When our September 2020 Rhine river cruise was canceled last year due to the pandemic, we took a trip where we could gaze at a different body of water – the harbor in Newport, RI. We enjoyed our getaway, but more than anything, I loved the hotel with its beautiful view of the tranquil harbor. I decided then that I wanted to bring my mother back once it was safe for separate households to be together. With all of us fully vaccinated, my mom, my sister Michelle, and I headed to Newport in mid-May.
I don’t want to make this post into an ad for the Brenton Hotel, but I really love that place. And the suite was the hit with mom and Michelle that I hoped it would be. A few photos below.
Mom enjoying the view from the balcony outside of her room:
Michelle relaxing in the living room:
All of us, including a seagull, enjoying the rooftop terrace:
Other than enjoying the hotel, we hit the standard Newport attractions that Jim and I previewed last year.
We walked the Cliff Walk:
Had lunch at Castle Hill Inn; and though the wind forced us inside, the room had large windows that offered expansive ocean views:
Visited the Breakers, the only ‘cottage’ open during the pandemic (masks still required inside):
We did a few new things this year, including a couple walking tours – one along Bellevue Avenue to get a history of the stately mansions and also an evening ghost tour. I captured a lot of ‘spirits’ on our tour!
We also caught the filming of a new HBO series by the creator of Downtown Abbey – “The Gilded Age.” They seemed to be filming everywhere, and some of the crew were staying at our hotel. Can’t wait to watch it with my travel companions!
But the biggest change was SHOPPING! Jim hates to shop, and given we were afraid to go inside and touch things last September, we didn’t do any shopping last year. This year shopping was a major event. Michelle called the town “Cape May on steroids” – I think that was a huge compliment.
My mom is a big JFK/Jackie fan, so I was hoping to find a tour to visit locales relevant to their time there. Although there isn’t such a tour, we found a number of locations during our research: the house (now condos) where they had their engagement party; the Hammersmith Farm, where they had their reception; the Vanderbilt Hotel, where Jackie’s father either got drunk or was drugged so he couldn’t walk her down the aisle; and of course, St. Mary’s church where they were married.
We capped off our trip with dinner at the White Horse Tavern, established in 1673 and supposedly the oldest tavern in America – which was also Jackie’s favorite place to dine when she was in town. Here is her table, which sits in the corner of the bar by itself:
Cheers to Newport, the Brenton Hotel, Mom, Michelle and the vaccine!!