Boston is a town of dualities. It has fully embraced all things modern without letting go of its colonial past. Modern skyscrapers are nestled next to historic hotels, while rich marketplaces line the cobblestone streets. Boston – or Beantown – has all that beautiful New England charm without sacrificing the luxury of technology.
Shop For The High-End And Handmade
Again, Boston shows its duality not just with its combination of the old with the new, but with its shopping choices. The city effortlessly manages to blend high-end fashion with handmade New England crafts.
For those looking for high fashion, Boston has a whole slew of big names on offer. From Chanel to Giorgio Armani, there are plenty of boutiques with window displays that are sure to grind any fashionista to a screeching halt. When it comes to high fashion, head to Back Bay or the nearby Beacon Hill districts. These are two of the most expensive neighbourhoods in Boston that are particularly famous for their Victorian Brownstone homes and the city's tallest skyscrapers. However, nestled between those historic homes and tall office buildings are the most eclectic fashion stores.
For those that are looking for something handcrafted or antique, it is best to head down to the Cambridge District, which is home to not only the prestigious Harvard University, but also M.I.T. There visitors will find stores like Cambridge Artists' Cooperative or Concepts, which serve up handmade sculpture, artwork and leather goods that cannot be found anywhere else in the world.
For those looking for something old in Boston, the Cambridge Antique Market is the place to go. This beautiful old building has five floors of old stuff within it. It specializes in 19th century treasures, but you never know what you might find inside.
For the intellectual, a visit to the Harvard Bookstore cannot be missed. The scholarly community is well served here with new titles upstairs and the old books downstairs. The staff also know where to get first editions.
The Green Tea Party Experience
Have a serious need to get pampered? The high-end G2O Spa + Salon is Boston's premiere spa. Located on the stylish Newbery Street, travellers are treated to a variety of massages, facials and aromatherapy and beauty treatments. However, the G2O Spa + Salon recently rolled out its newest treatment to pay homage to Boston's unique history. It was here where colonists protested British tariffs and taxes by holding the Boston Tea Party and dumping shipments of tea into the bay. Now the G20 Spa + Salon is holding a tea party of its own – a green tea party anyway. Visitors who sign on for the Boston Tea Party Experience can expect to be pampered with green tea- infused pedicures, manicures and body scrubs.
The 40-minute treatment begins with visitors self applying a green tea enhanced cream masque to soften and moisturize skin followed by a self exfoliation with a green tea scrub. All of this is done while enjoying the benefits of a wonderful herbal infused steam. This revitalizing service is finished up with a cooling mist to close the pores and a tropical shower before receiving a green tea infused manicure and pedicure. This spa treatment can also include a full-body exfoliation, Swiss shower and full body hydration.
Limousine Wine Tasting Tour
Massachusetts has an ever-growing wine scene that is slowly beginning to rival more popular locations like the Finger Lakes in New York or the wine country in California. This up and coming wine scene should not be missed, but luckily many of the locally produced Massachusetts wines make their way to Boston’s tasting rooms.
However, why walk to or take a taxi to these different tasting rooms when you can ride in style? Russo Limousines specializes in chauffeuring its discerning clientele to the various tasting rooms around town in luxurious limousines. These tours include stops at Baaco's Wine + Cheese, Bauer Wine, the Central Bottle and the Wine Bottega, before culminating at the award winning Boston Winery.
Legal Harborside is a Boston waterfront establishment that is unlike any seafood restaurant you have ever been to. This three floor restaurant has a different experience on each level. The first floor is a fish market with picnic tables. Depending on when visitors arrive, they can enjoy a fresh New England style seafood menu while watching the fresh catch of the day get hauled in. The first floor is a laid back experience with simple picnic tables that overlook the marina. Level two kicks things up a notch in class. This level is only open for the dinner hours, when visitor dine on an experimental menu in a fine dining setting. The third floor is a hip rooftop bar that overlooks the bay, and for those who work up a hunger while they drink, it also serves up fresh sushi.
L'Espalier is a historic establishment in Boston, this little French restaurant started in a humble way out of a town house in the Back Bay area. Now that it has grown in popularity, it reopened its doors beside the Mandarin Oriental Hotel. Chef Frank McClelland's dishes like garlic beef tenderloin with braised short ribs and wild mushrooms are accented by the beautiful decor. This elegant establishment offers a variety of eating adventures, from the three course prix-fixe, to the 10 course chef's journey menu.
Snooze In The Best Hotels
No hotel in Boston that is more synonymous with hospitality than the Boston Harbour Hotel at Rowes Wharf. With its 80 foot tall outdoor archway and classic city and harbour views, this is a grand old hotel. The rooms are adorned with marble archways and bathrooms, custom made desks and complimentary fresh flowers. This dedication to decoration gives the rooms a leg up on all the other lodging options in town.
The Eliot Hotel is one of the city's smallest, but best, hotels. The rooms are small, but smartly decorated in a blend of Soho chic and French country classic styles. With its marble walk-in showers and its fine dining Clio restaurant helmed by famed French-American contemporary chef Ken Oringer, it is hard to find any complaints about the Hotel Eliot.