I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve been very heavy in my last few posts. I’ve been going through a lot and I have to say thank you to those of you who have commented or reached out in support. It truly means a lot.
In order to try and rebalance, which is kind of what this trip was for me, there’s a look at my recent trip to the Newport Mansions.
On Monday, I was a sobbing mess. I had an incredibly painful headache and was feeling completely heartbroken. The last thing that I wanted to do was spend a whole day alone at home. I had been promising myself all summer that on my Mondays off, I was going to do something. Cook, go on adventures, anything. I hadn’t really done that. So, going anywhere for the day seemed like a good thing to do. I just needed to get my mind away from home and life. I decided to drive five hours round trip to Newport, Rhode Island and explore the mansions as much as I could.
For $35 you can tour five of any of the numerous mansions that are a part of the Preservation Society of Newport. That totals $7 per house which is a pretty good deal. I ended up making it to only four houses since I arrived in Newport a bit later than I had planned.
Being fully caffeinated, I start my day at The Breakers.
This was the former summer “cottage” of Cornelius Vanderbilt and was considered the grandest if the Newport mansions.
Personally, this has always been one of my favorite houses. You could definitely feel like a modern princess in there!
My next stop was The Elms. This Parisian inspired home was the former summer residence of Mr. and Mrs. Edward Julius Berwind.
One of the cool additions to The Elms while I was there was Elizabeth Colomba’s Four Seasons. The four portraits in the above image are not contemporary to the house and are on display as a special exhibition until October 14, 2018. Painted between 2012 and 2018, the portraits show the seasons depreciated as an “allegory of womanhood”, according to the Preservation Society. They seem to fit in perfectly with the surrounding grandeur of the room yet upon further inspection clearly do not fit in. They’re simply gorgeous.
My next stop was Rosecliff.
Formerly owned by Theresa Fair Oelrichs, Rosecliff was inspired by the Grand Trianon at Versailles. To be honest, this was the house that disappointed me the most. There wasn’t a whole lot to see and a few rooms have been converted into bridal meeting rooms for wedding planners on the property. The view of the ocean was even blocked due to a tent set up for a special event taking place later that day or in the week. Overall, not my favorite stop.
My last house of the day was Marble House
This is the home that reminds me the most of a European palace, and for good reason. This was the “cottage” of Mr. and Mrs. William K. Vanderbilt. Their daughter, Consuelo, would go on to become the 9th duchess of Marlborough and, if you watch Smithsonian channel, an American Princess. Marble House is made of 500,000 cubic feet of marble and acts as a shrine to the arts.
Just walking through the house makes you scratch your head and wonder how this was ever just a “beach house”. It is truly a palace on the shore.
Walking through the homes and around the grounds of each house, I was taken away from everything I was going through for a few hours. There’s always something nice about stepping back in time like this. At the same time, I felt like my mind was at war with itself. I was empowered, in a way, for going on this trip alone but also felt incredibly lonely. It’s hard to transition back into taking trips on my own.
Where do you like to go to unwind alone?