There's nothing like a visit to New England to motivate me to share some of my favorite obsessions with all of you. Due to a wonderful turn of events that included me having the opportunity to work in the Boston area from time to time, along with a wonderfully beautiful wedding I was invited to, I had the pleasure of recently taking a trip to Massachusetts and visiting some wonderful places along the way.
Of course, I thoroughly documented the experience so that I could share it with all of you! So, sit back, relax, and enjoy the ride as I tell you about some of my favorite parts of a summer trip to New England. Warning: while I usually try to keep things all about the obsessions and strictly positive, there are a few items of note from my experience that I felt compelled to share with you, regardless of the fact that they were less than positive. I can't be sending you a way to Boston all willy-nilly with these horrible experiences lurking for you to potentially stumble upon, can I?! I think not.
First of all the trip started with a bang. Virgin America had made a mistake and accidentally refunded my entire ticket, unbeknownst to me, rather than just the portion that I had canceled due to some travel changes. While this resulted in me having to wait around and twiddle my thumbs for a while, it all paid off. For my nonstop flight to Boston I was upgraded to first class and starting things off just as DBS likes to, in the lap of luxury.
In keeping with the luxurious morning, I stopped by Cat Cora's airport bar for Mimosa and some early-morning pre-vacation work. Things were looking great!
My flight was delayed which ended up meaning that original dinner plans did not work out as planned, but everything went perfectly. I had noticed in some recent news stories that the Boston Park Plaza Hotel had just, and I mean just, completed a $100,000,000 major renovation that had been in the works for some time. Loving its location, I looked at what their rates were and was thrilled to see that there were some incredible deals for the hotel. So, I decided to stay there for the first two nights of my trip.
As my friend Sue so aptly pointed out, the new Boston Park Plaza vibe is a very Las Vegas. It smells like Vegas, in a good way, it's lively, very open and bright. I was greeted at the check-in desk by a lovely man named Peter. Yes, lovely… As in good looking. However, he was also a pleasure to speak with, incredibly helpful and professional.
While many city rooms can be very closet-like, I was thrilled to see that I had a corner room with a king bed, a small but effective bathroom space, and a large closet. Even better, views out of both windows, including one of the Smith & Wollensky castle, a restaurant with which I have many fond memories.
Everything is so new in the hotel that you get a clean feeling unlike most hotel experiences. I'm sorry, but regardless of how nice a hotel is, there's no avoiding the fact that many many people have been in your room and in your bed prior to you. It was a real treat to be in a newly renovated room. On top of that, the service was impeccable. That first evening a cheese plate and a bottle of chilled white wine were sent up to my room. What a kind gesture from the front desk, having heard about how excited I was to return to Boston after five years away and how my dinner plans had fallen through due to a delay.
Now, when I arrived I asked Peter at the front desk where a good place would be for me to meet with my friends and not be the only person above 30 years old. He recommended STRIP by Strega, within the hotel itself. I was less than thrilled at the idea but ultimately decided that proximity was key, due to a long day of travel.
I'm so glad that I listened to Peter because that place was awesome! I ended up meeting with two friends there on Friday evening and returning again the following evening with a group of friends. It was lively with fun 90's and 2000's music playing, good food, even better drinks, and a truly delightful staff. I spoke with many people who worked there during the time that I was there and each one was nicer than the last. Not only that, but the decor was on point! As you may have seen in past posts of mine, I love me a picture of a 90's-era supermodel. Well, they're all over the place here. Most notably, a three-piece series of giant black-and-white photos of I believe Christy Turlington, Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell acting out the 'hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil' signs. Legitimately could not be more #dbsobsessed with that.
Oh, being that this was Fourth of July weekend, I don't want to say too much about the crowds that were out because I don't think that they were indicative of what a regular Friday night in the city would look like. It was probably a little less crowded, probably a more random mix of people, and undoubtedly fewer locals.
Up next, Colleen and I headed to an old haunt of ours, Eastern Standard in Kenmore Square. While I can't say I love it anymore, because I was so disappointed in the attitude of the staff and a complete holier-than-thou vibe coming from every employee, it cannot be denied that they have amazing drinks and food. So, here are some favorites.
The Boston Park Plaza did an amazing job of helping me recover from jet lag and too many cocktails, with this killer breakfast, which I enjoyed before taking off to Newbury Street... Stay tuned for more from the trip!
drew bailey scott
My raison d'etre: Seeking and experiencing that which improves my life in all areas. The purpose of this blog: to share those incredible discoveries with others, hopefully making their lives even better!