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Review of Marble House

Marble House
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Newport Mansions and Waterfront Sightseeing From...
Ranked #6 of 118 things to do in Newport
Certificate of Excellence
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Owner description: Marble House was built between 1888 and 1892 for Mr. and Mrs. William K. Vanderbilt. It was a summer house, or "cottage", as Newporters called them in remembrance of the modest houses of the early 19th century. But Marble House was much more; it was a social and architectural landmark that set the pace for Newport's subsequent transformation from a quiet summer colony of wooden houses to the legendary resort of opulent stone palaces. Mr. Vanderbilt was the grandson of Commodore Cornelius Vanderbilt, who established the family's fortune in steamships and the New York Central Railroad. His older brother was Cornelius II, who built The Breakers. Alva Vanderbilt was a leading hostess in Newport society, and envisioned Marble House as her "temple to the arts" in America. The house was designed by the architect Richard Morris Hunt, inspired by the Petit Trianon at Versailles. The cost of the house was reported in contemporary press accounts to be $11 million, of which $7 million was spent on 500,000 cubic feet of marble. Upon its completion, Mr. Vanderbilt gave the house to his wife as a 39th birthday present.
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

I thought this one would be my favorite. Amazing to see the opulence and excess some families could indulge in. For me the beauty here was over-kill and I preferred the Elms or Breakers.

Thank Kalin F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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"alva vanderbilt"
in 98 reviews
"audio tour"
in 204 reviews
"her daughter"
in 33 reviews
"gothic room"
in 26 reviews
"women's rights"
in 14 reviews
"gilded age"
in 95 reviews
"own pace"
in 80 reviews
"my favorite"
in 57 reviews
"over the top"
in 54 reviews
"beautiful mansion"
in 47 reviews
"summer cottage"
in 36 reviews
"dining room"
in 22 reviews
"newport mansions"
in 53 reviews
"preservation society"
in 39 reviews
"the kitchen"
in 20 reviews
"interesting history"
in 18 reviews
"take your time"
in 14 reviews

16 - 20 of 1,436 reviews

Reviewed 3 weeks ago

If you can only see a few mansions, I would put this one on the list. Another amazing home that you will not be able to see anywhere else.

Thank seunghyeh2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

The Breakers is spectacular, but this is my favorite house. This was the childhood summer home of Consuelo Vanderbilt who married the Duke of Marlborough and went to live at Blenheim Palace in England. Her mother dominated her and contrived to have her marry a titled British lord, even though she loved someone else whom she met in Newport. The Duke came to Newport to court her. Just looking at the childhood bedroom of Consuelo with its dark red damask walls and heavy Tudor-style bed was fascinating--so inappropriate for a young girl, even in the Victorian period and tells you a lot about her mother! Read Consuelo's memoir, the Glitter and the Gold, written in the 1950s before you go. There is also an excellent biography called Alva and Consuelo Vanderbilt by Amanda Stuart which gives a sense of their celebrity status and the people behind the house. By today's taste, the house is over the-top, but it is still great to tour. The Chinese tea house was the site of suffragette meetings in the early 1900s. If you could only visit two houses, I would pick this one and either the Breakers or the Elms. You can buy your ticket and print it at home through the Newport Preservation Society. There is also a discount for a two-house ticket or a five-house ticket. If you are visiting without a car, the RITA public trolley offers a $6 hop on hop off ticket that goes up Bellevue where all the houses are located. Tickets can be purchased at the Visitor's Center on America's Cup Avenue next tot he Marriott.

1  Thank TorontoLal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

This was my favorite mansion tour. The history and the way these people lived is so incredible. Be sure to follow up this tour at Belcourt to see where Ms Vanderbilt moved to after she divorced her husband

Thank TCM327
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Yes, it is expensive. It was nice. The self guided audio was good as we could go at our own pace. Definitely see the Breakers, if you have time come to this one and others. I was with an 8, 13 and 14 year old and they liked it. You can buy packages that include multiple houses. Once you do a couple and you hear the audio of each you get an idea of the whole history of it. No issues with parking.

Thank iamafairadvisor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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