October 23, 2014

Boston Blends the Best of the Old and New

Boston is a wonderful city, and I had the pleasure of visiting recently for the first time in many years.  In every neighborhood you see a mix of the old and the new, and that is also exemplified by the hotels.
Boston's North End
For example, just a few blocks from one another are the Fairmont Copley Plaza and the Mandarin Oriental Boston.  Both are luxury hotels and members of Virtuoso, and I would be confident sending discerning clients to either one.  However they are dramatically different in d├ęcor and ambiance, so they would suit different travelers depending on their taste.
Fairmont Copley Plaza
The Fairmont Copley Plaza is a historic, grand dame hotel which opened in 1912.  There’s a real “wow” factor on arrival as guests pass through a majestic hall clad in marble and highlighted with a gilded ceiling and chandeliers.  The seven story tall building (with a health club on the roof) faces Copley Plaza, with views of Trinity Church and the Boston Public Library.  (Insider tip: The library offers daily complimentary art and architecture tours.)
Fairmont entrance hall

Fairmont lobby

Rooms were recently renovated in honor of the centennial anniversary, so they retain a traditional and elegant (but not “fussy”) style, and have modern amenities such as Keurig coffeemakers, iPod docking stations and laptop-size safes. The Fairmont Gold level is home to a private lounge offering complimentary breakfast and evening appetizers.

Fairmont Signature room
Fairmont Gold Lounge

Virtuoso amenities are:
  • Upgrade at time of booking (on arrival in 2015, based on availability)
  • Daily full breakfast for two
  • $50 hotel credit
  • Seasonal amenity from the Executive Chef
  • Early check-in/late checkout, based on availability

Copley Square & Trinity Church (Fairmont to the right)
If you enroll in Fairmont President’s Club, you’ll immediately receive these benefits:
  • Complimentary high-speed internet and local calls
  • Complimentary health club access
  • Complimentary shoe shine
  • Daily newspaper delivery
  • Discounts in the spa and gift shop
  • Complimentary use of TaylorMade golf clubs & BMW bikes at select hotels

(After achieving Premier or Platinum status, additional benefits apply.)

Back Bay neighborhood
If old world style is not what you’re looking for, then you can head just around the corner to the Mandarin Oriental Boston, less than 2 blocks away from Copley Plaza. Situated in the heart of the Back Bay, it’s surrounded by trendy restaurants and Victorian brownstones, and is a short stroll to the upscale Newbury shopping district.  
Mandarin Oriental lobby
The Mandarin Oriental Boston has a modern yet elegant style, with blond-wood paneling in rich tones, original artwork, and cozy seating areas around a gas fireplace.  Clean lines, earth tones, and understated but elegant touches carry through into the rooms, which are some of the largest in the city

Mandarin Back Bay Room
They feature custom inlaid maple and sycamore furnishings, silk fabrics, more original art, large bathrooms, and, my favorite, a walk in closet.  It’s not huge, but you can walk in and even sit down!
That's a bench in the closet!

Spacious bathroom
The hotel does not have a club level, but fine food and cocktails are offered in a French-inspired bistro and wine bar.  And many consider the spa to be the best in Boston. (Insider tip: Lifestyle rooms are closest to the spa and feature Japanese-style soaking tubs and a daybed next to the window.)  This is the ideal hotel for a traveler who wants traditional luxury with more modern styling, a cozy home away from home.

Since our agency is both Virtuoso and a member of the Mandarin Oriental FAN Club, my clients receive: 
  • Upgrade at check-in, based on availability
  • Daily continental breakfast
  • $100 spa or food and beverage credit
  • Complimentary wi-fi
  • 4 pm late check-out, subject to availability

 These two equally fantastic hotels represent what makes Boston such a fun and special destination.  The mix of old and new means offers something to suit every taste.  And both are kid and pet friendly!

Once you’ve found the perfect hotel, then you can have fun exploring all Boston has to offer!
Paul Revere House

Fenway Park

Boston Regatta