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Hot List 2011

Ocean House, Watch Hill, Rhode Island 
$$$$

1 Bluff Avenue

Watch Hill, Rhode Island 02891
United States

Tel: 401 584 7000

After a $140 million rebuild that meticulously replicates the original 1868 resort—right down to the painted yellow exterior, stone-by-stone reassemblage of the lobby fireplace, and all 247 windows placed precisely in their original positions—the Ocean House is that rare hotel hybrid that oozes Victorian-era elegance yet banishes any stuffiness thanks to up-to-the-minute mod cons and friendly yet professional service. Set on a bluff fronting a soft-sand beach in the heart of this tony resort town, the hotel is a poster child for New England gentility: A columned lobby with overstuffed couches features live piano music in the evening, and just off the lobby, wide verandas facing a croquet lawn are a comfortable spot for taking cocktails and afternoon tea. Its 49 guest rooms (down from the original hotel's 159) are bright and spacious with well-thought-out details such as dresser drawers that shut noiselessly, a TV perfectly positioned in front of the deep soaking tub, complimentary snacks and drinks from the minibar station, and a patio oriented toward the water. Seasons restaurant, which wraps around a show kitchen, specializes in farm-to-table dining, and during the summer months there are also clambakes on the beach. Other welcome extras are the free culinary and yoga classes, as well as virtual personal trainers in its well-equipped gym.
Which room to book: At 550 square feet, Bay View Deluxe and Ocean View Deluxe rooms are some of the largest non-suite rooms and are on the upper floors.
Information may have changed since date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.

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