Tennis Tournament Tourism: Get Swept Away on the Rhode Island Shore

In the seaside city of Newport, Rhode Island, visitors will find rustic delights, from dairy and flower farms to Gilded Age mansions and lighthouses. But from July 5-13, they’ll also find several of the ATP’s top pros, some fresh off Wimbledon’s lawns, competing for the Hall of Fame Tennis Championships title on some of New England’s most famous grass courts. The draw includes top American player John Isner and defending champ Nicolas Mahut, who won their first rounds yesterday, along with two-time grand slam winner Lleyton Hewitt, who prevailed over no. 144 Ryan Harrison after losing the first set 6-1.

Beyond the fun surrounding the tournament — from a runway show and champagne brunch to a tennis clinic with Nick Bollettieri for ages 50 plus — there’s plenty more for fans to do in Newport. Travel back in time to the late 19th century in this East Coast hideaway, and spend lazy summer days at the Hall of Fame’s grounds and quiet evenings at Newport’s gracious inns and estates.


Where to stay

Located on the downtown bayfront, The Francis Malbone House is Newport’s only five star bed and breakfast. Looking for luxury? Look no further than Malbone’s Counting House Suite, which was established in 1850. Amenities include a king-size canopy bed, double jacuzzi, fireplace and private entrance.

In the historic district you’ll also find the opulent Cliffside Inn, a renovated Victorian mansion by the sea. Enjoy the inn’s verandas, stone pathways and gardens in between watching Isner and Kyrgios.


What to do

Some of Newport’s top attractions include its historic homes. Since you’ll want to stay in one however, we’ve got some other sites you need to see while there. For art lovers, the National Inn of American Illustration is home to works by such artists as Norman Rockwell and “Father of American Illustration” Howard Pyle, while the Newport Art Museum is currently exhibiting a collection of landscape paintings by Corrine Colarusso called “Magic Gold, Full Sun.”

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For those who want to stay outdoors, there are a number of vineyards with tours in the area. Check out Carolyn’s Sakonnet Vineyards and enjoy live music as part of its summer concert series or try Greenvale Vineyards on Saturday afternoons for jazz and wine tastings.


What to eat

For fine dining in Newport venture to Restaurant Bouchard, where the menu includes dishes like stuffed roasted lobster and and slow-poached salmon. Business casual attire is required and no children under 7 are permitted, so you can be sure you’ll enjoy a classy, quiet evening. For more casual eats try Mission, where you can’t go wrong with either a house-ground hamburger or hotdog. Enjoy the restaurant’s special “mission sauce,” made up of aioli, ketchup, cornichons, capers, herbs and brandy.

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With all that that Newport has to offer, it’s definitely worth the trip to watch some of tennis’ brightest stars and enjoy a mini mid-summer vacation.  



I grew up in a tennis family with three younger sisters as doubles partners. If you enjoyed a blog post of mine or want to know more, feel free to email me at Thanks for reading and staying connected with MyTennisLessons!
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