NRF promotes and invests in the architectural heritage of the Newport community, the traditional building trades, and Doris Duke’s fine and decorative arts collections, for the enjoyment, education and inspiration of all.
As a leader in the preservation of early American architecture, NRF supports research and education in areas directly related to its collections and issues of critical concern to the field of historic preservation.
Visit Doris Duke’s art-filled mansion and enjoy panoramic ocean views from the extensive grounds. Open late March to November.
The Vernon House is a site for expansive story-telling, contemporary dialogue, and preservation trades skill-building.
Newport Restoration Foundation holds one of the largest collections of period architecture owned by a single organization anywhere in the United States.
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The Newport Restoration Foundation (NRF) is announcing that Newport County residents are now able to visit Rough Point Museum free of charge. NRF is in the process of reimagining the Rough Point Museum as a community space and is utilizing previously inaccessible and underutilized spaces to make the museum more welcoming. Part of this strategy of accessibility includes removing barriers to access like the admission fee for Newport County residents.
“In a move toward developing a deeper community relationship as an asset to Newport County, admission to Rough Point Museum is now free for all Newport County residents,” said NRF President Frankie Vagnone. “With interactive visitor engagement, the new Newport Galleries of Art, Craft, and Design, along with the establishment and expansion of the new ‘Telling Stories’ initiative, the Newport Restoration Foundation is re-envisioning our purpose and expanding our commitment to the community.”
Visitors to Rough Point Museum can engage with the life and legacy of NRF founder Doris Duke through a variety of experiences—including an interactive self-guided tour available through the Newport Restoration Foundation app. While exploring the house, visitors can learn more about the rooms, collections, and people of Rough Point, watch behind-the-scenes videos related to the caretaking of the museum and the objects, virtually step inside spaces not on the tour path, and encounter special object highlights.
The announcement of free admission to Rough Point Museum for Newport County residents caps off a landmark year for NRF. Milestones include the introduction of 3D printed reproduction artifacts, hands-on engagement, video kiosks, and the opening of the west wing of Rough Point for dedicated galleries to display the collection of Newport furniture & decorative arts first envisioned by Doris Duke. This year also saw the reopening of Vernon House at 46 Clarke Street for “GAMES, GAMBLERS & CARTOMANCERS: The New Cardsharps”, an innovative art exhibition in partnership with Art & Newport which juxtaposed contemporary art, conversation, and thought with the rich historic setting and stories of Vernon House. Admission to this exhibition was also free, allowing over 1700 visitors to experience Vernon House, nearly one-third of whom were Newport County residents.
NRF is committed to using spaces like Rough Point Museum and Vernon House as settings for the public to gather and encounter new ideas, stories, and experiences that reflect Newport and its multitude of communities. With Rough Point Museum now accessible at no cost to Newport County residents, NRF seeks to engage with the Newport community in a new way.
To be admitted, Newport County residents will simply need to show proof of address at the museum entrance. Rough Point Museum is open Tuesday through Friday from 10am to 4pm, and Saturday and Sunday from 10am to 5pm.
About the Newport Restoration Foundation
The Newport Restoration Foundation (NRF) is a non-profit organization established by philanthropist Doris Duke in 1968 to preserve the architectural and cultural heritage of 18th and 19th century Newport. NRF promotes economic and community restoration through historic preservation initiatives like Keeping History Above Water, which addresses the impact of sea-level rise on the built environment in the wake of climate change, and the Historic Trades Initiative, which harnesses the knowledge of local specialists to train the next generation of preservation craftspeople. In addition to a collection of more than 70 colonial houses, now rented to tenant stewards, NRF operates properties that are open to the public —including Rough Point, the Newport home of Doris Duke, and The Vernon House, a site of expansive storytelling, contemporary dialogue, and preservation trades skill-building.
NRF is on Facebook /NPTRestoration and Instagram @NPTRestoration. Visit newportrestoration.org for more information.