Hotels:The city of Newport, Rhode Island is synonymous with opulent mansions, jazz festivals and its scenic coastline. One of the best reasons to visit this city has just been discovered with the unveiling of the Hotel Viking's new Viking Wing.
The pet-friendly Hotel Viking of Newport has recently undergone a $6.2 million facelift and reopened its original Viking Wing with 66 rooms, including 10 Mansion Suites and two specialty luxury suites. In keeping with the Newport tradition, the Mansion Suites have each been designed to capture the essence of the city's famous mansions from the Chateau to Rosecliff.
The Mansion Suites have their own unique "parlors" with gorgeous furniture, Oriental carpets and wood floors. Even though the traditions are maintained at the Hotel Viking, they have paid careful detail to ensuring every modern amenity is included such as LCD televisions, glass doors leading to the separate bathroom and showers with rain showers. While the Viking Rooms are the main attraction here, there are also premier rooms with marble bathrooms and beautiful artwork along with Newport rooms and Noble suites.
The Breakers Suite is the grandest and largest of all the suites at the Hotel Viking. The main parlor here features a formal dining room, fireplace and wood floors. Families often reserve this popular suite as it also features a separate master bedroom and private adjacent guest bedroom with its own sitting area.
When you first step into the hotel, you will be charmed by its Georgian Colonial architecture with some of the original architectural elements still intact. The original hotel was built during the famed Gilded Age and opened in 1926 and is a member of the Historic Hotels of America and listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Over the years, the hotel has hosted numerous socialites, dignitaries and celebrities, including the Astors, the Vanderbilts, President and Mrs. John F. Kennedy, Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong.
Be sure to stop by for dinner at One Bellevue, the hotel's signature restaurant. During the summer months, the restaurant's outdoor patio is filled with diners but the main dining room's upscale décor is equally appealing. Fall appetizers at this American bistro include roasted butternut squash soup, traditional New England clam chowder and pumpkin tortelloni. Entrees include mustard crusted halibut, roasted sea bass, sea salt encrusted bone-in beef ribeye and macadamia and goat cheese crusted lamb rack chops.
Each afternoon, One Bellevue also hosts afternoon tea complete with finger sandwiches, scones and tea breads. The time-honored tradition of socializing and relaxing during the afternoon hours has been preserved here. Sip on a cup of vanilla bean black tea while sampling a cranberry buttermilk scone with lemon cream.
A visit to the hotel would not be complete without a stop at SpaTerre, which specializes in exotic Balinese spa treatments and Thai body rituals. There were so many sumptuous massage and body therapies to choose from, including a hot stone massage, table Thai massage, seaside salt glow, Atlantic seaweed body mask, Fijian milk and honey body wrap and even a massage medley.
My husband and I indulged in our first ever couple's massage, a luxurious treat. The massage combined pressure point techniques leaving us looking and feeling relaxed and rejuvenated. We stopped by the adjacent Fitness Center, which was equipped with treadmills, an elliptical machine, free weights and bicycles.
The Hotel Viking offered a wonderful weekend getaway at one of the most luxurious properties in town and best of all you can bring your four-legged friends along with you for the trip.
For LxM Kellie K. Speed