This lovely Victorian inn near the Cliff Walk, overlooking Newport's first beach, gets everything right. It's fancy enough to provide guests a taste of the Gilded Age, but the owners also imbue the place with a friendly and casual feel that fits most people's vacation mode. Ask for a room with a water view—if you're lucky you'll get the Beatrice, which has a tub with a view of Easton Bay. Three of the rooms have separate entrances, and there's a three-room cottage on the grounds. All rooms have fireplaces and antiques and are decorated very elegantly in opulent turn-of-the century fashion. Bathrooms are particularly well-appointed, including one that has a shower equipped with aromatherapy. Service is exceptional. Wine and hors d'oeuvres are served at cocktail hour, and the turndown service includes cookies delivered to the rooms at night. The inn has its own wine cellar and makes bottles available for sale to guests.
- Laura Reckford