Red Right Returning to Newport

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Experience pure exhilaration at the pinnacle of the Pell Bridge flying high above Newport surrounded by sea where boats bob, glide and motor as you descend into The City by the Sea where generations of sailors, society swells, and guests gather to enjoy the pleasures of summer by the open water.

First stop is Bannister’s Wharf and The Clarke Cooke House, an iconic watering hole with three floors of delightful dining, including the chicly popular Sky Bar.

Then to The Black Pearl, another traditional haunt, to meet Todd Romano for a cocktail on the deck in anticipation of  the evening’s maritime activities.

Next, an invitation to board one of the celebrated McMillen Yachts, the internationally recognized leader in the field of historical wooden boat restoration.

Permission to board!

McMillen specializes in fractional boat ownership with charters available to the luckiest of seafaring souls.

The Enticer is an 85-foot fantail motor yacht designed by the legendary John Trumpy.

Here we are motoring past New York Yacht Club’s Harbour Court on a busy evening.

And later that night, we watched the fireworks as seen through the night’s fog.

As to What To Wear Newport, we were inspired by the centerpiece of our expedition, a fashion show of Ala von Auersperg’s diaphanous creations.

Ala, her daughter Sunny, and a bevy of beauties.

Her latest collection was born of Ala’s life by the sea, its luminescent light, and undulating waves washing on shore.

Photographs by Andrea Hanson.

A wonderful aspect of Ala dressing is its glamour and elegance. Plus, the pieces are a dream to pack for mix and matching — from a lady’s lunch to a black tie wedding. Ala’s pants are the utmost versatile day to night piece and fit like a dream. As recommended in Packing for Travel, we recommend packing in a color scheme and what could be more appropriate for a water side summer holiday.

Sea Blues, Sky Blues

Rachel Sheer Mesh Poncho  $295  /  Titania Cotton Caftan  $775  /  Gala Mesh Wrap  $195  /  Electra Sheer  Mesh Toper  $295  /  Sophie Sheer Mesh Dress  $375

That afternoon comprised a wonderful gathering of Newport Ladies who know how to style Ala’s marvelous creations. Then a dash to the Trunk Show following the festivities as the guests oohed and aahed over the creative collections, stocking up for the upcoming high-style occasions.

Dee Gordon and Louisa Ryan.
Victoria Mele.
Meg Braff.

Pam Owens and Alice Ross.
L. to r.: Minnie Coleman and Joan Tobin; Barbara Glascock.
Mary Anne Lamont, Maureen Donnell, Angela Fischer, DeDe Wilsey, Happy van Beuren, and Libby Hamilton.

Hilary shares her faves: “The wonderful aspect of AvA is there is a piece for every body type and style. Short, long, tunic, shirt dress and incredibly flattering pants, there is something for everyone. The prints originate from paintings that Ala creates each season and they make a splash wherever you wear them.”

A Spashy Affair

Layla Cotton Wrap $500  /  Jerry Sheer Mesh  $295  /  Diane Sheer Mesh Top  $250  /  Elaine Stretch Knit Pants  $295  /  Mock Coffe Dress  $375  /  Kathe Lavender Dress  $650 

Next morning we were off on foot to the Cliff Walk past the most magnificent mansions of the Gilded Age.  Thanks to the Newport Mansions, The Preservation Society of Newport County, many of these have been restored to their original elegance and unimaginable beauty.

The mansions are open to the public and host interesting programs and events throughout the season.

Inside the Gilded Age Tour. Count us in!

Then we made our way to the historic grounds of the International Tennis Hall of Fame where members can serve and volley in McKim, Mead and White’s shrine to the age of leisure pleasures. The grounds are also home to the National Tennis Club, the oldest Court Tennis court in the country.

Jimmy Van Alen, Founder of the Tennis Hall of Fame and inventor of the tiebreak.

Then it was off to polo to experience the fieldside excitement at Newport Polo.

The game of polo has been integral to the sport and social scene in Newport since the Gilded Age.

The Westchester Polo Club, based in Newport, became the first polo club in the United States. The tradition continues with a lively schedule of international match play and charity events to support local organizations.

The international matches attract a sophisticated crowd who gather to sip and spectate.

Halftime divot stomp — a centuries-old tradition.

Mamma Mia … here we go again!  On August 4th, the 22nd Newport Polo’s International Polo Charity Ball will welcome the Swedish Team — the Abba ca Dabra Ball.

Gala MC, Polo captain, and Club president Dan Keating shares the fun: “This is the pinnacle of our summer that so many of us look forward to all year. With the most lively partygoers under one roof, we are excited to assemble for an odyssey with the Swedes for our next mission and make this event our next success.”

If film is more your speed, don’t miss newportFILM line up of new, critically-acclaimed documentaries at outdoor locations throughout Aquidneck Island. Screenings are free and open to the public so grab your picnic basket and head on out for a glorious evening of entertainment under the stars.

The Newport Show Gala Preview Party is another not-to-be missed event of the summer social season. The highest quality dealers of fine art and antiques present their treasures to an audience of a like minded audience of aficionados.  It benefits the Newport Historical Society and the Boys & Girls Clubs of Newport County thus honoring the distinguished past and the promising future of the city.

Anne Hamilton and daughter Dory Benson.
Martha Stewart and friends.

Hilary at the Gala Preview in 2018.

And if you really want to go out-of-this-world with excitement, Outer Space is the place for you!  The Preservation Society of Newport County hosts a galactic gathering of cosmic proportions where generations celebrate its glorious past while welcoming the next and new earthly beings. Dancing shoes required!

We found these interplanetary images from the NYSD Archives in 2018 …

Barbara Chapman and Derek Limbocker.

Meg Braff, Joanna de Neufville, Meredith Wood Prince, Leslie Heaney, and Ruthie McDonough.
L. to r.: Alex Lind Rose and Louis Rose, with Kim and Greg Dryer; Elizabeth and Bill Kahane.
Countess Lizz de Villegas, Jeffrey Caldwell, and Fernanda Gilligan Jess.
Ruth Buchanan.
Kathryn Bohannon, Fraser Maloney, Olivia Wassanaar, Joanna Baker de Neufville, and Sandra Barros.

As the sun sets (or rises) over the bay, we say a fond farewell to The Grande Dame of Summer Resorts to return again, and again, and again.

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