Members of the Mayo family have owned No. 570 for more than a century, and have run it as an accommodation at least since the 1930s, when it was called Mayo’s Cape Codder. At the time, Charles Atkins Mayo (b 1885) lived here with his wife, Mary A. Mayo (b 1886). Mayo was a fisherman whose son, Charles A. Mayo Jr. (b 1910), was nationally renowned for his pursuit of the giant bluefin. In 1962, Mayo Jr. was described by Sports Illustrated as “perhaps the finest tuna skipper on the Atlantic coast.” The Cape Codder is now owned by his son, Charles Atkins “Stormy” Mayo III (b 1943), a founder of the Provincetown Center for Coastal Studies who currently directs its right whale habitat studies.
To call the rooms at the Cape Codder “modest” might be overstating it a bit. Their appealing simplicity — absent ostentation — will remind anyone of my generation of the kind of accommodation one would expect in a small town in the late 1950s or early 1960s. As a consequence the rates seem like something from another time. In 2011, rooms could be had for as little as $60 a night in season. At the same time, it has what few bed-and-breakfasts can claim: its own private beach directly across the street, No. 573, an open waterfront lot that the Mayos also own.