The Virgin Atlantic cabin crew offer our guide to Boston, full of insider tips on the best places go, eat, drink and stay in Beantown.
Whether or not you’re a fan of baseball, it is a true part of the Boston identity. That’s why we recommend a stay at the Hotel Commonwealth, which will schedule you a behind-the-scenes tour of Fenway Park. And we think the hotel’s Baseball Suite, which is full of old-school baseball memorabilia like Cracker Jacks and Baby Ruths, is fabulous. We’d of course recommend you go to a Red Sox game, too, if you happen to be here during baseball season – there’s nothing quite like the smell of freshly cut grass and the roar of the hometown crowd to put you in a Boston mood.
You also can’t come to Boston without sampling some of their famous clam chowder, and while it’s available all over town, we think the very best chowdah (as we say) is to be had at the Union Oyster House downtown. It’s America’s oldest restaurant and you can book into the JFK booth, which was the former president’s favourite seat.
We also suggest taking a stroll down Newbury Street to check out the couture shops – fashionistas should let loose and splurge because there’s no tax on clothing priced below $175 in Boston. Even if you aren’t splashing the plastic, we love the beautiful redbrick architecture here, and you can stop in to Emerge Spa for a massage and a Swiss shower, which evaporates all the city grime off like magic.
When the sun comes out in Boston, the first place we head is to Boston Common for a picnic in the country’s first public park. Of course, you’ll also want to venture across the Charles River to Cambridge – home to one very famous university that was, incidentally, the first one the country: Harvard! Make sure to stick around Harvard Square into the evening so you can watch the many buskers and street performers who turn up here to give impromptu shows.
Harvard Square is also one of Boston’s nightlife hubs, and we especially love the cosy, cavernous atmosphere and great beer selection at Grendel’s Den. If you’ve got an extra day or two, we’d highly recommend taking a day trip out to the Boston Harbor Islands by ferry or hiring a car for a drive up the picturesque rocky coast along the North Shore.