Don’t mention 1983 to a local.
For many years, Newport was the home to the America’s cup race series. So, apart from wrenching the America’s Cup from the US for the first time in 132 years, Newport is also the place for the uber-wealthy. The island started to become a fave for wealthy southern plantation owners and traders seeking to escape the heat. They began to build summer cottages around waterfront land, taking in the views of Narrangasett Bay.
The bay side land also has a myriad of country clubs, which hug the waterfronts with magnificent views across the water.
By the turn of the 20th century, many of the nation’s wealthiest families were summering in Newport, including the industrialist Vanderbilt and property magnate of NYC, Astor. also, presidents Kennedy and Eisenhower both made Newport the sites of their “Summer White Houses”. so, all in all, a very influential town with some seriously wealthy and powerful residents.
Our travel from NYC to Newport was not what I would say interesting or scenic…it rained, nay poured the whole way from the outskirts of the Bronx to the Providence turn-off, almost 3 hours of non-stop, at time torrential rain. Not that we are complaining – it was the first rain we had encountered the whole trip.
There is not a lot to Newport, other than this would be a wonderful place to while away a summer or two…or several. As you drive the coastal route and take in the views across the bay and back to the shoreline, modest “cottages” are abundant on large parcels of land. As you drive along what they describe as the mansion drive, a whole new world opens up. The mansions are more like French chateaux – large, gracious and elegant on large parcels of land. This is old world wealth, not the nouveau wealth that we saw around Pebble Beach.
But some locals opt for a more modest residence in which to spend their summers…
Not much else that can be said about Newport really – other than it makes Malua Bay look rather pov…but Newport is a lovely seaside town and has a lot of cred about it.