There are very few good things to come out of the global COVID 19 pandemic, but one of them is definitely the creativity that bars and restaurants have shown in adjusting to the situation and finding ways to still offer a safe, fun, and entertaining experience for their guests. As the weather has gotten colder here in Rhode Island, places have had to reimagine outdoor dining and find ways to warm it up for those less-hearty New Englanders who’d much prefer to be cozy and indoors somewhere. Newport has some great options for dining outdoors this winter, including fire pits, igloos, and more. Here are some places to visit – just don’t forget your scarf!
Gurneys Newport Resort & Marina
One of the best places in Newport to watch the sunset, this magnificent resort is now offering a personal igloo dining experience on their Lounge and Firepit Deck. The igloos are heated and can fit up to four people. They are now taking reservations through March 2021 for two-hour windows – just be aware, there are food and beverage minimums depending on the time and day you book for. For added safety, all igloos are disinfected between every visit with M.I.S.T. Fogger & Disinfection solution, which is both hospital-grade and NSF-certified. Before or after your igloo experience, you can also linger by the firepits and warm up a bit the “old-fashioned” way. Grab a hot drink and get a seat close to the flames and you’ll be toasty in no time!
Malt on Broadway
Thai Shrimp Nachos in an igloo? Yes, please! This family-owned local favorite spot recently added igloos in front of their establishment, courtesy of Ocean State Shields. Make a reservation to dine-in one of these charming, heated igloos complete with heated seats, beneath the café lights of cobblestoned Broadway.
A summertime favorite has now majorly upgraded its outdoor patio to be an all-weather destination. This prime-people watching spot located in the center of the action on Bannister’s Wharf, is now fully-equipped with heaters and a tent, to make your chowder eating, and Dark and Stormy sipping all the more cozy.
Another place with a popular outdoor patio that normally only functions in the warmer months, but thanks to a little ingenuity, can now be used all winter – weather permitting. This Newport staple and classic Irish pub now have winter pop-up tents on their Thames Street patio, as well as heaters for added warmth. They are also participating in the Rhode Island Hospitality Association’s #BYOBlanket campaign, encouraging patrons to continue dining outdoors all winter long and to bring their own blankets along to keep toasty!
Whether it’s their decadent breakfast, their unique pizzas, or their gourmet dinner specials, this quaint café is among the several Broadway establishments that have brought the cozy outdoors this winter. With the addition of “an army” of heat lamps and new barricades, diners can now enjoy their meals outdoors, along with a warm hot drink or an alcoholic beverage of your choice, as this place is one of Newport’s favorite BYOB spots. Pro-tip: hit up Rex’s Liquor Store just down the block for your favorite libation before heading over.