I love exploring Boston’s fascinating history and gorgeous architecture, strolling the city by foot, popping into the Public Library, gazing along rows and rows of original Brownstone facades and breaking up sightseeing with lots of coffee stops in the city’s many wonderful cafes. The Museum of Fine Arts and Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum are must visits, a trip to Harvard is really interesting and I’d really recommend catching a baseball game if possible – the atmosphere is fantastic and the city is famed for its love of baseball.
From Mandarin Oriental, you’re perfectly located for sight-seeing, shopping and fine-dining (see top recommendations below!), close to Copley Square, the Black Bay and South End, as well as having the Prudential Center next door, with some of the best shops in the city. Once you’ve jumped in a cab from the airport it’s only 15 minutes until you’re checking in and ordering a G&T – the location on Boylston Street couldn’t be more perfect. Setting off from the hotel after breakfast, I went on a gorgeous bike-ride to the James P Kelleher Rose Garden in Fenway, where you can then wander through beautiful gardens taking in the sights and smells of 1,500 roses.
2 or 3 nights is a good amount of time to explore Boston. Tie this in with a trip to New York and Vermont (I have some fantastic recommendations for both from my most recent travels). Each of these destinations offers such a different experience and it’s incredibly easy to travel between them, particularly with a hire-car.
Mandarin Oriental is the most luxurious hotel in Boston and I particularly rate it for guaranteed first-class service, fabulous fine-dining and an ideal location. Interiors are sophisticated and elegant, with a stunning art collection and lots of art-deco style furnishings in the reception and dining areas. Mandarin Oriental is definitely a place to feel glamorous and spoil yourself, whether indulging in evening drinks in the Tattinger Champagne Bar, fine-dining and wine tasting at Bar Boulud, treating yourself to some pampering in the state-of-the-art spa or taking leisurely soaks in the vitality pool.
Whilst most of the hotel is designed to feel ultra-stylish, the bedrooms are first and foremost incredibly comfortable. Due to the size and location of M-O, it attracts a number of corporate clients, but still feels very personal with a very warm, welcoming atmosphere. All rooms and suites feature the finest luxury linens, goose-down bedding and ensuite marble bathrooms with walk-in rain showers and soaking tubs. I recommend higher floors for the best views (you can choose between city or courtyard views), and the suites are great for longer stays, providing ample space, walk-in wardrobes, comfortable sofas, writing desks and window seats with gorgeous views. The Penthouse and Presidential Suites have their own dining rooms and jacuzzis.
Chef Daniel Boulud’s restaurant, Bar Boulud is an incredibly designed French-inspired bistro, with plush burgundy leather booths for dining by candlelight and an amazing arched ceiling, inspired by the design of wine barrels. The extensive wine collection is housed in a modern glass wine cellar and along with French cuisine and New England seasonal ingredients, the restaurant is popular for its signature charcuterie and oyster bar. It certainly lives up to the reputation of its award-winning sister restaurants in New York and London.
For private dining, the Rhone Room is a lovely option, or why not enjoy an exclusive ‘Chef’s Table’, which is an amazing culinary experience (book in advance to avoid disappointment).
Lydia Shire’s restaurant Scampo in the Liberty Hotel
Toro, which specialises in Spanish tapas
Shjo in Boston’s Chinatown for modern Asian cuisine
Mr Bartley for gourmet burgers and fries
Coppa - lovely intimate Italian
My favourite coffee shop is Thinking Cup on Newbury Street, they serve great coffee and food.
The best shops and art galleries are really close to the Mandarin Oriental. Copley Place is a luxury shopping mall close to the hotel.
There are many boutiques and coffee shops along Boylston Street and Newbury Street in Boston’s Back Bay neighbourhood.
There is a good DVF shop on Newbury Street, as well as big brands such as Valentino and Chanel, but you can also get more high street options, such as Zara and H&M, and home stores such as Simon Pearce and Madura.
Boylston Street runs parallel to Newbury Street and has shops like the Apple Store, Anthropologie and Frette.
Every time I explore a new destination, whether it’s on an adventure holiday in Peru or a luxury beach escape in the Indian Ocean, I return home full of excitement to share the amazing sights I have seen. Through my own experiences I have developed a love of helping others experience the great wonders of the world; truly getting under the skin of the extraordinary destinations that are at your fingertips. Getting the details right, from which hotel is perfectly located for exploring away from the crowds, to which local guide is most knowledgeable on history or culture or art, is of paramount importance to me. I am constantly seeking out new and exciting experiences and exploring off the beaten track to ensure my clients are receiving the best and most honest first-hand advice.
Take a look at my travel diaries for food for thought on your next trip...