From the Gilded Age to Today’s Gourmet Destination – Rhode Island

Above Photo Credit: Onne van der Wal

Packages Available: Spring, Summer, and Fall
Tour Length: 4 Days/3 Nights

Rhode Island is packed with 400 miles of coastline and 20 percent of the country’s historic landmarks.  Newport is the sailing capital of the world and home to the famed Gilded Age mansions. Providence’s celebrated restaurants, award-winning theatre and vibrant arts scene is enhanced by an elaborate river walk. Discover our country’s smallest state, the first of the 13 original colonies, and see why “The Ocean State” is a magnet for visitors wishing to experience natural beauty, walk in footsteps through history, shop in fabulous galleries and dine on amazingly fabulous cuisine.

Day One: 

Arrive in Providence mid-afternoon and meet your local guide for a guided tour of historic Providence. Learn of the rich and exciting history of this town as you pass the home of a signer of the Declaration of Independence, travel along the riverfront and waterfront, steer through Federal Hill-the historic Italian District, coast through the "Mile of History"-Benefit Street, motor around the Arts and Entertainment District, visit Roger Williams National Memorial Park and view the Stephen Hopkins House the oldest standing building in Providence.

Say goodbye to your guide and check into your stylish-downtown Providence hotel. There will be time to relax and refresh, take a swim in the indoor pool, have a snack at the the on-site Starbucks or sip a beverage in the lounge before dinner.

This evening, gather for an included dinner served at a unique restaurant where you watch the chefs prepare your meal right before your eyes. First, select your ingredients at the "marketplace." Then choose the spices and sauces to season your "marketplace" ingredients. Bring your ingredients to the chefs and watch as they prepare your dinner while you wait! Make certain to save room for dessert; an ice cream sundae bar.

Photo credit: Nicholas Millard

Photo credit: Nicholas Millard

After dinner, transport yourself to Venice, Italy. Board an authentic Venetian gondola and be steered along the Providence River Walk. Enjoy handmade, Italian-style wine biscuits while your gondolier entertains you with live music.

Return back to your hotel.

Day Two: 

After breakfast in the hotel, back your bags and checkout. Today, your travels will take you to the beautiful town of Newport. Before departing, visit the renowned Scialo Brothers Bakery. Learn how craftsmen of fine bread and pastries have made wonderful products since 1916. Sample delicious fresh baked treats and purchase some to enjoy during your trip.

Arrive in Newport and visit Green Animals. Embark on a self-guided tour of more than 80 pieces of topiary displayed throughout the gardens. Witness animals and birds, geometric figures and ornamental designs, sculpted from California privet, yew, and English boxwood.

 

Marble HouseBe amazed, when you visit the Marble House, built between 1888 and 1892 for Mr. and Mrs. William K. Vanderbilt.  It was a summer house, or "cottage", as Newporters called them in remembrance of the modest houses of the early 19th century. But Marble House was much more; it was a social and architectural landmark that set the pace for Newport's subsequent transformation from a quiet summer colony of wooden houses to the legendary resort of opulent stone palaces.

Enjoy lunch on your own at Bannister’s Wharf and explore the unique shops and galleries. The wharf that John Bannister built was the social and commercial lifeline to colonial Newport, the connector between an active harbor and an enterprising, young town. The history of Bannister’s Wharf has been an exciting one. It has been home and hostelry, a place to buy bread and a place to break bread. This is the place where people come to experience the ambiance that is expressly Newport.

Next, tour the grandest of Newport's summer "cottages", The Breakers. This mansion is a symbol of the Vanderbilt family's social and financial preeminence in turn of the century America. This 70-room Italian Renaissance-style palazzo was inspired by the 16th century palaces of Genoa and Turin.

vineyardTour the Newport Vineyards, followed by a chance to sit back and enjoy a sampling.

Check into your waterfront hotel in historical downtown Newport late afternoon. This historic hotel with sophisticated coastal ambiance and modern day amenities create a cozy retreat just steps away from the beach. There will be time to relax and refresh before dinner. 

Savor the flavors of Italian fare served in a casual but elegant local restaurant. Sardella's was voted the "best Italian restaurant" by Newport Life Magazine.

Day Three:

After breakfast in the hotel, meet your local guide, dressed in costume as Mrs. Caroline Astor, the Grande Dame of Newport and New York Society. Travel back to the Gilded Age and beyond to 1920. Travel along scenic Ocean Avenue, America's Cup Avenue, Thames Street, Wellington Avenue and on to Fort Adams. Learn of the region's rich history and a little "gossip" about Newport's elite residents!

Enjoy lunch on your own at a local eatery, then climb aboard for a cruise of historic Newport Harbor and Narragansett Bay. See close-up views of lighthouses, America's Cup Yachts, Grand Estates and more!

This afternoon, visit St. Mary's Church, Rhode Island's oldest Roman Catholic parish. This Gothic Revival Church, featuring magnificent stained glass windows that were craft in Austria, is recognized as one of the most beautiful churches in New England. It is also where President John F. Kennedy and Jacqueline Bouvier were wed!

Your Farewell Dinner this evening is served at a restaurant situated on the ground floor of the International Tennis Hall of Fame. Locally owned and operated for over thirty-five years, the restaurant's menu, style and friendly atmosphere reflect the family's Irish heritage.

Return back to your Newport hotel.

Day Four: 

Photo credit: Ian Iannuccilli

Photo credit: Ian Iannuccilli

Enjoy breakfast in the hotel, pack your bags and check out of the hotel. This morning visit Clouds Hill Victorian House Museum, known as Rhode Island's "hidden treasure." The house was built in 1871 and was a wedding gift for Elizabeth Ives Slater by her father William Reed a leading industrial textile businessman. Today, the house is owned and occupied by Elizabeth's great-granddaughter, Anne. Situated on 27 acres this large Gothic Revival structure is an example of high quality Victorian-era workmanship, including a distinctive Egyptian-themed room. One family member, Nancy Allen, was the first female fire chief in the world. On the property sits a tiny white shed that was once the headquarters for the Cedar Hill Volunteer Fire Company. Inside is the 1928 Dodge-Graham fire truck that Nancy built.

Enjoy an included lunch at a local eatery before departing for home.

Details

Packages Available: Spring, Summer, and Fall
Tour Length: 4 Days/3 Nights

Your Package Includes:

  • 3 Nights accommodation
  • 3 Breakfasts
  • 1 Lunch
  • 3 Dinners
  • Guided Tour of Providence
  • Gondola Ride along Providence's Riverwalk
  • Visit to Scialo Brother's Bakery
  • Admission to Green Animals Topiary
  • Admission to The Marble House
  • Time to explore Bannister's Wharf
  • Tour the Breakers Mansion
  • Tour and taste at Newport Vineyards
  • Mrs. Astor's guided tour of Newport
  • Visit to St. Mary's Church
  • Newport Harbor Cruise
  • Time to explore Clouds Hill Victorian House Museum
  • Roundtrip motor coach transportation upon arrival in Rhode Island
  • Accommodations, all group meals and baggage service for the coach driver
  • Taxes and Gratuities (NOTE: Gratuities for the coach driver are not included and is at your discretion based on service. Gratuities may be included upon request.)

Pricing Information:

  • Call for custom pricing.