Chateau-sur-Mer is the first of the grand Bellevue Avenue mansions of the Gilded Age in Newport, Rhode Island. Located at 424 Bellevue Avenue, it is now owned by the Preservation Society of Newport County, and is open to the public as a museum. Chateau-sur-Mer's grand scale and lavish parties ushered in the Gilded Age of Newport, as it was the most palatial residence in Newport until the Vanderbilt houses in the 1890s. It was designated a National Historic Landmark in 2006.Use our Newport online trip maker to visit Chateau-sur-Mer on your trip to Newport, and learn what else travelers and our writers recommend seeing nearby.
Chateau-sur-Mer was completed in 1852 as an Italianate villa for William Shepard Wetmore, a merchant in the China trade, who was born on January 26, 1801, in St. Albans, Vermont. The architect and builder was Seth C. Bradford; the structure is a landmark of Victorian architecture, furniture, wallpapers, ceramics and stenciling. Mr. Wetmore died on June 16, 1862, at Chateau-sur-Mer, leaving the bulk of his fortune to his son, George Peabody Wetmore. George later married Edith Keteltas in 1869. During the 1870s, the Wetmores departed on an extended trip to Europe, leaving architect Richard Morris Hunt to remodel and redecorate the house in the French Second Empire style. As a result, Chateau-sur-Mer displays most of the major design trends of the last half of the 19th century. The house is constructed of Fall River Granite. Hunt's alterations greatly expanded the house, adding a new three-story wing, a porte-cochere, and a projecting four-story tower with mansard roof. The carriage house was also enlarged, in a manner sympathetic to Bradford's original design. Hunt also designed the entrance gate of the estate, which is somewhat Greek Revival in style, but with posts modeled after Egyptian obelisks.
Chateau sur Mer was designed and originally built nearly half a century earlier than Marble Houze and the Breakers. As such, it lacks the over the top opulence of the latter two properties. It is stil... more »
Chateau-sur-Mer is a pre-Gilded Age mansion on Bellevue Avenue. It's filled with amazing hand carved wooden ceilings, bookcases (from Italy), beautiful furniture, and incredible architecture. It's a m... more »
Absolutely stunning inside. Enjoyed the guided tour very much. Luckily for us, it wasn't packed with tourists since it's still early in the season. No flash photography which was fine since my Samsung S8 adapts incredibly well in the dark. Parking lot can was full and there werent many people on the tours so beware.
Great time always. Fascinating on how the rich and famous lived back then.
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