Though the region is known for inspired citizens, you may be hard pressed to find a more ambitious, creative and ingenious person than Libby Kirwin along the East Coast.
Born and raised in Newport, Rhode Island, Libby left home to follow her creative passions, and follow them she did. After graduating from the venerated Massachusetts College of Art, she set out into the world, Graphic Design degree in hand. Little did even she know what grand things were on her horizon.
With the spirit of wanderlust filling her sails, Libby ventured along several career paths that afforded her the opportunity to travel some of the most beautiful places on the globe, including the Caribbean, Florida coast and of course, New England. Along the way, Libby acquired and then expounded upon the wisdom that she took in, priming her for the launch of her own venture, Jack and Josie’s Coffee Lounge in Newport, Rhode Island. Her first foray into entrepreneurship was met with great success, but bigger things were calling.
Photo Credit: Libby Kirwin Real Estate
In 2009, Libby launched Libby Kirwin Property Management and Libby Kirwin Real Estate. Melding the positive experiences and wisdom that she’d earned from her past positions, Kirwin was determined to infuse the industry with her fresh and modern take. Today her boutique approach to real estate has morphed into a virtual empire with a host of divisions that have a cult following of customers and clients seeking out the Libby Kirwin lifestyle.
The elite of the elite from across the globe jet to Libby’s exclusive luxe division, where they can find properties of the highest order within Libby’s plethora of real estate offerings, as well as yacht rentals and personal consulting services.
Libby now oversees all aspects of her corporation and jettisons frequently between her Newport home and Boston. She sat down with Nasrine Abushakra to provide exclusive insight on her favorite places in both locations and urges Bostonians to make the day-trip to her hometown to discover the hautest of haunts.
Libby Kirwin: Newport & Boston Can’t Miss Locations:
How often do visit Boston? What brings you into Boston when you visit?
I visit Boston at least one a month. I love having my dose of city life and visit all my long lost Bean Town buddies. I always stop to see my friends at Neptune Oyster and get in all my shopping.
You mentioned Newport being a fun day trip…what is your favorite means of transportation between the two towns?
If I have time, I keep things old school and hop on the bus. Otherwise, I don’t mind splurging on uber! Uber is in Newport now…we are ‘big league’.
I noticed that you just launched a line of natural mists. It seems like you’re always full of great ideas. It’s often said that an entrepreneur has a spirit that drives them from an early age. When you were young, what did you see yourself doing as an adult? Did you always think that you’d be the founder of a business, or did you have other aspirations?
I never liked being child. I couldn’t wait to be adult so I could be in charge…make all my own decisions. Graphic design + visual art has always been a passion. I am a visual person. I love to draw, create and collect. The Natural Mists came from the idea of memory…and I wanted to capitalize on positive energy and good smelling homes.
Though it doesn’t seem like you have much of it, what are some of your favorite things to do in your down time?
I love yoga but I have started a new hobby of target shooting with my husband. It uses all of my focus and helps me stream line my thoughts. I never saw myself doing this, but I love spending time with my husband and having him challenge me.
Favorite quote or line?
I always pull something from my favorite book, “7 Habits of Highly Effective People” by Stephen Covey… but today I have been really touched by this… “The ability to observe without evaluating is the highest form of intelligence.” – Krishnamurti
Any particular causes that you’d like to mention in the feature?
Myself and my entire real estate team are strong supporter of local business and anyone of need. Keeping it local is the best thing anyone can do.
Boston: My favorite restaurant WAS Caio Bella, no longer there. My favorite place to visit in Boston is the Neptune Oyster. A friend of mine owns it + I love watching her business flourish.
Newport: When I am in Newport, my ALL TIME FAVORITE is Clarke Cooke House. It’s quintessential seaside fine dining.
Boston: I visited Fin’s Sushi Bar once and it was extremely perfect.
Newport: Second time using this answer, but it has to be the Clarke Cooke House. They have sushi bar called “The Candy Store” and the menu changes every season. To, die, for!
Boston: Toscano on Charles Street
Newport: Mamma Luisa’s is hands down the best Italian in Newport. So old school.
Boston: I am a big believer in “treat the sweet and then walk it off”…so desserts require an after-snack walk. The Truffles Fine Confection shop is a great place to grab a find treat and walk through town.
Newport: In Newport, Kilwins Peanut Butter Ice cream is a little scoop of heaven.
Best place for a romantic date?
Boston: For a first date, a walk throughout Boston’s Public Garden…if you end up holding hands, it’s time for a second date.
Newport: A walk through Bowens Wharf, some clam chowder and sitting on the lounge chairs at the end of the docks.
Best Sunday brunch?
Boston: Four Seasons Boston in the Bristol Lounge
Newport: Stoneacre Pantry
Best place for a power business meeting?
Boston: Four Seasons Boston in the Bristol Lounge
Newport: 41 North
If you have out of town guests, which hotel would you recommend?
Boston: XV Beacon Hotel
Newport: The Chanler
Favorite shopping venue/boutique?
Boston: Newbury Street
Newport: Bellevue Avenue has really diversified their shopping experience!
Favorite Cultural Event?
Boston: Anything at the Hatch Shell!
Newport: Our Folk and Jazz Festivals are monumental.
Boston: Capital Grill
Newport: 22 Bowens
Boston: Figs Pizza
Newport: Crazy Dough
Best Gym/Athletic Facility?
Boston: Healthworks Fitness Center for Women
Newport: Newport Power Yoga
Describe your city in three words?
Boston: Accessible, Exciting, Cozy
Newport: Life, Family, Charming
Favorite historic/legendary place to see or explore?
Boston: The Freedom Trail, Boston Public Library, The Public Garden
Newport: Fort Adams, Redwood library
All-around favorite spot?
Boston: Commonwealth Avenue Mall is such a Boston staple.
Newport: Cliff Walk, a perfect balance of fresh air and Newport architecture.
Best Aspect of Boston?
Boston has become so user friendly and accessible. I love being able to travel back and forth from Boston in under an hour!