With its sweeping views of the Atlantic, majestic mansions and all the seaside charm of classic New England, Newport offers couples the chance to turn their wedding into a full weekend of celebrations. Whether couples are looking for a laid-back wedding on the beach or a formal affair fit for royalty, Newport has it all, and then some.
For those who want to have their feet firmly planted in the sand on the big day, Easton’s Beach offers the option to get married just steps from the ocean. For a grand affair, the ambiance of Rosecliff Mansion is unmatched, and those seeking a stunning view of the Newport Bridge and Narragansett Bay can opt to get married on Goat Island at Belle Mer, Hyatt Regency or Regatta Place. For the ultimate nautical feel, the Newport Yachting Center in the heart of downtown is also available for dockside “I do’s.”
“From Gilded Age mansions to glamorous seaside ballrooms to vineyards with rustic charm, Newport County has something for each and every couple’s palette,” says Rebecca Miller, wedding specialist at Discover Newport.
Many couples planning a wedding in Newport like to make it a mini-vacation for their guests and get them truly immersed in the area’s many attractions and events.
Kristin Love, founder and creative director of Details With Love, a full-service wedding and event planning studio, encourages guests to take advantage of the happenings around town during their stay. With the Newport Folk and Jazz Festivals, many boat shows and other events in town almost every weekend, guests will find ample opportunity to join in on the excitement and experience Newport to the fullest.
“One of the best things about Newport is the opportunity to explore and enjoy everything that it has to offer,” says Kristin. “Most guests leave saying they can’t wait to come back!”
A full wedding weekend in Newport could include a sunset sail aboard a classic America’s Cup 12-Meter yacht, a clambake welcome dinner, a post-wedding backyard brunch, a tour of historic Fort Adams or a stroll along the Cliff Walk.
The long list of things for guests to see and do also includes a cruise down Ocean Drive, a hike at the Norman Bird Sanctuary and relaxing at one of the many nearby beaches. For history buffs, Newport offers a glimpse back in time with tours of the Vanderbilt family summer “cottages,” including The Breakers and Marble House.
Based on a blend of farm-fresh and coastal ingredients, Newport’s local cuisine is top-notch. Couples can choose to serve entirely local cuisine and cocktails, with guests dining on fresh-caught seafood and locally grown produce, local brewed beers, such as Newport Storm, and wines from Newport, Greenvale or Carolyn’s Sakonnet Vineyards.
There is no shortage of places to stay in Newport and the many bed and breakfasts in town offer the option of private accommodations for entire wedding parties. These inns range from quaint to luxurious and are mostly within walking distance of town, making getting around hassle-free.
While planning a wedding from afar might sound challenging, Newport has some great resources to help with every aspect. Kristin, for instance, is a Newport native who works closely with couples to give them piece of mind and streamlines the planning process. “From beginning to end, we can plan it all,” she says.
If a coastal location with plenty of restaurants, beaches, boats and charm is what you’re seeking, Newport is a great place to find it all on one beautiful island.
Photo Credit (top to botton): 12 Meter Charters, Discover Newport, Newport Vineyards, Bill Black, Discover Newport
Note: This article originally appeared in the 2014/2015 Southern New England Weddings: Destination Edition