Wednesday 9 March 2022
The Gilded Age – the new smash hit period drama written by Downton Abbey's Julian Fellowes – airs its season finale on 21 March. The series has won a legion of fans for its lavish depiction of high society during New York's Gilded Age in the late 1800s.
Fans of the show can get their own taste of the high life by visiting the genteel town of Newport, Rhode Island, where many of the era's wealthiest New York and Philadelphia residents kept holiday homes to which they would decamp for the summer season. Some were styled on royal palaces; others were modelled on French chateaux; but all were settings for lavish parties and (if the show is to be believed) dalliances and intrigue.
Many of these wonderfully opulent mansions still stand today. The Preservation Society of Newport has purchased 11 of them and thrown their doors open for the public to admire their glorious alabaster, polished wood, and marble interiors. At 70 rooms, The Breakers is perhaps the most famous of all, but Marble House (once owned by the Vanderbilts) and Rosecliff also merit inspection.
North America specialist Bon Voyage can arrange a half-day trolley tour of Newport's historic mansions (including admission to The Breakers) as part of its suggested, tailor-made New England Luxury Inns self-drive itinerary.
This 12-night tour starts in Boston before heading up to Portland, Maine and looping inland through New Hampshire's White Mountains and the Green Mountains of Vermont on the way back to the coast at Newport, finishing off with a visit to Cape Cod en route to Boston.Staying in luxury inns and charming B&B accommodation, throughout, this holiday costs from £2,575 pp and includes flights, car rental, accommodation, and the Newport mansions tour.
For more information and to book, call Bon Voyage on 0800 316 0194 or visit