Wednesday, August 29, 2012

"Beacon Hill House"

"Beacon Hill House" was built for millionaire Arthur Curtiss James and his wife, Harriet. The James occupied the home for many years and occupied it continually for the summers. Mrs. James hosted a famous party titled Masque of The Blue Garden, held in the estate's Blue Gardens. Also on the property was a large farming complex, called the Swiss Village, which continues to stand today. Harriet died in 1941, followed by her husband three weeks later. The mansion was sold after James's death and sat empty for quite a long time. It was constantly ransacked by vandals, who stole many of the mansion's furnishings and decorative features. It burned down in 1967 and the grounds were subdivided.

Friday, August 24, 2012

"Indian Spring" Cottage, A.K.A. Wrentham House

"Indian Spring" was the summer home of the Busk Family. It was built by Richard Morris Hunt, with landscaping designed by Fredrick Law Olmstead. The 22-room, 14,400 square foot mansion includes 8 bedrooms, a 1,800 square foot master suite, which includes his and her baths and an adjacent study, 13 bathrooms, a large great hall, private library and dining room and a large veranda. The mansion has in recent years undergone a restoration process, restoring the original interiors and grounds.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

"The Ledges" Cottage In Newport RI

Here are some photos I found of "The Ledges" cottage in Newport RI when is was up for rent, I currently don't know if it is still up for rent. The home was built for Robert Cushing by John Sturgis, it has passed through many family hands over the years and it is currently owned by Howard Cushing III and his wife, Nora Cushing.


Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The Newport Country Club

The Newport Country Club was founded by Theodore Havemeyer, who wanted to establish golf in Newport since his return from a trip to South of France. Theodore had convinced a few of his friend to sponsor the project and all they needed was a place to build it. They picked a 140-acre property named Rocky Farm, which they purchased for $80,000, and they commissioned architect Whitney Warren to design the clubhouse. The course was designed by William Davis and encompassed 18 courses. Today anyone can get into the Newport Country Club for only a small fee and play the courses that America's richest people had once played.

Monday, August 13, 2012

The Vanderbilt Cottages: Rough Point and Vinland

Vinland (top) was the summer home of Vanderbilt heiress Florence Twombly and her husband Hamilton Twombly. Situated on Ochre Point, it was built in 1884 by Peabody and Sterns for the New York heiress Catherine Lorillard Wolfe and was bought from her heirs by the Twomblys. Like other ocean front Newport properties, it had had the end of it's lawn the Cliff Walk, which was opened by a state law, guaranteeing public access to the shoreline. So if it wanted to, the public could observe the life of the house from the lawn side, a curious exception to the valued privacy and aloofness of Newport life.

Rough Point (bottom) was the summer home of Frederick and Louise Vanderbilt, who built it in 1891. They opened the home with a large ball featuring a Hungarian orchestra-Hungarian Orchestra were an almost invariable accompaniment of Newport parties-and the band from the Newport Casino. The grounds were decorated with Japanese lanterns and umbrellas. Passing out of the family's hands on Frederick's death, Rough Point was for many years the home of tobacco billionairess Doris Duke.

Both homes still survive, Vinland is a part of the Salve Regina University and Rough Point is owned by the Newport Restoration Foundation, founded by Doris Duke.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Bailey's Beach

Bailey's Beach In 1930

Bailey's Beach (today The Sprouting Rock Beach Association) was where Newport's elite flocked to enjoy Newport's beautiful ocean views. It was founded in 1890's and was used by Newport's high society families. To own one of Bailey's Beach's small wooden cabanas could mean acceptance into the  fashionable world of Newport's elite, the only problem was only 500 members were allowed and new members were only added when one member died. Today, Bailey's Beach still has 500 members and is still just as exclusive as it was when the Astors, Vanderbilts, Whitneys and Van Alens occupied it.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

"Beechwood" Cottage Museum Plans

Billionaire Lawrence Ellison has now unveiled plans on turning Caroline Astor's historic Newport cottage, "Beechwood", into a museum to house his large art collection. Ellison plans on restoring the property to the way it was when Mrs. Astor lived there and has called in architect John Grosvenor to oversee the renovation. The renovations include restoring the loggia and glass-walled palm court that were destroyed and replaced by Hurricane Carol in 1954 and also restoring the brownstone that used to cover the exterior. Ellison has also purchased the adjoining carrige house and green house lots and plans on merging the two lots. The grounds will also be restored and covered with lush greenery and gardens. The cost estimates have not been completed yet. 

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