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“Great stop with grandparents”
Review of The Breakers

The Breakers
Ranked #1 of 82 things to do in Newport
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: The Breakers is the grandest of Newport's summer "cottages" and a symbol of the Vanderbilt family's social and financial preeminence in turn of the century America. Commodore Cornelius Vanderbilt established the family fortune in steamships and later in the New York Central Railroad, which was a pivotal development in the industrial growth of the nation during the late 19th century. The Commodore's grandson, Cornelius Vanderbilt II, became Chairman and President of the New York Central Railroad system in 1885, and purchased a wooden house called The Breakers in Newport during that same year. In 1893, he commissioned architect Richard Morris Hunt to design a villa to replace the earlier wood-framed house which was destroyed by fire the previous year. Hunt directed an international team of craftsmen and artisans to create a 70 room Italian Renaissance- style palazzo inspired by the 16th century palaces of Genoa and Turin. Allard and Sons of Paris assisted Hunt with furnishings and fixtures, Austro-American sculptor Karl Bitter designed relief sculpture, and Boston architect Ogden Codman decorated the family quarters.
Reviewed July 23, 2013

We visited the breakers with two teens and grandparents. The kids were very interested in the history and were able to walk ahead on the tour. The tour offers headsets with both an option for children. Our younger teen followed this and enjoyed the tour. We were traveling with a grandparent with accessibility issues and the staff was extremely accommodating. Both staff outside on the grounds and inside the house were extremely helpful in navigating the house and grounds. We were able to take a scooter on the grounds and used a walker in the house. The house offers elevator service. Staff provided additional house details and information and added to the visit. They have a very large gift shop and both the kids and grandparents enjoyed browsing around after the tour.

Thank JCtravels4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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in 885 reviews
"gilded age"
in 466 reviews
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in 389 reviews
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in 170 reviews
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"take your time"
in 62 reviews
"american history"
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4,320 - 4,324 of 5,223 reviews

Reviewed July 23, 2013

We took our teen boys to see this and Rosecliff during our early July trip back East. Just stunning to see The Breakers again (toured it about 20 years ago). The audio tour was great, the grounds are extrmely well kept and the tour takes you through most rooms. Very fun to think about living such a grand lifestyle.

Thank Type-A-Mother
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 22, 2013

Newport is one of my favorite places in the world. Houses like The Breakers, along with the magnificent scenery, make this town one of the kind and transports visitors into the era of unimaginable wealth and privilege. I have visited, on numerous occasions, every mansion owned by the Newport Preservation Society, and none can compare to the Breakers when it comes to the sheer magnitude and opulence of the place.

If you follow the included audio tour, the entire visit should last 1.5 to 2 hours.

Thank aphroditehalo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 22, 2013

I took the audio tour of the house. There was too much to listen to in one day and a lot of emphasis on architecture and decoration. I'm more interested in the stories of the people who lived there.(My favorite mansion was always Astors' Beechwood). I liked that they include oral histories of both upstairs and downstairs folk. The main floor of the house is very opulent. It was designed to resemble an Italian villa. Upstairs is French Provencal style aka shabby chic. The grounds are spectacular with a breathtaking view of the ocean. The wide terrace is a nice place to relax or stroll around the extensive lawn and look at the flower gardens and the trees. There's also a child's play house on the property used by the Vanderbilt children. It closes before the main house so I didn't get to see inside. I can easily imagine Cora from Downton Abbey spending her summers here with her family. Fans of Downton Abbey and Upstairs/Downstairs will enjoy the experience of seeing how American aristocrats lived.

Thank QNPoohBear
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed July 22, 2013

Such a beautiful place could spend all day taking in the ambiance. Highly suggest taking the cliff walk if possible.

Thank Hollyg1113
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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