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Tours, Groups, Exclusive Experiences
Explore our various tour types to find what’s best for you and your group.
History of Newport and the Mansions
Founded in 1639, Newport was an important port city, a center of the slave trade, a fashionable resort and the summer home of the Gilded Age rich.
Explore the Gilded Age
The Gilded Age was a period of unprecedented change in America. Fortunes were spent on luxuries such as the lavish "summer cottages" of Newport.
Episode Deep Dive
Learn about the people, places and events depicted in Julian Fellowes' popular historical drama series.
Current members can see a full list of benefits and any information regarding Members Events.
Become a Member
We invite you to become a member of the Preservation Society today. In addition to joining an active community of preservation supporters and advocates, members are offered unlimited access to all open houses.
Our mission is to protect, preserve, and present the best of Newport County's architectural heritage. Learn more about us and our work.
Personal Photography on the Grounds
Rent our museums for commercial photography & videography, TV production, and wedding photography.
Commercial Filming or Photography
Museum Rentals & Weddings
Host your wedding, rehearsal dinner, corporate event, or other celebration at our historic museums.
Since Newport’s beginnings as a colonial seaport, generations of its citizens have looked to China for knowledge, beauty, fortune and freedom. In turn, many different people of Chinese heritage, including artists, merchants, immigrant entrepreneurs and women suffragists, shaped all aspects of life in Newport. Their stories are at the heart of this exhibition.
The Celestial City explores China’s deep influence on Newport from the 18th century through the Gilded Age (1865-1915), when the city emerged as America’s premier summer playground and the fall of China’s last imperial dynasty transformed the ancient nation.
The extraordinary objects on display include more than 100 works from the Preservation Society’s collection and other institutions in a range of media, from paintings, sculptures, prints and photographs to fashion, ceramics, lacquerwares and lanterns.
Highlights include treasures of Chinese art collected by Newport merchants and industrialists; photographs and stories from Newport’s early Chinese community; and the writings, portraits and family heirlooms of heroic Chinese women suffragists. Contemporary artworks by Yu-Wen Wu and Jennifer Ling Datchuk illuminate Chinese contributions to Newport as well as hidden connections between the Newport mansions and the Chinese-American experience.
Portrait of Mabel Ping-Hua Lee, Chinese Suffragist, in Barnard College Yearbook, Class of 1916
Purchase of The Preservation Society of Newport County
Portrait of Grace Yip Typond, Chinese Suffragist
Unidentified photographer, New York, c. 1910
Collection of Douglas J. Chu
Detail of Standing Screen
Li Ailian, 19th century
Gift of Mrs. Elizabeth M. Smith
Postcard with Chop Suey Restaurant (Bun Jun Low or Moy Fou Restaurant),
195 Thames Street
Tichnor Bros., Inc., Boston, c. 1913
Collection of Daniel P. Titus
Unidentified maker (Chinese), 18th century
Gift of the Estate of Mr. and Mrs. Edward J. Berwind II
The Chinese Teahouse at Marble House, Newport
Richard Howland Hunt and Joseph Howland Hunt (architects), 1912-1914
Photograph Andrea Hansen
“N.A.W.S.A. Catching Up With China” Suffrage Banner
The Huntington Library, Susan B. Anthony Collection
Plate Belonging to Godfrey Malbone (1695-1768)
Unidentified maker (Chinese), c. 1760
Gift of Mrs. Philip G. Birckhead
Cigar Box Inscribed "W" for William Shepard Wetmore
Unidentified maker (Chinese), c. 1835
Gift of Mrs. Elizabeth Morris Smith
Portrait of Wu Bingjian
Guan Qiaochang (also known as Lamqua), c. 1840
Gift of the Estate of Mrs. Gwendolen E. Rives
Postcard with Lee Yun Laundry at 329 Thames Street, in Business from 1890-1942
The Metropolitan News Co., Boston, c. 1900
Collection of Daniel P. Titus
Detail of Informal Dragon Robe
Unidentified maker (Chinese), late 19th century
Gift of Mr. Edward Lee Cave
Explore the underground systems that made this great house a marvel of technology for its time.
See and hear how the other half lived. This tour will highlight the stories of some of the men and women who worked to service the social whirl of Newport during the Gilded Age.
In conjunction with "The Celestial City" exhibition at Rosecliff, our Fall Lecture Series explores different aspects of the Chinese-American experience and the many ways life in Newport and America was influenced and enriched by people of Chinese heritage.
Distinguished speakers Dr. Cathleen D. Cahill and Bayer Lee discuss Chinese and American women’s impact on the US suffrage movement.
Learn insights into the dazzling artworks in the Preservation Society’s groundbreaking new exhibition that reveals Chinese and Chinese-American individuals' contributions to life in Newport.
Scholar John Eng-Wong examines the impact of the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882 and how social practices of the era impacted Chinese families. Tickets/registration available soon.
This outdoor spectacle of holiday lights will dazzle and delight you! The 13-acre historic landscape of The Breakers turns into a magical wonderland of color and light. Open on select evenings through the season. Includes The Breakers interior tour.
A great Newport tradition! See The Breakers, Marble House and The Elms dressed in their festive holiday finery. It’s the most spectacular time of the year at these awe-inspiring Gilded Age mansions.
It is never too early to start planning for your next holiday to remember! Mark your calendar to join us for the annual Holiday Dinner Dance at The Breakers.
Save the dates for the 19th annual festival, featuring the Vintner Dinner, Sunday Brunch and tasty yet educational seminar experiences.
Download our tour app before your visit and bring your earbuds.
Parking is free onsite at all properties except for Hunter House and The Breakers Stable & Carriage House, where street parking is available.
Answers to some of our most frequently asked questions.
Explore the 11 properties under the stewardship of the Preservation Society and open as historic house museums.
Partners in Preservation