We asked Director of Guest Services Jason DeVries at Four Seasons Hotel Boston to gather the savviest sight-seeing suggestions he could find—not just his own, but also those of other local connoisseurs, including some he works with every day at the Hotel. Whether you want to live it up or just relax, the “Capital of New England” has everything from cobblestone streets and outdoor retreats to haute cuisine and high fashion.
Boston’s Legacy Stops
Many Bostonians are unaware that their city even has a National Park, although Harbor Islands National Park includes about 30 islands—all a stone’s throw from downtown. Ferries leave from five locations, including Long Wharf and Fan Pier, home to the park’s Discovery Center, and serve seven islands, though Georges Island has the most service. The island is home to a National Historic Civil War Landmark, Fort Warren.
Beacon Hill is Old World Boston at its best with Federal-style row houses, narrow gaslit streets and authentic Boston charm. Louisburg Square is especially gorgeous with festive décor during winter holiday seasons, and Charles Street is lined with some of the city’s most unique shops and boutiques.
Relive the Jazz Age
Boston’s Berklee College of Music is one of the world’s top such educational institutions, and at nearby Beehive guests can take in live music, jazz and cocktails with underground Boston flair. Scullers, located atop the Hilton Hotel, is the place for nightly jazz and spectacular views of the Boston skyline.
Cook With a Chef
Executive Chef Brooke Vosika has been with Four Seasons longer than any other chef—nearly three decades—and once monthly he gives a group cooking class (15 maximum) with a specific theme (brunch, pastas, etc.), hands-on instruction, paired cocktails and wines, and, of course, the food you’ve prepared.
Science for All Ages
Boston’s Museum of Science is the most-attended cultural institution in New England, with an IMAX theatre, laser shows, planetarium, motion simulator and numerous ever-changing exhibits. For young ones, the excellent Boston Children’s Museum has countless hands-on exhibits in science, culture and the arts.
A quick and easy urban escape for nature lovers is nearby Blue Hills Reservation, which has 125 miles (200 km) of trails on 7,000 acres (2,700 hectares), plus one of Boston’s best views from the 635-foot (190-metre) summit of Great Blue Hill.
Located on chic Newbury Street, La Voile treats Bostonians to an authentic French Riviera culinary adventure. The Soupe de Poisson (fish soup) and Loup de Mer (sea bass) are two favourites. An Ivy League foodie experience is sure to be found at nearby Craigie on Main in Cambridge, the South End Buttery and Formaggio Kitchen. Couples can savour a date night at Toscano, and families can find a tasty cupcake treat at Isabelle’s Curly Cakes.
The World Is Your Oyster
New England is famous for its oysters, and Boston has two of the best places anywhere to enjoy briny crustaceans. Charming and historic, Union Oyster House, choice of Daniel Webster and John F. Kennedy, is America’s oldest restaurant. One hundred eighty years later, celebrity Boston chef Barbara Lynch opened B&G Oysters, a decidedly modern take on the classic oyster bar.
Louis Boston is a fashionable destination for clothing, home décor, music and art in Boston’s fast-growing Fan Pier neighbourhood. Shop the store, then venture upstairs for waterfront drinks and dining at the contemporary Sam’s.
Be a Kid at Heart
Packed with history, parks and museums, Boston is one of the country’s most family-friendly cities, so Four Seasons created the Kid-Kation package offering a gift toy, his and hers backpacks, custom amenities, an in-room visit from the Hotel’s Ice Cream Man, cookie-making classes in the Pastry Shop, the chance to Raid the Fridge for a midnight snack each Saturday, suggested itineraries and more.