Best hotels in Boston
Centrally located in the Back Bay, the hotel exudes luxury at every turn, from the massive marble lobby to the well-appointed rooms with skyline views. If you seek the ne plus ultra of spa experiences, venture no further than the hotel’s award-winning, 16,000-square-foot oasis for a decadent, Asian-influenced massage or facial. Primo dining options include the in-house Bar Boulud from celebrity chef Daniel Boulud and the adjacent L’Espalier, a local fine dining stalwart.
The five-star Four Seasons is known for its famous guests. When the Stones roll into town, this is where they set up camp. Built on the site of a former Playboy Club, the hotel boasts an ideal location in the Back Bay with swooning views of the Public Garden, plus impeccable amenities (swimming pool, fitness center and spa) and services.
Old marries new at a hotel housed in what was once a private mansion. Century-old architectural details still abound in the 1903 structure, including the wrought iron birdcage elevator. Each guestroom is decorated in a cream and espresso palette with specially commissioned art, with both a gas fireplace and a separate sitting area. Impressive amenities include cashmere throws, fine linens, and fresh flowers.
This luxurious, waterside hotel is regally perched at Rowes Wharf, with easy access to the Boston Harborwalk, many waterside restaurants, and various boat cruises (which the concierge is happy to set up). One of BHH’s unique charms is that it hosts so many events right on site, from weekly alfresco movie viewings in the summer to outdoor fires and cocoa in the winter—plus the Boston Wine Festival, held every year from January through March.
Overlooking the Boston Common near the Theatre District, the Ritz-Carlton eschews old-fashioned opulence in favor of contemporary style. A creamy, neutral colour palette creates a warm, relaxing atmosphere, and suites feature sweeping floor-to-ceiling windows and imposing fireplaces. Guests enjoy access to the neighboring spa at the Equinox Sports Club, and a pair of on-site haunts - Artisan Bistro and the Avery Bar - provide a nice alternative to the many restaurants and bars nearby.
For more than a century, the Liberty Hotel existed as a decidedly different entity—the Charles Street Jail, once home to the likes of Malcolm X and Sacco and Vanzetti. Some of the 298 rooms offer sumptuous river views, and many guests spend their time bouncing between the four different restaurants and bars. (Scampo is helmed by legendary Boston chef Lydia Shire.) During the summer months, the hotel hosts regular yoga classes and after-work events for both guests and locals, including fashion shows, cooking classes and a weekly “Yappy Hour” for dog owners.
The Langham is housed in a building that opened in 1922 as the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston. The rooms feel more like residences, with European furniture, plush bedding, Italian marble bathrooms and skyline views. Myriad F&B experiences run the gamut from The Reserve, the lobby-level champagne lounge, to BOND, a trendy restaurant and nightspot. One of the most famous chocolate buffets in the country is offered (except in the summertime) on Saturdays, featuring more than 100 decadent desserts.
Housed in two historic, 19th-century townhouses on the cobblestoned Charles Street, Beacon Hill Hotel is all about Old World amenities. The airy rooms, with their writing desks and neutral color schemes, recall a Parisian pied a terre; shuttered windows face out towards Beacon Hill and can actually be opened. The second-floor common area invites conviviality among guests, as does the private rooftop terrace. The street-level bistro is open morning through night, and the fireplace bar is a great spot for a nightcap. The location cannot be beat; right in the middle of Beacon Hill’s revived shopping scene, with the picturesque Charles River just a skip away.
The 136-room Envoy’s interior plays to its buzzy Seaport location, with modern, nautically themed rooms facing out towards the Boston Harbor. Outlook Bar and Kitchen, the hotel’s in-house restaurant, serves up contemporary American dishes with a Caribbean flair and live music; locals often stop by for lunch or a cocktail at the bar. But the truly happening spot is the massive rooftop bar overhanging the harbor; during the warm weather months, locals line up for the pleasure of rubbing elbows with hotel guests.
The centrally located and beautifully appointed Fairmont Copley Place first opened in 1912, and the grandeur of an earlier era is reflected in the ornate marble lobby. The 383 rooms are more sedate, decorated in cool hues and commissioned art sketches depicting Boston scenes. Guests can head upstairs to the expansive rooftop gym, then gain back the calories at OAK Long Bar and Kitchen, a thoroughly renovated bar and brasserie.
Both kid- and pet-friendly, Hotel Commonwealth offers rooms that are modern and doused in sunlight; many face out onto Fenway Park. (Baseball-themed packages are available for die-hards.) The collection of on-site F&B might be the most impressive in the city; between Eastern Standard, the Hawthorne Bar, and Island Creek Oyster Bar, guests are well-served day and night.
Built in 1925, the historic Eliot Suite Hotel is located on the edge of the Back Bay. The elegantly decorated rooms feature marble bathrooms and soundproof windows. Uni, the award-winning, subterranean restaurant, lets guests enjoy primo sushi bar treats and inventive small plates without having to venture outside.
A blend of classic and modern architectural elements, this downtown hotel is a boutique haven for business travelers and those seeking central access to the city. From a wood-paneled lobby, you’ll travel upstairs to rooms that are urbane and opulent, with terrific city views. Nine Zero provides a master class in pet-friendliness, from complimentary dog beds to pet sitting and, yes, four-legged massage services.
The privately owned Lenox, which first opened in 1900, boasts a prime location next to the Boston Public Library. The hotel’s old-style gold and blue decor oozes quiet elegance, while its rooms feature brass chandeliers, dark wood furniture and marble bathrooms; several also boast working fireplaces, as does the charmingly restored lobby. The Lenox also houses City Bar (stylish lounge), Sólás (Irish pub), and City Table (neighborhood restaurant).
The Colonnade’s fantastic location wows out-of-towners thanks to dozens of attractions and inviting businesses within walking distance. Guest rooms, which look more like perfectly appointed city condos, feature Eames furniture and modern art. The hotel’s popular rooftop pool includes a bar and private cabanas as well as special events with local chefs and yoga teachers.