The Sea Breeze Inn hosted a grand opening of their newly built boutique hotel on Tuesday, June 27th from 2 pm to 5 pm.

Located at 147 Aquidneck Avenue in Middletown, the hotel features 16 professionally designed guestrooms and suites with ocean views, along with a 30 seat full-service café named Yia Yia’s Café

“After years of planning, design, and construction we are excited to open our new boutique hotel and once again welcome guests to the Newport area,” said Leeza Amarant, owner and operator of the hotel, in a news release. “We truly look forward to offering top-quality accommodations along with our signature personal touch to travelers from around the world.”

The Sea Breeze Inn started as a small ice cream parlor in 1991 by husband and wife team Telly and Leeza Amarant. In 1995 the Amarant’s expanded the site into an 8-room Bed and Breakfast with a cafe. In late 2015 the building was completely razed to begin construction of the new hotel.

Rooms boast private balconies with views of the beach and pond, each individually designed with unique features and accents.

“Since we opened the original Inn we’ve had the opportunity to host and meet amazing people from across the globe and we’ve been very fortunate to have many of our guests return to stay with us year after year,” said Telly Amarant who oversaw construction on the hotel in the release. “The facility was growing old and dated it was time for an update. Our focus with this project was to start from scratch and create a space that compliments the unique style of Newport Rhode Island. We’re confident that our guests will enjoy the improvements we’ve made.”

Telly and Leeza Amarant worked with an area architect and interior designer on the development of the new hotel. The building was designed by local architect Dan Herchenroether of HerkWorks and the interiors throughout the hotel were carefully crafted by Boston-based designer Misty Gray of Grayscale Designs.

Architect Dan Herchenroether worked to create a unique feel for each custom designed room, cleverly constructing individual spaces with an open aesthetic that celebrates expansive water views. Dan Herchenroether, “The redesigned Sea Breeze Inn celebrates the best of New England vernacular architecture with large roof overhangs, clean lines, intimate private balconies and a welcoming entrance sequence. The building was reconfigured to account for proper egress stairs with expansion along the street edge to improve curb appeal. It is truly an asset to the budding Aquidneck Avenue streetscape.”

Designer Misty Gray stated, “We wanted to take this opportunity to celebrate the roots of the Amarant family, who emigrated from Greece in 1971, and bring Newport a taste of the Mediterranean with a modern, subtle approach. With each design decision, we collaborated with Leeza and Telly to ensure we created a space that was authentic and uniquely theirs.”

Amenities at the hotel include complimentary made-to-order breakfast; a full-service café where breakfast and lunch are served daily; private balconies; LED TV’s with 50+ channels; desks in each room; an elevator; free WiFi; and free plug-in Ethernet in each room.

Yia Yia’s Café, the on-site restaurant where they serve breakfast and lunch every day from 8 am 8am to 6 pm. The cafe is open to the public but if you are staying at the hotel then a full, made-to-order breakfast is always included with your stay. Menu items include traditional breakfast and lunch options including pancakes, eggs, sanwiches and muffins. Yia Yia’s also offers authentic Greek dishes and desserts.

Yia Yia’s Café
Yia Yia’s Café

“We are thrilled to re-open and we hope our guests will be happy with what we’ve created,” said Leeza Amarant. “We will continue to operate the hotel as we always have, treating all of our guests just as we would family, and we look forward to beginning the next chapter of the Sea Breeze Inn.”

For more information and reservations, visit

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Ryan Belmore has been the Owner & Publisher of What's Up Newp since 2012. He also currently works for Mountain News, where he serves as Senior Editor - North America for OnTheSnow. He previously worked for the New England Patriots and American Cancer Society. He currently serves as Vice President of Fort Adams Trust and is a member of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers and North American Snowsports Journalists Association (NASJA).