A Year of Rhode Island Staycations

12 places across the state worth packing for


As Rhode Islanders, it’s nice to remind ourselves from time to time that we live in a tourist destination. Looking from the outside in, national media outlets including Travel + Leisure, People, and The New York Times have all recently touted the charms of the smallest state, not to mention that Newport consistently tops lists of best places in the country to get married. Sometimes the best way to appreciate what you’ve got is to revisit it with a fresh set of eyes and immerse yourself like a traveler. Here, you’ll find a year of ideas, pairing places with things to do and where to stay. In most cases, you only need to park the car once, so you can explore by foot or public transportation, which only adds to the feel of being off on an adventure. We’ve aimed to include a range of price points and encourage researching year-round rates for the best fit for your budget. If we missed your favorite, please let us know by sending an email to marketing@heyrhody.com


JANUARY - Providence

Cosmopolitan Living Downtown at The Beatrice

Events like Providence Restaurant Weeks and Rhode Island Brew Fest make January perfect for a city sleepover. There’s nothing like knowing that after a night on the town, a beautifully appointed room – with a heated toilet seat – awaits. Since its 2021 opening, The Beatrice has received praise from Condé Nast Traveler (ranked #6 Best Hotel in the Northeast) and on Tripadvisor (#1 hotel in the Providence market). Elegant first impressions aside, this boutique hotel is full of heart (named for the owner’s beloved mom) with thoughtful details at every turn. Rooms are contemporary and comfortable, and while there is a long list of amenities, guests are quick to gush about the Dyson hair dryers and bidets (with various settings). Enjoy an Italian meal at posh onsite Bellini Providence, before heading to the private Bellini Rooftop for craft cocktails backdropped by the skyline. Along with ongoing deals, look for pop-up specials that connect stays with popular attractions. TheBeatrice.com


FEBRUARY - Newport

OceanCliff is a Historic Homebase for Winter Adventures

February in the City by the Sea means the annual Newport Winter Festival. Encompassing 10 days, the schedule truly has something for everyone: live music performances, scavenger hunts, trail rides, walking tours, workshops, sports clinics, and more. Having lodgings close to the action enables rolling out of bed for early-riser plans like the Aquidneck Growers Market at Stoneacre Garden, and doing the hustle after dark at the OceanCliff Hotel Silent Disco. Not just for weddings, historic OceanCliff has guest rooms in the main building and the four-bedroom Gatehouse – many with sleigh beds and ocean or estate views – so you can wander to your room after the last dance. NewportExperience.com


Cocoa and A La Carte at The Chanler

For a decadent treat, motor over to The Chanler at Cliff Walk for their Hot Chocolate Bar. Bundle up to sip your choice of dark or milk chocolate (adult twist available) by the firepit. Linger longer by making a reservation at one of their restaurants: The Cafe (a la carte and prix fixe lunch and dinner), and Cara, a Forbes Five-Star restaurant with blind-tasting menus. Instagrammers won’t want to miss the opulent restrooms. TheChanler.com


MARCH - Westerly

Stargazing and Quiet Luxury at Weekapaug Inn

During summertime, Weekapaug Inn is a parade of color with lobster boils, sundresses, and yellow pool umbrellas, but in the thick of winter, it’s equally spectacular. Far from bright lights, after dark, the back lawn becomes a stargazer’s wonderland. Adirondack chairs are at the ready, and if you’re lucky, the firepit is ablaze and s’mores kits are nearby; on those special nights when the stars align, embark on a moonlit paddle on Quonochontaug Pond led by the resident naturalist. Back inside, a cozy bed fitted with luxury linens awaits. Spend days playing board games by the fireplace in common rooms, or on beach or birding expeditions, donning boots borrowed from the Hunter closet. The atmosphere extends to The Restaurant, where chef Andrew Brooks serves farm-to-table dishes (don’t skip the biscuits). This gem has been recognized as one of the “Best Hotels in the World” by Travel + Leisure and is part of the Relais & Châteaux group. WeekapaugInn.com


To commemorate the Weekapaug Inn’s 125th anniversary, the venue is offering a weekend buyout of the property, priced at $125,000, which includes all meals and activities.


APRIL - Newport

Daffodils from Dusk to Dawn at Hotel Viking

For decades, all-volunteer non-profit Newport In Bloom has encouraged the planting of daffodils around town, resulting in 1,350,000 flowers and Newport Daffodil Days. The nearly month-long jubilee includes Daffy Deals during Newport Restaurant Week, plus a calendar of everything from races to dog parades. Plant yourself smack-dab in the action at Hotel Viking. The landmark lodgings offer a mix of modern and quaint, starting with its impressive exterior. Enter to find the lobby bar, access to One Bellevue Restaurant, and Hill Market, a convenient mini-cafe. Pre-game photo ops in nearby flower fields with services at the award-winning SpaFjör, and finish the day outside at the courtyard fire pit beneath strands of lights, before heading to your room. Ready for even more daffodils? Drive to Windmill Hill in Jamestown for a view that evokes Holland. HotelViking.com


MAY - Matunuck

Dinner, a Show, and Breakfast in Matunuck

In the South Kingstown village of Matunuck, expect to find the trappings of a beach town worth its weight in salt: a surf shop, beloved pub, bar that hosts live music, and places for ice cream, pizza, sandwiches, and coffee. Within a small radius, there is also the renowned Matunuck Oyster Bar, and equally acclaimed barn playhouse, Bill Hanney’s Theatre by the Sea. The former brings gastronomic tourists from NYC and the latter puts on Broadway-caliber shows – starting up with May’s A Chorus Line. Until 2021, there was no place nearby to stay (and avoid the pitch-black drive home). Enter Admiral Dewey Inn, a 12-guestroom house, locally owned and operated. Each morning a continental breakfast is served in the dining room, and if you spend time in the parlor playing board games or LPs, you’re sure to run into travelers on the same culinary, theatrical, or seaside adventures. AdmiralDeweyInn.com


JUNE - Pawtuxet Village

Turn Gaspee Days into a Weekend with Gregory Hill Boutique Vacation Cottages

Rhode Islanders need not wait until July to celebrate the red, white, and blue, when there’s Pawtuxet Village in June. This charming riverside enclave gets festooned with a flag on every pole along Broad Street in preparation for Gaspee Days, a commemoration of the 1772 burning of the HMS Gaspee, considered the first violent act against the Crown by the colonists leading up to the American Revolution. Activities are planned around the clock and the entire area feels like a party. Booking a Gregory Hill Boutique Cottage ensures you don’t miss a beat – no need to fret about parking or a designated driver. Each cottage is styled in coastal-chic perfection, so live like a Nancy Meyers character as you lounge on a plump sofa prior to venturing to the farmers market before Saturday’s parade, or perhaps enjoy the Perfect Picnic add-on while witnessing Sunday’s Burning of the Gaspee at Pawtuxet Park. GregoryHillHomes.com


JULY - Wickford

Art, Sun, and AC at Blue Beach Motel

There is some sort of fete happening year-round in Wickford. Even if you don’t go just to shop and dine, or experience village-wide events like Daffodil Days (April), Wicked Weeks (October), or the Festival of Lights (December), chances are you’ve been to the Wickford Art Festival. Each July, Wilson Park becomes a fairgrounds of canopy tents where browsers can view the work of over 200 artists in a wide variety of mediums. While there’s plenty of food available at the festival, village restaurants are just a half-mile walk away – with everything from juice bars to cafes to waterfront dining. Nearby is the Blue Beach Motel, an under-the-radar spot along Post Road. All 21 rooms and suites have been completely renovated with a shoreline palette of aqua, white, and gray. After a full day in the sun, what’s better than returning to a cool room close by? BlueBeachMotel.com


AUGUST - Block Island

Seaside Fun at Champlin’s Hotel, Marina & Resort

A visit to Champlin’s Marina & Resort is not your typical Block Island experience. The expansive property on nine acres boasts a 140+ slip deep-water marina, and the amenity-rich resort feels like an all-ages summer camp in the best possible way. Stemming from the welcoming staff, the atmosphere is folksy and one can imagine many lifelong friendships have been forged in the pool. With zero hassles, it’s easy to go from one activity to another, and there are multiple dining options. A day might begin at Cafe Boutique, some pool time, a bike ride to Payne’s Donuts or a paddle, and lunch at the pool or food truck. Guests at The Landing restaurant emit the freshly showered relaxed vibes of vacationers, and after a delicious meal are sure to stop for ice cream at Sugar Shack before mudslides and live music at Trader’s Dock Bar. Newly renovated rooms are stylish, comfortable, and steps away from everything. ChamplinsResort.com


Ferry to Montauk

Like Block Island, Montauk, NY is prized for its beaches, has a historic lighthouse, and loads of oceanfront activities and allure. Viking Superstar provides high-speed ferry service directly from Champlin’s Marina. Season begins in May. VikingFleet.com


SEPTEMBER - Providence

Artful Suites in a Former Mill at Dye House

While it may still feel like summer, the return of college students infuses a mix of fall and academia into the air. The city aims to impress with some kind of fest most every weekend – from seafood to veg to beer – and while the WaterFire 2024 schedule is TBD at press time, last September saw two full lightings. Downtown has many excellent hotels, but if you’re seeking a uniquely New England experience, head to the Olneyville area. Dye House is a boutique hotel and event space that takes its cue from its origins as a textile mill. Since opening in 2020, the owners have worked to be boosters of the neighborhood, connecting the dots for guests to hyper-local activities, shops, and eats, including Wes’ Rib House, a beloved joint recently resuscitated. Suites are spacious, elegant, unique, and furnished with Rhody-made goods, and for those wary of valets and garages – there’s a parking lot. DyeHouseRI.com


OCTOBER - Charlestown

Dinner and a Ghost Story at General Stanton Inn

Love a good ghost story or want a tale of your own? Make a reservation at General Stanton Inn. Mindfully renovated and reopened in 2022, the grand yellow property is rich with history and has hosted notable guests since 1740, including being a “room where it happened” with Generals Washington and Lafayette, and a stop on the Underground Railroad. Visits must begin at the Tavern, where over a sumptuous meal with craft beers and specialty cocktails (save room for the skillet cookie with ice cream), servers are ready to dish about spectral encounters with The General, one of his young daughters, or the ghost cat. Cozy up in one of 15 well-appointed guest rooms, either updated Colonial spaces in the main house or deluxe coastal-themed rooms on the western side of the property – consider sleeping with one eye open on spirit watch. Pro-tip: a Saturday stay ensures early arrival to The General’s Market on Sunday after enjoying the brunch buffet! TheGeneralStantonInn.com


NOVEMBER - Richmond

Horseback Riding with a Side of Potatoes at The Preserve Resort & Spa

If you enjoy activities like shooting clays from a 25-station course, then you’re probably familiar with The Preserve Resort & Spa, a luxury residential and sporting club on 3,500 acres in the heart of Washington County. If not, you might know it as the place with the Hobbit Houses – as seen on Instagram – of which there are three. During a visit, you could give archery a shot, zipline across 250-foot elevation drops, ride ATVs, or go fly fishing, for starters, followed by a trip to the OH! Spa for restorative treatments and yoga. Accommodation options include a room or suite at Hilltop Lodge, a tiny home, cottage, townhome, or cabin – each with their own amenities such as a fireplace and special views (water, forest, horses). For dining, in addition to the Hobbit Houses, there’s Double Barrel Steak, which is known for its Thanksgiving Day Buffet, complete with all starters, classic sides, and sweets. ThePreserveRI.com


DECEMBER - Westerly

Merriment, Massages, and More at Ocean House

When a hotel has a suite called Santa’s Secret Hideaway, you know it’s a special place. Each year children await the Santa Checks In event at Ocean House, where the big guy is on hand to hear lists and give small gifts. The yellow beachfront resort in the Watch Hill area of Westerly is the only AAA Five Diamond and Forbes Five-Star hotel in the state, and has a full schedule of annual traditions. Make memories while creating wreaths, ornaments, truffle trees, and more at workshops; reserve a spot at holiday brunches and dinners; and marvel at the gingerbread house before grabbing a sweet from the candy bar. The Relais & Châteaux property has 49 guest rooms and 20 signature suites, all outfitted with thoughtful touches and luxe amenities. For grown-ups seeking relaxation amidst the merriness, the Ocean & Harvest Spa puts the “treat” in treatment, especially with seasonal offerings like 2023’s Sugar Cookie Massage – an absolute indulgence of vanilla oil and house-made nutmeg sugar scrub. OceanHouseRI.com



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