The Preservation Society of Newport County protects and showcases Newport's one-of-a-kind architectural heritage. During tours of Newport's museum-houses, visitors get a glimpse into three centuries of American history, from the French Baroque styling of Rosecliff, high-Victorian splendor and fancy French name of Chateau-sur-mer. Tourists can trace the steps of some of America's most wealthy families as they explore latter-day castles such as Cornelius Vanderbilt II's The Breakers or the Isaac Bell House. Special events give guests a hands-on insight to the everyday people that worked in New England's most famous mansions, while annual occasions such as the Newport Flower show celebrate the treasured traditions and landscapes of Newport each year.
Now in its 20th season, the Newport International Polo Series draws top teams from around the world to compete in Olympic-caliber matches. The opening round of the New England Challenge, to be hosted on the historic Glen Farm polo grounds in Portsmouth, pits Newport against regional rivals in a test of riding skill, ball-maneuvering dexterity, and saddle-bedazzling artistry. The thunder of hooves and the thwack of mallets fuel the adrenaline-pumping excitement, and the sight of dapper players astride their well-groomed mounts lends each earth-churning play a sense of gentlemanly ferocity. A trophy presentation follows the two-hour match, as well as the awarding of a weekly door prize for the fan dubbed most Seabiscuit-like.
The Coastal Wine Trail draws together a variety of coastal producers, whose vines speckle hillsides along the southern coasts of Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut: Truro Vineyards, Travessia Winery, Coastal Vineyards, Running Brook Winery, Westport Rivers Vineyard & Winery, Carolyn's Sakonnet Vineyard, Greenvale Vineyards, Newport Vineyards, Langworthy Farm Winery, and Stonington Vineyards. A passport grants visitors passage for 2 to 10 wineries, where they may learn about and perhaps purchase each producer's favored libations?mostly whites and sparkling wines but a few reds?which are characterized by their growing proximity to the coastline and the dual-climatic influences of Gulf Stream waters and the screams of passing water-skiers.
The chefs at Portsmouth Publick House put their own twist on classics. They douse the bison burger with mango chutney; pair lobster with a croissant; and stuff quesadillas with marinated shrimp, fresh cilantro, and jalapenos. The rest of the menu, including piping-hot pizzas and soup, refuels patrons during contests and other forms of entertainment. On Thursday nights, guests put their heads together over trivia questions. Saturdays feature live music from 7?9 p.m., and $1 Raw Bar is an everyday occasion.
Located a short 25-minute drive or two-hour gallop from Providence, Anne Benson Stables turns ordinary ambulators into accomplished equestrians ready to safely operate a modern horse. Private lessons—which are ideal for riders 7 years and older who need time to develop skills before riding into any sunsets—build horse masters from the ground up, laying brick after brick of essential skills backed by positive reinforcement. Equine enthusiasts of all levels of expertise can develop their riding skills in styles such as English saddle seat, hunt seat, equitation, or driving under the personal eye of experienced riders whose first rocking horses were actual horses.