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America's Most Romantic Hotels

America's most romantic hotels: Forty 1 North

Malu Alvarez

Forty 1° North, Newport, RI

Who ordered the room party? Instead of a mini-bar, there’s a six-foot-long wet bar, with enough liquor bottles to slake a serious thirst. It would be easy to choose from among the monochromatic books (curiously all bound in blue), take to the big bed with its view of a spare winter waterfront, and forget why people come to Newport in warmer weather. It’s almost counterintuitive in a city whose many boats burn exorbitant amounts of fossil fuels, but the contemporary Forty 1° North is impressively environmentally conscious. Newspapers are delivered via each room’s iPad, and the hallway’s big mirrors serve as eco-friendly message boards to announce activities such as yoga and cooking classes. Bathrooms are equipped with low-flow showerheads, chemical-free toiletries, and towels made from a superfine cotton that dries quickly, which encourages reuse rather than replacement. Okay, so the compact fluorescent bulbs require squinting to find your contact lenses, but it’s a small price to pay so that the polar ice caps don’t melt. The inn is only about a year old (with a staff that seems not much older). Other new kids on this block are Thames Street Kitchen and Tallulah on Thames, two restaurants with young tattooed chefs and farm-to-fork menus, but the locals line up for sweet-bread French toast at the Corner Café (made not from calf’s innards but from the Portuguese version of challah). The Newport Winter Festival takes over the town from February 17 to 26, with ice sculpting, beach polo, and a chili cook-off. The International Tennis Hall of Fame & Museum is open year-round (the Williams sisters have nothing on Gertrude “Gorgeous Gussie” Moran, whose lace-trimmed knickers at Wimbledon prompted a debate in Parliament). If the weather is mild, you could even bundle up for the glorious Cliff Walk along the water, channeling The French Lieutenant’s Woman. During the Colonial era, Newport was the world’s rum capital, with more than 20 distilleries, and Coastal Extreme Brewing Company still makes Thomas Tew rum, named for a famous 17th-century pirate. If that doesn’t warm you up, head for the Caribbean.

Price Tag: From $395.

—Aimee Lee Ball

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