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.
Tour Doris Duke’s art-filled mansion and enjoy panoramic ocean views from the extensive grounds, designed by Frederick Law Olmsted. Open April to November.
Experience the only museum in the world specializing in 18th-century Newport furniture and related decorative arts.
Explore 40 acres of open space, a tribute to the agrarian heritage of Aquidneck Island. The site is open daily from dawn to dusk for public enjoyment.
Newport Restoration Foundation holds one of the largest collections of period architecture owned by a single organization anywhere in the United States.
Celebrate excellence in historic preservation efforts within the City of Newport, Rhode Island.
Live amidst history by renting one of our many historic properties.
Help us to continue a lived-in legacy by making a contribution to our Annual Fund today.
Rough Point is a mansion and a museum with an extensive collection of fine and decorative arts and a sprawling historic landscape with panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean. The property is experienced today largely as it was lived in during the lifetime of its most famous owner, the heiress, philanthropist, and preservationist Doris Duke.
Interested in a shorter, self-directed visit to the museum or more time to see the special exhibitions? Self-guided Roam Around Rough Point hours offer visitors a chance to explore the house, galleries, and gardens at their own pace. Knowledgeable guides are on hand to answer questions and share their favorite stories.
Note: Rough Point will be closed for the 2018 tour season after Sunday, November 11 and will reopen for regular house tours on Tuesday, April 2, 2019.
Roam Around Rough Point Hours: Saturday & Wednesday
The museum is open for self-guided visits, Saturday from 3-5:00 and Wednesdays from 5-7:00. Please note that tickets will not be issued after 4:45 on Saturdays and 6:45 on Wednesdays.
Grounds Pass: Tuesday–Sunday
Explore the historic landscape and enjoy spectacular ocean views, between 9:30–5:00.
Children 12 & under: Free
All visitors: $5
For groups larger than 11 visitors, please visit our Group Tours page.
Guided tours introduce the singular personality of Doris Duke through the home she created, the art she collected, and the causes she embraced. The tour visits two floors of the house and special exhibition galleries. We invite you to explore the grounds on your own or join us for a guided garden tour.
Museum Tours: Tuesday-Sunday
75-minute tours depart every half hour, beginning at 9:30 and ending at 3:30. Last tour on Saturday is at 2:00 pm.
Garden Tours: Tuesday-Friday @ 2:00
30-minute tour of the historic gardens at Rough Point. Enjoy breathtaking ocean views as we talk about the transformation of the grounds over the seasons and how NRF’s celebrates Doris Duke’s interest in environmental conservation and sustainable horticulture. Weather permitting. Free with purchase of ticket.
Ages 13-18 & Students w/ ID: $10.00
Children 12 & under: Free
Tickets for all admissions available at the door; no advance reservation necessary.
For groups larger than 11 visitors,
please visit our Group Tours page.
680 Bellevue Avenue
Parking is available at the property. The estate is fully air-conditioned and wheelchair accessible.
Embroidered panel with the story of Esther
Series of Scipio tapestries
Portrait of Thomas Freeman, Jr., Esq. by Hoare
Pair of cloisonné candlesticks
Portrait of a Young Woman by Bol
Wingchairs in the William and Mary style
Roman general Scipio Africanus (larger figure in gold armor at the left) was a favorite example of mercy in warfare in Renaissance and Baroque art. During the siege of New Carthage, Scipio returned a beautiful female prisoner (possibly the figure seated at right) to her fiance. For this generous act he received a ransom (the gold vessels and armor shown here at the left), which he returned to the couple as a wedding present. In return, the families of the couple pledged their allegiance to Rome. There are three other tapestries in the Stair Hall from this set, which Doris Duke bought in 1958 for Rough Point.
This portrait originally hung in Batsford Park, the ancestral home of Thomas Freeman, Jr., Esq. (d. 1788), a member of British Parliament from Steyning in West Sussex. The artist, Prince Hoare, is not a household name by any means, partly because he left painting early on to pursue a career in literature and theatre criticism. He was, however, an accomplished painter and a good friend of Sir Joshua Reynolds who painted the Portrait of Mrs. Thomas Freeman, Jr. (1758-1782), which originally hung alongside the Rough Point painting. The pair were separated when the contents of Batsford Park were sold at auction in 1919. Doris Duke's father, James Buchanan Duke, bought the portrait from the dealer Knoedler & Co. in New York in November 1924.
Prominent in the decoration of these two large pricket style candlesticks (only one is shown here) are red bats confronting the Chinese shou character. Because the Chinese word for bat is pronounced the same way as the word for happiness, and red is the color of joy, red bats in Chinese art can be interpreted as symbols of happiness. Given her deep interest in and knowledge of Asian art, it's possible that this symbolism added to the appeal of the candlesticks when Doris Duke bought them at auction in New York in 1975.
Ferdinand Bol studied in Amsterdam with Rembrandt from 1636 to 1641 and later became one of the most successful portraitists in The Netherlands. The sitter of this portrait is unknown. Her fanciful costume differs considerably from the usual somber attire of the wealthy Dutch merchant class of the time and could signal that the subject is meant to be read as either a historical or biblical character or an allegorical figure. The abundance of pearl jewelry associates her, according to the symbolism of the day, with the virtue of purity and often can be found in portraits commemorating a betrothal or wedding. Doris Duke purchased the painting at auction in New York in 1971.
These four wingchairs were recently reupholstered, and when the old fabric was removed, our curator and conservator found a surprise. What were thought to be 19th- or early 20th-century reproductions of a distinct 17th-century style of armchair, turned out to be mid 20th-century copies that are so poorly constructed under the upholstery, they might have been intended as props for the stage or a movie set. Certainly they look great in and are appropriately scaled for the Great Hall at Rough Point, where they add a bit of whimsy and flair. Perhaps that is all that mattered to Doris Duke as well!