Newport, RI City Guide {UPDATE}

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Today’s Newport, RI City Guide update comes to us from original guide writer, Andrea McHugh, the founder and editor of Newport Stylephile, Andrea visited Newport on whim and nested there soon after. Today, a decade later, she happily resides (and shops!) in the city-by-the-sea and today she is updating her detailed local’s guide to shopping, eating, drinking, site-seeing, sailing, overnighting and celebrating in Newport. Thank you, Andrea for this wonderful guide! –Stephanie

Read the full guide after the jump…

Be sure to check out this Google Map with all of the below listings!

Broadway/Washington Square Area

Madcap Coffee At the top of Broadway’s “restaurant row,” Bistro 162 takes its cue from its European counterparts with a “Hometown Feel, Downtown Appeal” motto.

Corner Café Proves that Irish and Portuguese breakfasts can live together in epicurean harmony. Giant cups o’ joe ensures your caffeinated cravings are quickly met.

Empire Tea &Coffee Students, professionals and hipsters commune at this Broadway hub; some for the coffee, others for bubble tea, some to bury their faces in their laptops, some to community organize, others to play board games. A ton of loose teas are on hand for the anti-java crowd.

The Fifth Element A casual but hip hangout populated by locals, “The Fifth,” as its most often called, offers a somewhat eclectic menu, popular cocktails list (including the savory “Element Martini”) and often times, live music.

Ocean Coffee Roasters In the heart of Washington Square, this spot attracts locals for their morning (and afternoon) caffeine fix.

Mad Hatter Bakery Cupcakes are king at this Broadway bakery across from City Hall. Ethnic favorites too, like Irish soda bread and St. Joseph’s Day Italian zeppoles are worth every calorie.

Perro Salado A cozy, eclectic Mexican cantina set inside an early 18th-century home, each dining space is distinctively imperfect in the warmest way. The snug back bar is the heart of the building with windows open wide in the warmer months and the fire crackles when temperatures drop. It would be a sin to miss the guacamole served with homemade tortilla chips, warm tostones and toasted pipians (pair with their signature spicy cucumber margarita).

Salvation Café A newly renovated, eclectic eatery that is hip and usually hopping. A creative but unpretentious menu will please diverse palates including with ample choices for vegetarians. Don’t be intimidated by a crowded fron; the back is an expansive space with a chic barn feel. Still best known for their pad Thai, creative cocktails and sangria served by the jarful.

The Tavern on Broadway In a newly constructed space formerly occupied by two neighboring businesses, look for classic American dishes in a comfortable setting. Specialty drinks, 20 beers on tap, full wine list, seating for more than 70 and lunch and dinner daily, brunch on Sunday.

White Horse Tavern America’s oldest operating tavern (serving since 1673), this eternally dim nod to colonial architecture boasts exposed beams, clapboard walls, cavernous fireplaces and wide-plank floorboards underfoot. White-linen-dressed tables are illuminated by romantic candlelight; a simple ambiance for rich dishes, including their signature lobster bisque and beef Wellington.

Karma Designer Consignment Boutique How does Dior at a discount sound? Thought so. Find designer duds for a fraction of retail at this upscale boutique. 13 Touro St., Newport, RI 02840, (401) 846-0940
Karol Richardson This London-born designer has a curated collection of clothing, handbags, shoes, jewelry, and gift items at her Newport boutique including pieces by AG Jeans, Chan Luu, Hobo, Subtle Luxury and more.

Kristina Richards Studio Denim to designer cocktail dresses—think Ella Moss, Alice & Olivia, Hudson, Botkier, Milly, Rebecca Minkoff and Shoshanna.

Hilltop Sophisticated and centrally-located, Hilltop’s room each have their own, individual luxury style with gourmet breakfasts daily. The inn caters to mature clientele as children over 12 years of age are welcome.

Chart House Inn As nautical style meets casual elegance at this circa 1880 inn, if you wake up in the middle of the night, the décor may have you believe you’re out to sea.

Newport, RI City Guidephoto courtesy of Discover Newport

Upper Thames, Mid-Thames Street & Historic Hill

Brick Alley Pub Synonymous with Newport itself for more than 25 years, BAP or “The Brick,” is about local lore and comfort food. Burgers are king here (with big ‘ol steak fries) and bits of Newport swag from regattas to the US Open to retired street signs and license plates are hoisted and hung across seemingly every inch.

El Perrito The counter-service cousin to Perro Salado, this super-casual BYOB spot is perfect for quick eats when you want something fresh and savory before hitting the town.

Ristorante Lucia Authentic Northern Italian cuisine on popular Thames Street. Two dining rooms offer two different experiences: one oozes authentic trattoria with soft lighting and crisp linens while the other is a casual pizzeria. Both offer the same menu with the same fresh, simple ingredients and ample vegetarian dishes.

Smoke House Barbecue + Summer Cocktails Newly renovated “smoke pit with a sweet side; a New England staple with a nod to the South; an adventurous spirit with a tendency to hang loose.” Mason jar cocktails, craft beers and artisan whiskeys complement a menu packed with handpicked American favorites.

Brick Market Place Four acres of more than two dozen clothing, shoe, jewelry and gift shops. Enough said.

Green Envy Eco-friendly boutique in Brick Market Place that doesn’t skimp on style. Artisan accessories amid colorful, soft, eco-chic clothing for men and women.

Pleasant Surprise Curious and irreverent curios for that person that has everything (because chances are they never received a “crazy cat lady” action figure).

Style Newport Style Newport Jewelry with a nautical twist with sterling, gold and enamel flag charms that are handcrafted in Rhode Island.

The Almondy Inn How does homemade breakfast and afternoon wine and cheese served in a restored Victorian sound? This Inn located on Historic Hill is a stone’s throw away from all the shops, restaurants and attractions that make Newport unique.

Mill Street Inn Centrally-located 19th century mill building-cum-small modern hotel with uncommonly found modern décor including exposed brick walls, beamed ceilings and rooftop patio.

Vanderbilt Grace The widely-praised boutique hotel was originally commissioned by Alfred Gwynne Vanderbilt in 1909 for his mistress Agnes O’Brien Ruiz. Here you’ll find an extraordinary art collection and luxury rooms, a Rooftop Deck perfect for sunset cocktails during the warmer months (and open to the public, so if you’re not staying there you can still partake); a spa for pampering; the Terrace Garden, and the critically-acclaimed restaurant, Muse by Jonathan Cartwright.

Newport, RI City Guidephoto courtesy of Discover Newport

Lower Thames Street & Ocean Drive

Asterisk Once a service garage with the doors still in place and lifted during warmer months, Asterisk’s adopts a Manhattan-bistro feel with an open kitchen, high ceilings and warm décor. The menu is a mix of land and sea and their experienced bartenders shake a mean espresso martini.

Café Zelda One part sailor’s tavern, three parts semi-formal dining room, and the two areas are equally welcoming. Ever had chicken fried lobster? Here’s your chance.

Scales and Shells No reservations, no credit cards. With its Fisherman’s Wharf restaurant feel, daily specials on the chalkboard and open kitchen, this spot has attracted crowds (on a first-come first-serve) for decades. Landlubbers will be lost in this seafood haven.

Island Outfitters Perpetuating Newport’s preppy persona for men and women with tons of Vineyard Vines, Lilly Pulitzer, Milly, Holebrook, Lacoste and Sperry.

Down Under Jewelry Carries celeb-loving lines including Alexis Bittar, Echo and the Dreamer, Me & Ro, Wendy Mink and more.

Rose Island Lighthouse Ever wanted to fulfill that dream of being a lighthouse keeper? One of the only places in the world you can sleep in a working lighthouse. Stay for the night or stay for the week and work the lighthouse.

Midtown Oyster Bar A new restaurant in a more than a century-old building, here’s you’ll find more than 40 beers, mouth-watering burgers, entrees from land and sea, and as the name implies, a raw bar with oysters from coast to coast. Daily service for lunch, dinner and late-night eats.

Castle Hill Inn & Resort Perched on a private, 40-acre peninsula with panoramic ocean and bay views, this former private mansion offers respite at the inn, a private chalet, and ocean front cottages. No stranger to good press, Castle Hill was voted one of the top hotels in the world by Conde Nast Traveler and Travel & Leisure, and New York Times called it ‘the best spot in town.’

OceanCliff Once the site of lavish parties and society affairs, this boutique hotel surrounded by 10 rolling acres and overlooking where Narragansett Bay meets the Atlantic Ocean. Here you’ll find 25 plush guestrooms in a mansion setting but with modern conveniences, plus the on-site Safari Restaurant and Lounge.

 

Bowen’s & Bannister’s Wharves

22 Portside The seasonal outdoor annex to 22 Bowen’s Wine Bar & Grille at dock’s edge has an enviable wine list (more than 35 wines by the glass and 650 bottles), light fare and raw bar, but it’s the prime people watching real estate that’s key.

The Black Pearl In the summer, the Pearl’s patio is bustling. Inside, the former sail loft has two dining spaces: the formal Commodore’s Room, and the relaxed tavern, with spindle-back chairs and casual menu.

The Cooke House The epicenter of Newport’s social scene on bustling Bannister’s Wharf, this historic four-story building is situated from the underground up this way: The Boom Boom Room nightclub, the wharf-level Candy Store (a more casual dining space), the Bistro Bar (the main floor of the original house), the Mid-Way (a bar overlooking Bannister’s and Bowen’s wharves, and on the top level, the Sky Bar and adjoining porch (the most elegant of the dining rooms). Peppered with memorabilia of Newport’s era in the America’s Cup spotlight, the Cooke House is a must-visit for your see and be seen lunch or best dressed night out.

Coffee Grinder This tiny outpost sits at the end of Bannister’s Wharf where four-legged friends are as welcome as their human counterparts. Sit on an Adirondack and take it all in or grab and go.
The Cookie Jar This sweet spot on Bannister’s Wharf seems to supernaturally permeate the air around it with the scent of freshly baked chocolate chip cookies daily. 29 Bowens Wharf, Newport, (401) 846-5078

Fluke Wine, Bar & Kitchen Known for expertly crafted drinks (think: fresh pressed herbs), an unexpectedly delightful wine list and a diverse small and large plates menu. The small but chic third floor lounge may lure you in but the farm to table ingredients, locally harvested shellfish, and classic fare alongside rethought standards will bring you back.

The Mooring A staple on the waterfront, The offers fresh seafood in a casually sophisticated setting. All-stars include the award-winning native scallop chowder and the signature “bag of donuts,” a serving of lightly fried lobster, crab and shrimp fritters with chipotle-maple aioli.

The Wharf Pub Longtime visitors to Newport might recognize the name, but this restaurant on Bannister’s Wharf has a new owner, new menu, and new look. The menu’s creative take on classic pub food includes artisanal pizzas, BBQ pork shoulder mac n’ cheese, four varieties of tater tots served in an iron skillet, fried chicken and waffles and more, plus a raw bar featuring Matunuck Oysters

Alex and Ani Hip jewelry featuring precious metal pieces at every price point—a favorite of celebutants.

Bellevue Beauty Walk Beauty brands, gifts, jewelry—a beautiful girly shop.
Chace ‘n’ Lulu Dresses, tops, skirts, denim, accessories—a pretty palette with smaller lines and a few hot shots including Kate Spade, BCBG and Susana Monaco.

Bannister’s Wharf Guest Rooms What they lack in ambiance they make up for in views. It’s true these simple are decidedly plain but are located directly on the wharf right atop The Coffee Grinder and bustling shops.

Pelham Court Hotel Located directly across from Bowen’s & Bannister’s Wharves, Pelham Court is housed in a renovated (and much expanded) service station, but you’d never know. Baths are stocked with L’Occitane bath and body products and many suites have kitchens.

Newport, RI City Guidephoto courtesy of Discover Newport

Bellevue Avenue/Memorial Blvd. Area

Jo’s American Bistro This new addition boasts a locally-sourced, farm to table menu in a casual atmosphere with seating for 160 on two-levels, outdoor patio, dinner nightly, small plates, a late night menu and brunch served on Saturday and Sunday.

Katrina’s Bakery Fresh baked goods on famed Bellevue Avenue; can’t go wrong.

Pasta Beach Service can be slow but the freshly prepared Italian dishes, including wood fired pizza, crusty bread, fresh pastas and homemade sauces are worth the wait. Local’s secret: go for lunch when it’s less busy; same menu, less frenzy (the restaurant doesn’t take reservations).

The Apothecary A beauty outpost that is essentially a gal’s dream makeup counter: Bare Escentuals anchors the shop but Stila, Mario Badescu skin care and MD Skincare are at your fingertips, plus airbrush tanning, massage, waxing, facials, etc.

ArchBeauty Skin Care Salon You had us at Brow Bar. With a full menu of full-service treatments for men and women including facials, waxing, makeup applications, bridal parties and brow design/eyebrow shaping, it’s clear ArchBeauty focuses on skin care services and products to promote skin health. Retail lines include G.M. Collin, Stila, SkinCeuticals, Smashbox, and more.

Isoude The boutique studio of couture designer Kate Brierley featuring exquisite cocktail ensembles, formal gowns, skirts, tops and more.

The Linen Shop A staple on posh Bellevue Avenue with luxurious bedding and bath linens, home accessories and ever-so-stunning window displays.

Laura Jean Denim A denim den for men and women carrying well known lines including Hudson, Joe’s, Paige, AG, Citizens of Humanity and more plus Luchesse and Frye boots.

Michael Hayes Duds for the discerning shopper. Gala gowns to day wear with upscale designers including Tory Burch, Sue Wong and Missoni.

Sara Campbell The eponymously named shop under the direction of the Boston-based designer offers crisp, classic silhouettes for fashionistas of all ages.

Sequin With two locations on Bellevue avenue and a third on Lower Thames Street, Sequin ensures no girl has to go without bling. This New York-based jewelry studio designsband manufactures their own brand of affordable jewelry as well as private label collections for a variety of major retailers and fashion designers.

Rib & Rhein Manhattan chic meets St. Tropez boutique with two floors of clothing, shoes, accessories coffee table books, international pieces, glassware and things you never know you needed but must have.

Wag Nation Every dog has its day here with cashmere sweaters, foul weather gear, leashes and collars to suit any furry friend’s personality, top shelf pet food and treats, pillowy doggie beds—pawsitively precious.

Wish An upscale resale shop with big names and little hassle. Tory Burch, Chanel, Givenchy, Lilly Pulitzer–a treasure trove of fashionable finds.

Farmaesthetics Locally made, globally praised 100% natural handcrafted herbal skincare for face and body born from traditional herbal recipes by founder Brenda Brock’s “kitchen chemistry.”

The Chanler at Cliff Walk A luxurious seaside “mansion retreat” living up to its well-earned reputation. Also home to the highly-lauded Spiced Pear restaurant (but the best way to enjoy this locale might just be on The Veranda, where you and wine and dine in the salty ocean air.

Hotel Viking Since 1926, the Viking has been considered “the” place to stay in Newport, which is why the Kennedys, members of the Vanderbilt family, famed musicians and Hollywood hotshots have stayed at the historic hotel on the hill (or perhaps it’s the traditional English afternoon tea and rooftop bar).

 

SEE/SAIL/CELEBRATE

Cliff Walk A 3.5-mile walk, some paved, some rougher terrain, along the coastline. By far one of the must-dos in Newport, and a great vantage point to see the mansions.

Newport Mansions The Gilded Age elite with names like Vanderbilt and Astor made Newport their playground and built their seasonal “cottages” that today lure millions to Newport. Owned and operated by the Preservation Society of Newport County, seeing one or two in a visit (definitely The Breakers) will leave you looking forward to more.

Newport Art Museum Home to the oldest art association in the country, this National Historic Landmark keeps things interesting with painting, photography, sculpture and mixed media exhibits in addition to their permanent collection.

Aquidneck Lobster Company At the end of Bowen’s Wharf, see where the day’s catch is off loaded and pick out a lobster to bring home for dinner. Go a little further and you’ll be in the Aquidneck Lobster Bar for some good casual eats—fresh off the boat.

Ocean Drive Just as it sounds, this 10-mile winding road traces the coast and weaves through some of the most stunning views (and addresses) in Newport.

Rough Point One of the many homes of “the richest little girl in the world,” billionairess Doris Duke summered at this jaw-dropping estate for much of her adult life. A gallery inside the home brings exhibits including an intimate peek at everything from her haute couture collections to fine furnishings.

The Redwood Library and Athenæum is the oldest lending library in America, and the oldest library building in continuous use in the country. More than just a sanctum of literature, the library is alive with bibliophiles and the casual readers alike.

The Jane Pickens Theater What started out as a church in 1834 is today a single-screen theater and event center showing everything from major motion pictures to less-known independents resplendent with century old detailing and gourmet concessions (cappuccino, cabernet or chocolate, anyone?)

The International Tennis Hall of Fame At the 1880 Newport Casino, the museum’s galleries chronicle the history of tennis exhibits, video, and classic memorabilia from historic champions and today.

Saint Mary’s Church Best known for setting the social columns aflutter when on Sept. 12, 1953 wedding of Newport summer resident Jacqueline Bouvier to the junior senator from neighboring Massachusetts, John Fitzgerald Kennedy.

Newport, RI City Guide

Vineyards Coastal temperatures yield savory grapes in this region and thus, three vineyards in the area: Newport Vineyards, Greenval Vineyards and Carolyn’s Sakonnet Vineyards in bucolic Little Compton.

Touro Synagogue A Newport landmark since 1763, Touro is the nation’s oldest synagogue building and played a vital role during the American Revolution.

12 Meter Charters and America’s Cup Charters Sail aboard one of the legendary America’s Cup yachts in this prestigious fleet (the contenders aren’t too shabby either). Raise a sail, grind a winch or simply sit back and let the crew do it all for you.

Rum Runner Built in 1929 during the height of Prohibition, the motor yacht was once once used to smuggle cases of scotch and whisky but today leisurely cruises Newport Harbor for the best views of the city.

Madeleine Sail through Newport Harbor at sunset on Narragansett Bay aboard the classic sailing yacht Madeleine, a 72-foot schooner. The ship maintains 19th century sailboat style with 21st century sailing yacht comfort and convenience—ideal for champagne sipping.

Newport Folk Festival Bob Dylan, Joan Baez, Johnny Cash, Pete Seeger and in more recent years, the Cowboy Junkies, Emmylou Harris, Jimmy Buffett, The Black Crowes, The Lumineers and Avett Brothers have added this defining festival to their resume. Traditionally held the last weekend of July at Fort Adams State Park overlooking Newport Harbor.

Newport Jazz Festival Duke Ellington, Dave Brubeck, Miles Davis, Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday, Ray Charles, Roberta Flack, Herbie Hancock, Frank Sinatra, even rock groups Led Zepplin and The Allman Brothers have graced the stage thanks in part to festival founder and organizer since 1954, George Wein.

Great Chowder Cook-Off “Chowda” is taken seriously in these parts, which is why chefs from around the country (even an international entry or two) look to earn their stripes, and crowd loyalty, in this traditional chowder competition.

newportFILM Documentaries and shorts in unique locales that look to inspire, motivate, entertain and create change.

Newport International Boat Show Four days and fifteen acres of more than 750 new powerboats and sailboats create this largest in-water boat show in the northeast (fourth largest in the country).

Newport Mansions Wine and Food Festival A weekend for epicureans and oenophiles with events and tastings at some of the most spectacular milieus in the city.

Christmas in Newport A month-long celebration of all things Christmas with everything from a traditional plum pudding stir to Santa’s arrival by boat to performances of the Nutcracker at a mansion to rides aboard the Polar Express. Events, including lantern tours, tree lightings, and concerts, appeal to adults, children and everyone in between.

International Oktoberfest Biergartens, bratwurst, and Bavarian music are the staples of this festive weekend. Take in two stages with live music, international food (including a visit from the world’s largest grill cooking up many things that end in –wurst), plenty of beers and the ubiquitous yodeling competition.

Newport Flower Show Set in early summer at Rosecliff, see horticultural specimens and floral designs, special garden exhibitions, take in lectures and demonstrations, and shop the Oceanside Marketplace.

Sunset Music Series Held throughout the summer under the waterfront tent with nationally-acclaimed artists playing a variety of music.

Former Newporter

I recently moved away from Newport – it really is a BEAUTIFUL place. I worked with Inns and can say that Pearls is GORGEOUS. The location is wonderful and the accommodations are comfortably luxurious. I would stay away from the Inns on Bellevue, though. A bad, bad experience for me.

A Juniperativo is the first and only cocktail you will need to know at Fluke. Tofu Pad Thai at Salvation Cafe resurfaces often in this vegan’s dreams. Empire Tea and Coffee IS the best coffee on the island – and Steve’s friendly smile will light up your day. Feel like dressing snazzy and going dancing? Studio 3 is the ONLY place to go. There’s a cover, but its totally worth it.

And finally, the one place I wish I could have picked up and taken with me: Pour Judgement. The food is not your typical pub fare (although they have a killer burger and beer special for $7) with entrees such as grilled salmon over a seaweed salad and black bean burgers with guacamole, the atmosphere is laid back, and in the Newport tradition the party happens every night.

Can you tell I loved it there?

Rebekah Coleman-Brahler

I’ve been going to RI since I was a little girl, mainly to Watch Hill, but also to Newport. It’s one of my favorite places to visit. The clam chowder at Cooke House is simply the BEST!!!

Jaime

I love Newport- went several for work this summer…once for the Wine + Food Festival which was amazing! One of my fave stores there is Mandarine boutique.

olivia

Oh no! was just there for the first time this summer and this guide would have come in handy! Oh well. I wholeheartedly concur with Lucia italian restaurant being superb – best ravioli i’ve ever tasted. and as for the mansions, we skipped the super expensive Breakers and visited Marble House instead which was awe-inspiring. We stayed at a B&B called the Inn at Villalon which was one of the cheapest we could find and it was exquisite for the price. Newport is a lovely place to visit.

jaclyn

As a Native and current Newporter –

I third Puerini’s – an institution! And I can’t believe that Pronto didn’t make it to the list!

Cutest restaurant ever! You feel like you’ve transported into a little french bistro mixed with a bustling Italian ristorante.
http://www.prontonewport.com

Natalia

I fourth Puerini’s. I haven’t found an Italian restaurants in NYC that compares for the price ( and i take my pasta very seriously.)

And the best chowder is at Coddington brew pub in Middletown.

Samantha

Beaches?

As a native newporter, I know that they are one of the best attractions in town. At the end of cliff walk is “1st” beach, which is usually crowded, as is second a little further, but what about the little inlets around the ocean drive, and 3rd beach for some relaxing seclusion from the busy “newport” life?

Pour judgment is by far the best bar in the city!

Also the farmer’s market on Wednesdays ( on memorial boulevard) should be visited for a real taste of local love.

court.

So nice to see my hometown on the map. Makes me miss home all the way down here in FL.

In terms of comfort food, the “Oriental Spaghetti” at Salas’ is a must. I grew up going to the Brick Alley Pub and splitting a plate of their famous nachos with my best girlfriends-a tradition that has followed us from our teens on.

In terms of fine dining, please check out the Rhumbline, which is located off America’s Cup Ave near the Visitors’ Center. The brunch there is amazing and is quaintly set in an old home.

Great job.

kellie

Love Newport! Ventured there lots when my husband and I lived in Providence. As far as the Limestone, ME blurp – I had to giggle – I live 1 hour north from there! Oh yes – we had to drive 8 hrs from RI during holidays…it took us 14 hours through a snow storm once -ugh… as you know we lose the highway waaaaaay back! ;)

Kate

So nice to read this posting today! I grew up in Newport and am living in NYC now. I definitely reccomend Mandarine Boutique, and venturing out of Newport to go 2nd Beach in Middletown. Also if you have a car- take a side trip to Little Compton and Sakonnett Point…breathtaking.

Kim O'Brien

I just needed to add a restaurant and clothing store both are related to my “night before” dinner. Mamma Luisa’s on Thames street. Located in a lovely Victorian with all floors and rooms being utilized for your dining pleasure is always a tasty experience. Their specialty is Northern Italian food and you can’t do without starting with one of their vegan soups. A new one each day and they are all delicious. For clothes, I love Tropical Gangsters also on Thames. A lovely boutique for women, with a blend of styles. This is where I bought my “Night Before” attire to wear to Mamma Luisa’s.

Alicia

Love these city guides! Grace, any chance there’s a Charleston guide in the works?

grace

alicia

i had someone write in to offer to make one and then she never wrote back :( will put out some more feelers…

grace

Emily Kate

WOW – Christie’s looks so different! No more of that dark, heavy wood anywhere. I’m glad they kept the name though, because that’s where my hubby and I fell in love back in college!

Oh and I second the motion about the beaches. 3rd is great for chilling out, but 1st and 2nd are good for people watching!

julia

oh dear! dont forget del’s lemonade and yesterday’s! hmm and cadeaux du monde as well.

also, rent a bike, take the bus, or walk if you can, because too many cars on the small streets and one-ways can make for slow, unpleasant driving! especially down bellevue! you’ll enjoy the view much better this way! (i used to work at the breakers, can you tell?)

jen

We were married at the end of 3rd beach, which is the Sachuest Point National Wildlife Refuge. So beautiful. Also recommend visiting Norman Bird Sanctuary, along the same point. Technically, it’s Middletown but a short drive from Flo’s Clam Shack.

Rachel

My family lives in Newport, I spent every summer there growing up, and my parents have retired there. This guide is a great, comprehensive map – though of course I have a few favorites to add. Most important though is the wonderful feel of Newport: walking across old cobblestone streets, admiring the town’s extraordinary array of ancient – and enormous – Copper Beach trees, wandering through the narrow streets and looking at the pre-Colonial houses (which are particularly impressive when concentrated without interruption by modern design), or driving along the stunningly beautiful Ocean Drive.
Along with the gorgeous – though depressingly RV filled local Middletown beaches, visitors should walk through Sachuest Wildlife park – a ocean promontory in Middletown, visit the Norman Bird Sanctuary & hike its trails, as well as tour the fabulously eccentric and magical Green Animals in Portsmouth. Trinity Church – in Queen Anne’s Square – also deserves a visit: it is beautiful and historically a very important piece of pre-colonial architecture.
In terms of local food for simple fare, great ice cream made locally and the best frappes go to The Newport Creamery – not fancy but fresh & reliable. Fore fine dining, Bouchard -with its French-trained chef owner – is simply head and shoulders above the others, though it doesn’t have the ambiance and bustle of Clark Cookhouse. For the best food, go to Tucker’s Bistro – don’t be put off by the ummm eclectic interior design – mad queen meets antiques hoarder – the food is the best in town. And sorry to be the lone dissenter, but I loathe Puerini’s – gummy pasta, overdressed salads, heavily sauced and breaded entrees: for great Italian food go to Providence!

Monica

can any comment on what it’s like living in Newport year round? do i need to be rich to survive there? And being a “resort town,” is it dead in the off season?

Former Newporter

Its totally affordable to live the Newport life year ’round! You’ll meet so many people, eat great food, and see the best parts of the town without ALL THE TOURISTS. Off season definitely slows down but when the season is over, if you’ve experienced a full summer of it, you WILL be happy for the slower pace.

Forgot to mention before and I can’t believe I did, but if you go into the Newport Wine Cellar on a regular basis you will meet Maria and David. They are the coolest people ever and their store is amazing! They have tastings every Friday and Saturday. Can’t find a bad bottle in the place, super low key (read: unpretentious), and they have everything from the wonderfully affordable to the decadently high-end. Love them. Miss them.

http://newportwinecellar.com/

DesignLover

I just wanted to say that the picture for this article is the Newport Beach Hotel & Suites, which is most unfortunately left off of the list of recommended hotels. I travel to Newport regularly and have stayed at this property many times. I consider it to be the best hotel in Newport (actually just over the Newport border in Middletown). They opened a second building last summer that is all suites, and added an indoor pool/hottub and a rooftop hot tub and firepit. This hotel has some of the better values in Newport and definitely the most modern updated rooms.

http://www.newportbeachhotelandsuites.com

Esther

we lived in newport for almost three years with little kids. the summer is as they say “nevah beddah!” in newport. winters are pretty nasty but just bundle up. our most favorite beach was gooseberry beach off of ocean drive. breakfast is king in newport – atlantic grille or ocean breeze cafe off of thames are the best. our most favorite date nights were spent at norey’s on broadway. the chef is incredible – he’ll come out and recommend beer pairings with his fare. (his beer selection is like a boutique). scallops and his fresh humus are to die for! we also loved the blueberry ale at coddington’s. pronto was fantastic and mama lucia’s has the most amazing butternut squash ravioli. walking downtown and to the beaches is one of the most charming parts of newport life. summer crowds can be avoided – just ask the locals for the way around town. the farmer’s market is fantastic. resterantuer’s around town make a point to offer farm fresh to the table fare. katrina’s bakery is a special place right before church. speaking of churches: we loved ours – evangelical friends church on bliss mine road. ps the parks in newport are fantastic for kids – morton park is our favorite as well as the park by the newport library. brick alley is comfort food and yesterday’s has awesome sweet potato fries – but you have to request them. make sure you get an aweful, aweful at the newport creamery after the beach! newport is a special place. check out ma’s donuts for good ice coffees drive-in style.

Alice Donovan

If you are in town on a Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday and are looking for an affordable Italian meal you should try Sardellas on Memorial Drive. They have a deal, two entrees and a bottle of wine for $24 (and a live jazz band on Wednesdays)

Great place to go out an eat if you are looking to save your money for the after dinner bar scene!

Vikki

Fluke is absolutely perfect! I’ve been there on two trips since finding the recommendation here last year and I’ve been so impressed both times. The menu is packed with delicious, creative options, and the waitstaff is so helpful and sincerely friendly.

Emmy

Just on the off chance that any Newport locals look at this again and can help me out, I am trying to figure out the name of a fantastic little French sandwich and coffee place I went to last September. It was definitely in the area bordered by Memorial to the south, Marlborough/Broadway to the north, and Kay/Bellevue to the east. It may have even been right on Broadway. I can’t for the life of me figure out what the place was called, but it’s quite small with a very low ceiling, barely any tables, and run by this friendly husband and wife (the wife is from Paris I believe). I had the BEST SANDWICH OF MY LIFE there (julienned ham, melted gruyere and carmelized onions, among other ingredients). Since I’m moving to Providence this fall and plan on visiting Newport often, I really want to figure out what this place was. Any ideas?? Thanks so much, everyone!

Emmy

Nevermind, I figured it out! No wonder it was so hard to find, they don’t even have a website and don’t show up on Google Maps. The place is called:

ROSEMARY & THYME BOULANGERIE and CAFE

and its address is:
383 Spring St.
Newport

Best pastries and sandwiches ever.

Danielle

A few additional notes about Empire Tea & Coffee: If you make your way there (and you should), don’t skip the baked goods. The scones are unreal, and the chocolate chunk cookie is the best cookie I’ve ever had. They also have board games and *plenty* of seating.

Danielle

Also, I second the Rosemary & Thyme endorsement. For you San Franciscans, their small selection of baked goods rivals those of Tartine. I think there are only two (three?) tables, so plan to take your goods to the park just in case.

jackiehennesse1

Your post is something I will save and savor for years to come because we go to Newport a few times a year. Sometimes with our kids, and other times on our own to celebrate an anniversary or just to relax! Almost every visit, we go to the Cooke House. I absolutely love that restaurant, but I think it’s fun to mix it up a bit! Thanks so much for this fabulous piece, Andrea.

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