A travel journal
to Newport by Alyssa
Quote: Christmas with the Vanderbilts. What could be richer? It's the holiday season in Newport, Rhode Island, where such things are possible. At Christmas, the legendary mansions of Bellevue Avenue are decked out in elegant holiday splendor, and a calendar of special events extends through January 3.
At The Elms, where after-dinner gems used to be dispensed to the party guests, the season sparkles with "Joyeux Noel," and Gilded Age ornamentation patterned after the Great Houses of Europe. The famous garden is being renovated, but you can partake of the grand style that prevailed in Newport when the industrial barons ruled Newport society. Or visit Marble House, another Bellevue Avenue legend, for "A Belle Epoque Christmas." Tickets for The Elms or Marble House are .00.
From the waterfront and America's Cup Avenue, it's a short walk to the History Museum at the Brick Market on Thames Street, then to the historic district for the candlelight tour of 18th and 19th century private homes, December 26, 27 and 28, 4-7 p.m. Call (401) 848-7017 for details. Cost is .00 per house.
There's a Holiday Train Ride Dec. 27, 28 and 29, along scenic Naragansett Bay. Starts at 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. Adults .75. Children .25.
First Night in Newport is celebrated New Year's Eve, with venues and a fireworks display at 9:30 p.m. For Newport accommodations, call 1-800-326-6030. Christmas in Newport: (401) 849-6454.
Of course you can bring your car, but so does everyone else, so be prepared for traffic in high tourist season and most weekends. Local buses leave at frequent intervals from Gateway Center. The inter-city buses stop there, too.