The Ocean House in Watch Hill, Rhode Island

Being a travel agent and living in Connecticut, most trips out of town find me on the road to JFK to board a flight to far-flung locales.  Very often I am asked where my favorite places to go are and what are my favorite hotels.  One of my best kept secrets is the Ocean House in Rhode Island.  It is a mere hour and a half from my home and I love it there

The Ocean House opened in 1868 and for 135 years it operated as a playground to many distinguished guests.  In 2003 after falling into serious disrepair, it sadly closed its doors.  In 2010 after a complete tear down and rebuild, this yellow grand dame on the ocean reopened her doors.  The new resort offers 49 rooms and 13 suites and its original integrity was maintained by salvaging over 5,000 artifacts including the fireplace in the main lobby where each stone was kept and numbered so it could be rebuilt in its original location to perfection.

I love everything about this seaside hotel.  The soothing décor it simply classic and the color palate soothes the weary traveler.  The lobby is a feast for the senses and it is not uncommon to find a piano player or a harpist playing throughout the day.

The rooms here are incredibly beautiful.  I cannot imagine checking into a hotel on the ocean without having a view of it and so for our most recent trip we opted for a Deluxe Guest Room with a terrace and water views.

And of course…The View!

There is nothing more lovely than enjoying breakfast out on that terrace or a glass or wine at the end of the day hearing the waves lap the shore.

In all, there are four actual dining options in addition to in room dining.  Season’s restaurant serves wonderful American continental cuisine.  Head’s up!  You do need a reservation here even if you are staying on property.  When booking my clients here I always make their reservations in advance.  The restaurant, which serves breakfast lunch and dinner, is wildly popular with the locals.  Though guests are given priority, reservations can be hard to come by.  The Verandah flanks the side of the building and is lovely albeit does not have direct ocean view.  Here they serve casual fare, cocktails and a wonderful raw bar.  The Seaside Terrace serves a casual lunch and has a commanding view of the Ocean.  If heading down to the beach (access is granted only to guests of the hotel) lovely beach service and yet more casual food is served at Dune Cottage.

My favorite meal of all is the Sunday Jazz Brunch!  It’s worth the ride up (with a reservation!) just for the day for this meal!  $54 per person will get you unlimited sparkling wine, classic breakfast and lunch items, plus a buffet, a raw bar, a house-made pastry and dessert display, and a selection of local artisanal cheeses and charcuterie. There is even a crepe station with fillings of the guests’ choice. Sparkling wine, all of the delicious food you can handle and a musician performing a combination of jazz, blues, and soul each Sunday in the lobby.  This is a must!

Who should go here?

Better question…who should not?  Can’t think of a person who wouldn’t delight in The Ocean House for a night or two or three!

When to go?

Summer is an obvious choice to enjoy the beach.  However, for a romantic getaway, I think the Fall or even Winter could be incredible!  Fires blazing in the fireplaces, candles lit, guest enjoying complimentary mulled cider in the Living Room in the lobby.  Divine!

Why book through Kelly Millington Travel?

Easy!  If you are booking on your own, you are leaving value on the table!  On behalf of Virtuoso, I’m pleased to offer my clients the following amenities:

  • Upgrade on arrival, subject to availability
  • Complimentary Continental breakfast daily for up to two in-room guests, served in Seasons Restaurant
  • A US $100 Food & Beverage credit, once per stay

Please contact me at 203.258.9489 or at when you are ready to book this exquisite seaside resort!