Newport, RI: More Rum, Please

I ended up in Newport the same way as last time: there was a couch to sleep on and I went for it.* Maybe one day I’ll lunch with the well-heeled ladies at Castle Hill Inn. But anyway, it had been a rough week at work and I was looking for some relaxation by the water.

I was 17 the last time I was in Newport. At the time, the crowds of tourists browsing Thames Street excited me. I wanted to soak up all the energy that I was deprived of in my sleepy Connecticut hometown. Ten years later, I prefer to escape from the crowds instead.

And you can do that in Newport. There’s plenty of space along the Cliff Walk to find a spot of your own. Especially with a storm rolling in.

But at one point I found myself back on Thames Street nevertheless. I shouldered through crowds in search of a quiet space. And I had some successes.

I took time to smell each of the fragrances at Shore Soap Company, found Mokka Coffeehouse’s courtyard filled with antiques, and peered in on the renovation of the Coronet, a massive gilded age yacht.

Then I saw this sign outside Surf Club that stopped me in my tracks.

There was one seat left at the bar. I took it. “Can I have a Pina colada without the pineapple and coconut?” I asked the bartender. “I’m on a diet.”

He was so accommodating.

So I sipped my drink, soaked up the sun, watched the people come and go around me, and felt truly relaxed.

Sometimes all you need to sail away is a warm welcome and a bit of rum.

For more Newport recommendations, check out my Pinterest board.

And if you’d like to take a five-minute trip to historic Newport without leaving your chair, here’s a wonderful video from the Newport Historical Society:

*The couch was in my parents’ room at the Marshall Slocum Inn, which I highly recommend for its cozy, historic room and its world-class blueberry-stuffed french toast. Thanks Plum Brook Chocolate for sponsoring this post! My mom is an artisan chocolatier who was catering a wedding in Newport that weekend. Visit her company’s website here!

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