discussion #41 - Matador Motel
Reply #9 - Jun 6th, 2010, 11:45am
 
That might help make it a good choice for a "Crester" who usually stays in a beachfront Motel, and is interested in branching out North.
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Martin Melucci


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Re: Doo Wop Discussion #41 - Matador Motel
Reply #10 - Jun 6th, 2010, 6:18pm
 
I would certainly think so. The Matador seems to combine many desirable elements, in terms of its layout and situation alone.  On top of that, it is clearly run extremely well and consistently upgrades to make the property even better, while staying true to the original design/theme. Don't think we could ask for any more than that.
 
By the way, the motel gave Martin a shout-out and included a link to this discussion on their Facebook page:
 
http://www.facebook.com/pages/North-Wildwood-NJ/Matador-Oceanfront-Resort-Motel/ 129233071430?v=wall
 
This place is awesome!  Cheesy
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Re: Doo Wop Discussion #41 - Matador Motel
Reply #11 - Jun 6th, 2010, 11:14pm
 
Wow, thanks Al.  I didn't know...  I signed up with a personal Facebook account last fall, but I don't use it - I just read the open pages, like the one you setup for Wildwood 365.  I'll send an e-mail to The Matador to thank them.
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Re: Doo Wop Discussion #41 - Matador Motel
Reply #12 - Jun 7th, 2010, 4:47pm
 
Thanks for starting this great thread Martin.  I've been eyeing the Matador for a little while now, and now I really want to stay there soon.  Back in late winter I actually tried booking for this summer, but they just didn't have the weeks I needed available.  (I've heard they book up fast with many repeat/regular customers.)  So I booked further up north at the Harbor Light Motor Inn.  I didn't know it at the time, but both places are owned by the same family (the Del Montes).  I dealt with Robert Del Monte during my booking/payment process, and he couldn't have been nicer or more helpful.  You really get the feeling from them that they genuinely care about the customer's experience and maintaining their properties.  I'm looking forward to my first (of two) stays there--just 13 short days from now!  I've really grown to like the Anglesea area recently, but the Matador is in such a great spot as well.  Like you said, it's right at the northern start of the boardwalk, but still in a relatively quiet area away from the really prominent "boardwalk buzz".  And you're still not too far of a (picturesque) walk away from the Anglesea/Lighthouse/Seawall area.  I also like how it's right at the beach (with that neat beach playground for kids in their "front lawn") which is a far less wider beach to hoof than Wildwood Proper.  When I walk by the Matador it almost has the feel like that's the "private beach" for their customers only, even though it's obviously not.  I'm hoping to get my mother and two brothers (and their families) to go back to Wildwood for the first time in many years soon, and I keep thinking the Matador would be the ideal place for us to stay.      
 
BTW, ever notice that for the North Wildwood entry on Wikipedia, one of the photos shows the view looking out from the Matador?  
 
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_Wildwood,_New_Jersey
 
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/88/WildwoodBoardwalkAbove.JPG
 
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« Last Edit: Jun 7th, 2010, 11:34pm by Sean Carragher »  

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Re: Doo Wop Discussion #41 - Matador Motel
Reply #13 - Jun 7th, 2010, 8:06pm
 
I hadn't seen that picture until now - thanks Sean.  The beach playground is nice - I wonder how that came to be there?
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Re: Doo Wop Discussion #41 - Matador Motel
Reply #14 - Jun 8th, 2010, 4:17pm
 
I hadn't seen that photo before either. Very cool; thanks, Sean!
 
Also always been very curious about the little "private beach" playground there. Something to ask the owners about...
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