NEMA Museums New England

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Museum Profile

The Breakers

44 Ochre Point Avenue, Newport, RI 02840

The Breakers is the grandest of Newport's summer "cottages" and a symbol of the Vanderbilt family's social and financial preeminence in turn of the century America. Completed in 1895, the 70-room summer estate of Cornelius Vanderbilt II was built by architect Richard Morris Hunt, inspired by 16th century Italian palaces. Allard and Sons of Paris assisted Hunt with furnishings and fixtures, Austro-American sculptor Karl Bitter designed relief sculpture, and Boston architect Ogden Codman decorated the family quarters. The Breakers includes a two and a half story high Great Hall, and a Morning Room adorned with platinum leaf wall panels. Its interiors feature rare marble, alabaster, and gilded woods. The Breakers is a National Historic Landmark.