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Gilded Ageless

JoAnn Greco | April 30, 2018 | Feature Features National

There's a lot that's new in Newport, R.I.—including a renovation of a storied Goat Island resort, opulent home-touring and the return of the world-class Volvo Ocean Race this May. However, this idyllic seaside retreat remains—thankfully—timeless.
An aerial view of Gurney's Newport Resort & Marina

In Newport, R.I., it seems even goats live the luxe life. When its two most famous ruminants, Cornelius and William (named for Vanderbilt scions), need to retreat from the cooing attention their presence generates, they shimmy into a pared down take on one of the not-so-simple “cottages” that grace this seaside haven—complete with a widow’s walk, a portico and arched windows.

Located on the grounds of the new Gurney’s Newport Resort & Marina (high-season suite rates from $389 per night), the animals’ enclosure nods to the fact that the 257-room property—a sister to the Montauk, N.Y., legend of the same name—is located on a 10-acre site on Goat Island (so-called because early colonists used it as a pasture for farm animals). After eating at the scrumptious on-site Scarpetta—a waterfront outpost of the iconic New York Italian restaurant—it’s a short walk or drive to the mainland. However, with a marina primed for top-notch sailing competition this spring, a coterie of shops and restaurants, a spa overlooking the bay, and expansive lawns that roll down to prime waterfront, the resort is a destination in itself.

Still, guests—or anyone who hasn’t been to the area in a while—would be remiss in not setting out to further explore this destination. Strolling through the jaunty jumble of tourist attractions that enliven the port is an exceedingly pleasant way to spend an afternoon—especially if you finish with a twilight sail. And, anyone interested in design, history or society (in all senses of the word) will want to devote hours (days!) to touring the extravagant mansions that cling to the cliffs overlooking the ocean.


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