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Trip Report Newport RI November 2008

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Nov 20th, 2008, 05:51 PM
  #1
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Trip Report Newport RI November 2008

A brief trip report...

Last weekend, ten adults and five children descended upon Newport, RI for our annual family weekend.

DH and I arrived and went straight to the Brick Alley Pub; we chose it because I thought I remembered a good recommendation from a fodorite, and because there was a parking spot right out front I had a very good caprese sandwich and DH had what he says was probably the best fish and chips he's ever had, and a very tasty bloody mary.

Fortified, we met the crowd at the Wellington Resort. It is a combination of suites and hotel rooms. We all had suites. Decor was a bit dated, but generally they were quite clean, very roomy and quite comfortable (and I am very picky). There was a nice indoor heated pool that the kids enjoyed. We had views of the harbor, which was very nice. Most of the suites have kitchens but no stoves (not sure why, but not a biggie for us.)

Friday night, most of the group walked 5 minutes down the road to O'Malley's pub and had pizza, nachos, etc. This is a very casual pub atmosphere and the food was excellent.

For breakfasts, we all went to the Ocean Breeze Cafe both mornings because the weather was bad and it is right across the street from the hotel. Some got a muffin and coffee to go for about $4; DH and I had a wonderful sitdown breakfast that set us back $40 plus tip but was worth it. Eggs benedict for him, a breakfast sandwich croissant for me, sides of homefries, a muffin to share, and two very big fresh squeezed OJs that were fab-u-lous.

Others reported enjoying good chowder and burgers at the Mudville Pub, a teeny bit off the beaten track (just off Thames but at the very beginning of Thames before all the shopping/ restaurants.) This looked to be the place where the locals go. I watched the cook hand-making burgers to order but we only sampled the beer, which was excellent

For dinner Saturday, we called the Red Parrot Restaurant at about 5:30 pm and asked if they could take a reservation and/or accomodate our party of 15. They don't take reservations but told us to come on down. We walked over, which took 10 minutes, waited another 10 minutes, and were seated. The bartender told us this would be doubtful at 7pm, but at 6pm they worked it out for us and I was very impressed. (And when we left at 7:30ish, it was quite packed). Everyone enjoyed their food.

Saturday afternoon we went to the Marble House mansion. Three of the mansions are decorated for Christmas and this was one of them. We just showed up, bought tickets ($11 adults, $4 kids) and were given individual headsets to take the self-guided tour. Took about 35 minutes, and at each room you had the option to choose additional, more detailed tape recordings about what you just saw. I liked that we could all go at our own pace.

Sunday morning we did a very short part of the cliff walk. Someday I will go back without the younguns and the elders and do the whole thing. We could see the mansions from the back, and the view is beautiful. Saw a bunch of surfers out trying to catch a wave.

Shopping is plentiful - chain stores (gap, chicos, etc) and great little independent places.

So a good time was had by all: kids aged 4 to 12 and adults aged 42 to 79.

Nobody had a bad meal, and I feel like we could go back there for the next 5 years before we ran out of dining options.


alley is offline  
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Nov 20th, 2008, 08:06 PM
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Wonderful report! Do come back and walk the whole cliffwalk....it is wonderful! We usually park at Narragansett next to Salve Regina, and take the road back admiring the most beautiful olde trees and fences and architecture. It is really a perfect walk/hike of nature and architecture.
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Nov 23rd, 2008, 03:17 PM
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While I'd agree that doing a larger portion of the Cliffwalk in Newport is a must, much of the southernmost part of it is primitively maintained, to put it kindly. That's likely not a problem for most older teens or younger adults -- but for younger kids, older adults, or those with any sort of mobility problem, bad ankles, non-sturdy shoes, strollers, and the like, I'd give that portion a miss. There's a warning sign at some point that lets you know this, and given that I've walked the whole Cliffwalk in past, I'd say it's advice worth heeding for those that need it.
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Nov 23rd, 2008, 04:19 PM
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Hi, Alley - I feel like I was following you - my husband and I were at the Wellington 11/14 to 11/20 (had to leave a day early to work). We had a great time. We've been to Newport before so this time was really just to relax and rest and enjoy. With two people it's much easier to get into restaurants - we ate at Brick Alley, Red Parrot for lunch, Mudville, Gary's Handy Lunch (diner type for breakfast). We also went to the matinee at the Newport Playhouse on Sunday. This was a lot of fun - they have a buffet lunch, then you go see the play, then you can go back into the restaurant part for cabaret entertainment which was very good.

We found the suites very nice. Decor was a bit dated but I've been in much worse. Our unit was very clean - I'm picky, too. We had a two bedroom suite for the two of us so we had plenty of room! We were very happy overall.

We walked the Cliff Walk two days - the first day we parked at Narragansett and walked to First Beach and Back. The second day we parked again at Narragansett and walked in the other direction to the end and then came back on the road. It is more difficult. There is quite a bit of walking over uneven rocks. It was a beautiful walk. This was Monday and Tuesday -it was beautiful both days. I went back on Wednesday to walk and it was much colder, then on Thursday I just walked around Thames Street before leaving.

The only thing I didn't like is no wi-fi in the suites. There is wi-fi in the clubhouse if you bring your laptop and there is a computer there for you to use, too. All in all this was a great get-away and we hope to come back again. We used a timeshare exchange this time. Hopefully an exchange will pop up again - off season is a great time to go! You beat me to a trip report.
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Nov 25th, 2008, 05:54 PM
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Hockeymom, how funny that we had such a similar trip!

Thanks for the details on the cliff walk and the Newport Playhouse - I had not heard of the latter and will have to check that out for the next trip. All concerned had so much fun that we plan to return next November. (Maybe we'll get lucky and the weather will be a tiny bit warmer and a tiny bit drier next November!)
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