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Address: Bellevue Avenue, Newport, RI 02840
Phone Number:
+1 401-847-1000

The Isaac Bell House is one of the best surviving examples of shingle style...

The Isaac Bell House is one of the best surviving examples of shingle style architecture in the country. The house was designed by the firm of McKim, Mead and White in 1883 for Isaac Bell, a wealthy cotton broker and investor. After passing through a succession of owners, the Isaac Bell House was purchased by the Preservation Society in 1996, and is today designated a National Historic Landmark. The Isaac Bell House was remarkably innovative when it appeared in 1883. It is a combination of Old English and European architecture with colonial American and exotic details, such as a Japanese-inspired open floor plan and bamboo-style porch columns.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 55 reviews
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  • 35
  • 14
    Very good
  • 5
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different style house to visit, more arts and crafts oriented.

we enjoyed a great tour of this house, it is not on the water and is more Arts and Crafts in style and furnishings..the house is a little dark but that was the style back then..if... read more

Reviewed 4 weeks ago
shelley b
Santa Barbara, California
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55 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 55: English reviews
Santa Barbara, California
Level Contributor
81 reviews
23 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 63 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 weeks ago

we enjoyed a great tour of this house, it is not on the water and is more Arts and Crafts in style and furnishings..the house is a little dark but that was the style back then..if you are interested in that style , this is a good place to visit.

Thank shelley b
Level Contributor
6 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 16 February 2017

Unlike all the rest of the home tours in Newport, Isaac Bell is an architectural tour, rather than a history of the family/seeing the furniture the way it was set, etc. The tour guides are kind and very knowledgeable, it's worth going at least once to see the way they've restored the structure after years of neglect.

1 Thank NikNak119
Boston, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
9 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 27 January 2017

This house isn't about fancy furniture. It's actually empty. It's a tour all about the beautiful articture of the building. Very interesting.

Thank 07bahamabeach
Level Contributor
8 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 13 November 2016

We studied this building when I was an architecture student at Cornell. Although we visited Newport, the Bell House was a private home back in the 80's so we where only able to view it from the street. Although small and modest by newport standards its of architectural significance, very glad its open to the public now.

Thank daniel s
Level Contributor
16 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 November 2016

This mansion tour is unusual because it showcases the house while it's being refurbished. You get to see the house largely empty and down to the bare studs and flooring. Still interesting.

Thank Amy F
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
36 reviews
19 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 October 2016

This open floor plan house built by McKim, Mead & White differs greatly from the rest of the houses in Newport. Taking inspiration from Japanese architecture, the Isaac Bell House is a departure from other houses on the Newport Mansions trail. While it is still a restoration in progress, and mostly unfurnished, the Stanford White design inspired the next generation... More 

1 Thank Peter K
Hudson, New Hampshire
Level Contributor
174 reviews
53 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 October 2016

I was pleasantly surprised by how different this house is from the other mansions. The house is mostly unfurnished, which allows visitors to see the beauty and creative style of the original structure. I also enjoyed hearing the history of the house and the people who lived in it. I think that, of all the houses, this one sparked my... More 

1 Thank Kgirl00
Sacramento, California
Level Contributor
26 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 October 2016

There's a great back-story to the Bell House that makes it worth visiting if you're doing several tours. Unlike most tours, it's almost vacant of furnishings, but the architectural details make it a fun tour, and it's probably the least crowded of all the homes.

Thank Demar H
Newport, Rhode Island
Level Contributor
52 reviews
35 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 September 2016

It does not have gold and marble and collections. That is the good news. Instead, there are 5 different shingle styles, big porches including a sleeping porch upstairs. As the rooms, except for the dining room, are uncluttered with furniture, you can explore to your heart's content. It is difficult to pick a favorite room but walking down the stairs... More 

Thank Connie B
Dagsboro, Delaware
Level Contributor
221 reviews
83 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 173 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 September 2016

This is possibly the least visited Newport Mansion since it does not have the over-the-top opulence of the others but this one has historic, architectural significance overshadowing its more showy neighbors. This particular house introduces the "shingle style" to American architecture and our guide was a retired architect who described its design features with authority, detail, and respect bordering on... More 

Thank Ted S

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