Articles and news about Newport's grandest homes.

 Presenting the Carriage House of Belmead Mansion, this historic "shingle style" property features a main residence plus 2 apartments, artist's loft, greenhouse studio, screen porch, garage and ample on-site parking. All within walking distance to the Cliff Walk and Bailey's Beach.

This represents one of the last remaining chances to renovate and revitalize a Newport carriage house from the Gilded Age. Take a walk or a drive and look around the city, you will find numerous examples of some of the amazing work that has been done to re-purpose these magnificent structures.

There is over 6,000 square feet of to have some fun. Let your imagination run wild. Grab your architect, your interior designer, your contractor and oh yes your checkbook. Have…

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Astor's Beechwood renovationRestoration of Astor's Beechwood underway 12/30/12

on Bellevue Avenue, Newport, RI

Yesterday, while cruising down Newport's Bellevue Avenue, I glanced over at Astors' Beechwood and, much to my surprise, it wasn't there!  After a quick double take I realized the big, beige Italiante mansion WAS in fact there, but it was no longer the cream-colored wedding-cake-of-a-house I remembered, but rather a somber red brick edifice with pale quoining along the corners and roof line.

It's a temporary look, as plans call for the reapplication of the stucco, but the mansion's current "nakedness" combined with the wintery, leafless landscape accentuates the dignity of the original architecture.

Astors' Beechwood is undergoing a complete restoration thanks…

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Hopedene Newport RIHopedene, Newport, RI, sold $16M 12/19/12

It was another stellar day for Newport, RI luxury real estate as word spread that Gustave White Sotheby's brokered the sale of Hopedene for $16M. The sale was Rhode Island's highest recorded sale this year and the second highest ever. 

Located on Cliff Avenue with a sweeping lawn and stunning views of First Beach and the Atlantic, Hopedene was designed by Peabody and Stearns and completed in 1902 for Elizabeth Hope Gammell Slater.

Interior designer Ogden Codman, Jr. built an addition in 1913 and redesigned the Georgian Revival mansion when Charles P. Patterson, a NY antiques dealer purchased the home.

When he died, Mr. Patterson left Hopedene to Newport's Preservation Society and in 1983 Britty Cudlip…

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The intricate ins and outs of Newport’s streets are typically explored by those who have exhausted the main street attractions. Once you are numb to the typical sights you begin to crave more, and Newport has much much more to see. In grade school my friends and I wandered around town looking for things to do. In doing so we discovered many hidden spots with amazing views of Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island Sound and the Atlantic Ocean. I now love taking friends to these spots to show them Newport’s beauty the way I grew up seeing it. These are my top spots in Newport RI to enjoy the waterfront:

The Point: The Point is at the end of the downtown area just before the bridge to Goat Island. This historic part of Newport right by the Newport Bridge has…

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I married into a family of native Newporters descended from the European immigrants who worked in Newport's mansions.  As I result, I have heard many amazing stories about Newport's gilded age families.  Among my favorites are my husband Paul's recollections of Elizabeth Parke Firestone and his visits to her Newport, RI Firestone Estate, Ocean Lawn. 

After her husband died, Mrs. Firestone (a.k.a Betty) summered alone at Ocean Lawn, a sprawling 1888 Peabody & Stearns mansion overlooking the water on the corner of Narragansett Avenue and Cliff Walk. She was the widow of the late Harvey Firestone, Jr., son of the founder of Firestone Tire. 

In those days, Mrs. Firestone didn't get out much, but she enjoyed a little sherry and conversation with…

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A Cautionary Tale: Don't bring the horse in the house.

Like many historic towns, Newport, RI has a rich oral history. My father in law, the late John Hogan, was a great story teller.  In addition to being a life long Newporter, he worked for many years as a docent in the mansions. Tales about Newport families - wealthy ones and everyday people - would just spill out of him whenever we visited. I wish he had been a blogger because many of those stories will be lost over time. Here's one of his more memorable urban legends:

Sometime in the last mid-century, a family lived in a big, beautiful house on Old Beach Road in the Kay Catherine section of Newport.  They had a barn out back where the family horse resided.  One exceptionally cold Christmas Eve,…

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  wicker doll carriageAn Elegant Hand-Me-Down from Newport, RI's Gilded Age

Tucked away in one of my closets is an antique wicker doll carriage abandned many years ago by my now grown-up daughters.  My mother-in-law, the late Dorothy Hogan, gave us the carriage when our daughter, Casey, was born. Casey was the first girl in two generations of Hogans, and Dorothy saved that carriage hoping someday she'd have a granddaughter to enjoy it. The fabric is worn and frayed, but the metal wheels and hinges still operate smoothly after all these years.

It was an expensive toy, elegant and built to last. In the early 1900s it belonged to a little girl who summered in a Newport "Cottage" off Ocean Drive. Sometime in the 1930s it was given to Dorothy's mother, Ethel Rabatin, a…

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Mae West once said, "You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough."

As a luxury waterfront rental specialist in Newport, RI, helping folks "do it right" is my profession. Lucky me - especially at this time of year when Rhode Island summer rental activity begins to heat up. If you're looking for a cool place to spend your vacation this summer, I have lots of ideas in all price ranges, but here are a few of the more unusual offerings:

Nantucket Light ShipThe Nantucket Lightship

The Nantucket Light Ship, Newport RI

Just imagine yourself on the deck of this amazing vessel sipping Champagne while the setting sun paints the harbor an indescribable shade of pink. The lights on the bridge are twinkling, the temperature's about 75, and mmm, mmmm, mmmm, life is…

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