Imagine being driven down a tree-lined boulevard in a horse drawn carriage to your reception at a stately waterfront mansion. Or picture a simple, yet elegant ceremony on the beach, followed by a classic New England-style clambake. No other place in New England combines historic attractions with a charming waterfront and spectacular natural beauty quite like Newport, RI – a city that has long been a premier wedding destination for native Rhode Islanders and people from all over the world.
“Newport is an ideal wedding destination because it offers the historic charm of the area that combines effortlessly with a classic elegance. Thinking of Newport automatically brings to mind images of the Great Gatsby and ocean views. There are so many different venues to choose from that a couple can really customize their wedding to suit any taste or style,” says Desiree Modano of Rentals Unlimited.
Perhaps you are a sophisticated couple dreaming of an elegant yet intimate wedding? Or maybe you are a chic, modern couple searching for a unique location and look that speaks to your personalities? No matter what your tastes, Newport has something to offer everyone from its historic churches and first-rate reception venues to its waterfront restaurants and hotels. “Whether you are looking for a waterfront pavilion, a Gilded Age mansion, a stunning ballroom, or luxury yacht reception,” says Rebecca Miller, wedding specialist at Discover Newport, “there is one for each and every palette and budget.”
If you’re interested in the splendor of a Bellevue mansion, there’s no better place than Rosecliff, a snow-white dwelling with classic lines featuring the largest ballroom in Newport, and a heart-shaped staircase – you can even have your rehearsal dinner at the Marble Tea House.
If you are looking for a more laid-back, casual, beach wedding, the Rotunda at Easton’s Beach may meet your needs. The Cliff Walk, along the eastern shore of Newport, offers a stunning backdrop for any outdoor wedding. The world-famous, public access walk combines the natural beauty of the Newport shoreline with the architectural history of the Bellevue favorites.
Couples that choose Newport as their wedding locale are about fun, elegance and spending quality time with friends and family. Newport brides and grooms are hosting more of a mini getaway for all of the guests that on average lasts about three days. After the rehearsal, imagine kicking off the weekend’s festivities with a sunset sail around Narragansett Bay aboard a 12-meter yacht.
“Newport couples that classic New England charm with a certain sophistication that makes for a perfect wedding destination. Whether you are looking for something laid-back and beachy, or high-end elegance and glamour – there is a perfect wedding location for every style. It is also a bonus that there are many vendors in the area known for their event expertise who can each help turn your big day into the day of your dreams,” adds Modano.
If you want to learn about one of America’s most historic cities while you are here, there are dozens of fun but informative walking tours, trolley tours, museum tours and boating cruises; all giving you a glimpse into Newport’s rich history including our Colonial past and Gilded Age splendor. Even strolling the cobblestone streets throughout Newport can feel like stepping back in time, says Miller. She adds, “Discover Newport can help any bride and groom find a venue, provide travel guides and city maps and even help you with marriage license information.”
**This article was printed in the 2012-2013 Southern New England Weddings Destination Edition.