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The Breakers

Certificate of Excellence
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Address: 44 Ochre Point Ave, Newport, RI 02840-6906
Phone Number:
+1 401-847-1000
09:00 - 18:00
Open now
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Sun - Sat 09:00 - 18:00

The Breakers is the grandest of Newport's summer "cottages" and a...

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.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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    Very good
  • 86
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  • 10
A historical treasure

We have visited the Breakers many times but never during the holiday season. It was even more beautiful with all the Christmas decorations in place. The tour is self-guided with a... read more

5 of 5 bubblesReviewed yesterday
via mobile
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3,718 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 3,510: English reviews
Level Contributor
112 reviews
63 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed yesterday NEW via mobile

We have visited the Breakers many times but never during the holiday season. It was even more beautiful with all the Christmas decorations in place. The tour is self-guided with a headset and handheld device which allows you to take your time as you go through the mansion room by room. Unhurried and informative, this is a great way to... More 

Thank WeBvacations
Louisville, Kentucky
Level Contributor
97 reviews
20 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed yesterday NEW

There are historic Newport mansions, and then there's the Breakers. We only had time to visit one, so we had to choose carefully, and this was the one. It rivals many mini-palaces that I've visited on San Francisco's Gold Coast and even abroad in France and Germany. You like marble? The Breakers has got it, plus period furnishings, kitchenware and... More 

Thank jimhopkins
Middletown, New York
Level Contributor
36 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed yesterday NEW

We enjoyed a tour of The Breakers on a winter day. our guide was fairly knowledgeable (A few errors and miscues but not too bad.) The beautiful views from the upper floor made me wish it were warmer to be outside. Definitely worth the price of admission.

Thank Ohmite58
Level Contributor
18 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed yesterday NEW

I didn't realize how big and grand these mansions would be. We spent a lot more time in each than we thought we would. I was not a fan of the audio tour and would have preferred a docent led tour or more docents stationed in the house to answer questions.

Thank Emera65
Southampton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 days ago NEW via mobile

A beautiful, grand example of the opulent 'summer cottages' from a bygone era! Fascinating contrast seeing the grand reception areas and dining areas where the Vanderbilt's would have entertained their guests to where the staff would have spent hours preparing extravagant feasts and where the maids would have gone from one area of the house to the bedrooms via secret... More 

Thank stephonthego
Wales, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
8 reviews
5 attraction reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 days ago NEW

It is always amazing to see how the rich lived their lives. Summer homes for the New York elite of the 1890s, the home is a great display of innovative architecture and classic Italian design. Platinum on the walls... Check! The tour guide was very informative and upbeat, making the tour a unique ad fun experience. After the tour, feel... More 

Thank telulla311
Level Contributor
32 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 days ago NEW

I thought I was doing ok before I went to the Breakers- shocking how wasteful people were then but lovely to live it for an hour. We had a tour guide who was very informative and keen to answer any questions.

Thank JulieROrlando
Burlington, Connecticut
Level Contributor
155 reviews
21 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 140 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 days ago NEW

We visited when the Breakers was decorated for the holidays - really stunning! Even though it was crowded the audio tour is a nice pace. You have the option of listening to additional stories or moving through the mansion more quickly. It can be tough to get nice photos - wish they had an area set up specifically for that.... More 

Thank 13Narya
Arlington, Tennessee, United States
Level Contributor
9 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago NEW

We've lived off and on in RI for 15 years but this was the first time we had the opportunity to tour the Breakers at Christmas time. Taking advantage of the residents weekend we were able to visit at no charge. The decorations are breathtaking! I wish we had dressed a little nicer (mostly the kids) because the photos in... More 

Thank Jennifer S
Level Contributor
4 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago NEW via mobile

unbelievable museum was interesting for all ages, my young son kept taking pictures it was definitely memorable and extremely interesting

Thank Lauretta P

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