We don’t live too far away and often spend weekends in Newport during the off-season. My D’s best friend is a sophomore there and I’m friends with a graduate from the 90s. I did spend a weekend on campus for guidance counselors and other professionals who work with high school aged students. The dorm we stayed in was cute with sleeping loft. My D said that isn’t what most look like though. The admissions center is on a cliff overlooking the bay. Absolutely gorgeous.
The school is pretty spread out, not a contained campus. The town is within walking distance (and Ubers are everywhere) and is a nice walking/shopping/eating town with ocean and bay views and lots of marinas and sailboats. Everything on the water side of the street is $$$. The further you get away the less $$ everything becomes obv. There is a nice state park, a small casino, two cinemas…
We went to the Firehouse for a NYE comedy show. The place was BYOB and only $20. I highly recommend it to anyone who is in Newport for a few nights, lots of fun.
As for the beaches, IMHO, they are just mediocre. Much nicer beaches 1/2 hour away. Great place for sunset cruises and that sort of thing though.