In the late 1800’s and early 1900’s, Newport, Rhode Island was home to the rich and famous during the summertime. When most people with summer homes these days have modest little houses, the rich and famous had mansions for their summer “cottages”.
Take “The Breakers” for example. This summer “cottage” is a whopping 138,300 square feet and has 70 rooms! These aren’t just ordinary rooms either. One of the rooms in The Breakers has ornate wall panels where all of the silver-colored design is made of platinum! How’s that for over-the- top opulence?
Today, we toured “The Elms” and “The Breakers” and walked the ‘hood to see how the one percent’rs lived over 100 years ago. Although the area was gorgeous and the mansions picturesque, what we saw was ostentatious, to say the least. It was difficult at times to walk through the rooms of both mansions and realize the amount of money these people spent to show off their wealth, and keep up with the Joneses. I found myself thinking about how the money could have been used to make the world a better place instead.
Photography (even without flash) was strictly prohibited inside the homes, so the only pictures I was able to shoot were of the mansion exteriors and gardens.
The Breakers, built in 1895 was the summer “cottage” of the Vanderbilt family. It features a two-and-a-half story high Great Hall, and a Morning Room adorned with platinum leaf wall panels. Its interiors feature rare marble, alabaster, and gilded woods throughout.
Following our home tours, we took the “Cliff Walk” to enjoy the fresh sea air, enjoy the views, and see more beautiful homes.
Our day concluded with a cruise along Ocean Avenue, a beautiful drive that follows the Newport coast. It was a gorgeous day, and we thoroughly enjoyed the miles we walked in one of the most beautiful neighborhoods in the world.