Boston Journals

Winter Weekend in Boston

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A February 2005 trip to Boston by ssullivan

Hyatt Regency Boston Photo, Boston, Massachusetts More Photos
Quote: Wanting a weekend getaway, I planned a trip to one of my favorite cities, Boston, with a friend. The trip was short – only 48 hours – and cold – the temperature stayed below freezing – but it was still a great chance to revisit one of my favorite destinations.

Winter Weekend in Boston

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Overview

Customs House Photo, Boston, Massachusetts
Quote:
This was my fifth trip to Boston, and with each trip, this historic city grows closer to my heart. The hub of New England is a beautiful place filled with historic buildings and homes, many dating to the colonial period; outstanding museums; great restaurants; stunning parks; and a waterfront that is seeing new life as a prime residential and tourist area. For American history buffs, a visit to Boston is a must; however, if history is not your forte, you’ll still find much to love here. Some of my favorites include: Faneuil Hall Marketplace & Quincy Market This redeveloped collection of shops and restaurants occupies the grounds of the historic Quincy Market and the even mor...Read More

Hyatt Regency Boston

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Hotel | "Hyatt Regency Boston Financial District"

Hyatt Regency Boston Photo, Boston, Massachusetts
Quote:
Boston is a city where hotels tend to be quite expensive, but with a little research, it’s not hard to find some excellent weekend bargains. Such was the case with my friend and I choosing the Hyatt. On our last trip to Boston, we redeemed some of my frequent-guest points for a room at the Hilton Boston Logan Airport, a great hotel in a less than convenient location. Not wanting to deal with the inconvenience of a shuttle bus between the hotel and Airport T stop again, this time we opted to look for a hotel downtown. That’s when I found the Hyatt Regency and a variety of very reasonable weekend rates. We opted for a special on a business class room that included breakfast for up to two adults each ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 28, 2005

Hyatt Regency Boston
1 Ave De Lafayette
Boston, Massachusetts 02111
(617) 912-1234

Salty Dog Bar & Grille

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Restaurant | "Salty Dog Bar & Grille"

Salty Dog Bar & Grille Photo, Boston, Massachusetts
Quote:
The tiny Salty Dog Bar & Grille is located in the basement level of Quincy Market’s central building. After browsing the crowded food stands featuring every cuisine imaginable in the market’s central building (my first choice for lunch), my friend decided he didn’t feel like dealing with the crowds and shared tables in the market’s central rotunda eating area. So we set out to find a restaurant in the market featuring a variety of lunch specials in a quieter, less busy setting. After reviewing several choices, we settled on Salty Dog. Descending down the exterior staircase to Salty Dog is somewhat reminiscent of descending into the lower decks of an old ship. The low ceilings were just ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 28, 2005

Salty Dog Bar & Grille
206 Faneuil Hall
Boston, Massachusetts 02109
(617) 742-2094

McCormick & Schmicks

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Restaurant | "McCormick & Schmick's"

McCormick & Schmicks Photo, Boston, Massachusetts
Quote:
Normally when on vacation, I will not eat at chain restaurants. However, McCormick & Schmick’s is one chain I have no problem breaking this rule for. Each location features a unique menu that changes twice daily, depending on what fresh seafood is available on that day to the chef at that location. As a result, no two visits to the restaurant are exactly the same, and while some menu items are available at most locations, the majority of the menu is unique to the location and day that you visit. We chose to eat at McCormick & Schmick’s in part because I had a $20 gift certificate I received as a loyalty gift from Alaska Airlines that was expiring March 1. We took a chance by visitin...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on February 28, 2005

McCormick & Schmicks
1 Faneuil Hall
Boston, Massachusetts 02109
(617) 720-5522

Boston Common

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Attraction

Boston Common Photo, Boston, Massachusetts
Quote:
The Common is the nation’s oldest public park and was established in 1634. During it’s nearly 400-year history, this 50-acre green space in downtown Boston has been the site of concerts, military training exercises, concerts, protests, outdoor recreation, picnics, and the city’s first public water system. It also sits above the nation’s first subway tunnel, which is still in use along Tremont Street between the Park and Boylston Streets T stations. There are also several historic sites within the park, including the Great Elm where hangings once took place, and the Central Burying Ground, where many British and American casualties of the Battle of Bunker Hill were laid to rest. A number of military...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on March 1, 2005

Boston Common
Charles, Beacon And Tremont Streets
Boston, Massachusetts 02116

Boston Public Garden

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Attraction | "The Public Garden"

Boston Public Garden Photo, Boston, Massachusetts
Quote:
Nearly 200 years younger than its next-door neighbor the Common, the Public Garden traces it origin to the filling in of salty marshlands along the Charles River in the 1830s. Charles Street, which today separates the Garden from the less formal Common, once ran along the bank of the river. After the area where the Garden now sits was filled in, George F. Meacham’s design for an English-style garden was chosen by the city in 1869. The Garden’s central lagoon, where the famous swan boats offer visitors rides in the late spring, summer, and early fall, and whimsical suspension bridge provide the Garden with a focal point. Surrounding the lagoon, visitors will find immaculately landscaped flower garde...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on March 1, 2005

Boston Public Garden
Adjacent to Boston Common
Boston, Massachusetts
(617) 522-1966

Prudential Center Skywalk

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Attraction

Prudential Center Skywalk Photo, Boston, Massachusetts
Quote:
The 52-floor Prudential Tower is the centerpiece of Prudential Center, a development of shops, department stores, restaurants, and offices adjacent to the Hynes Convention Center and Sheraton Back Bay Hotel and across the street from the Copley Place mall. The main tourist attraction here is the Skywalk, an observation deck on the tower’s 50th floor. After the terrorist attack on September 11, 2001, the nearby observation deck on nearby, and taller, John Hancock Tower closed. Citing "safety and security concerns," the observation area closed, and rumor is that it has since been converted into executive offices. Fortunately, cooler minds prevailed at the Prudential Tower, and the Skywalk is ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on March 1, 2005

Prudential Center Skywalk
800 Boylston St
Boston, Massachusetts
617/236-3100

Copp's Hill Burial Ground

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Attraction | "Copp's Hill Burying Ground"

Copp's Hill Burial Ground Photo, Boston, Massachusetts
Quote:
In most cities, a cemetery would not be a major attraction. But this is Boston, and visitors just seem to be drawn to walking through a graveyard that dates back nearly 400 years and seeing the gravestones for famous historical figures. Visitors will find several such sites, including the Copp’s Hill, Old Granary, Central, and King’s Chapel Burying Grounds. The second oldest cemetery in Boston, Copp’s Hill Burying Ground (or Corpse Hill as it has been nicknamed) is at the summit of a steep incline just up Hull Street from the Old North Church. Founded in 1659, the cemetery is the final resting place of an estimated 10,000 souls, including prominent Bostonians from the Colonial and Revolutio...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on March 1, 2005

Copp's Hill Burial Ground
Hull St & Snowhill St
Boston, Massachusetts 02114

Faneuil Hall Marketplace

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Attraction

Faneuil Hall Marketplace Photo, Boston, Massachusetts
Quote:
When looking for a quick bite to eat or some unique Boston souvenirs, it’s hard to find a better place to go than Faneuil Hall Marketplace. Faneuil Hall Marketplace is really several separate facilities in the same location, which together form Boston’s central gathering place. The original building in the complex, Faneuil Hall, was built in 1742 as a gift to the citizens of Boston by wealthy colonial businessman Peter Faneuil. The building was originally designed to serve as a public market and meeting place, and its large central meeting hall was used by Samuel Adams as early as the 1760s as a place to rally the colonists against "taxation without representation," earning the building the moniker...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on March 1, 2005

Faneuil Hall Marketplace
4 South Market Bldg.
Boston, Massachusetts 02109
+1 617 523 1300; +1

Harvard Square

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Attraction | "Harvard Yard"

Harvard Square Photo, Boston, Massachusetts
Quote:
Harvard University is the nation’s oldest institution of higher education and dates its creation to 1636, when it was founded by a group of well-educated Puritan leaders. Despite being a large, prestigious university with a campus that sprawls over 400 buildings, the historic Harvard Yard remains the university’s core. The beautiful campus is filled with classic buildings and tree-filled lawns. A walk through Harvard Yard is a definite must when visiting Cambridge. Several highlights of a walk through Harvard Yard include Massachusetts Hall, the university’s oldest building, which was constructed in 1720. You’ll also notice the many ornate iron gates that allow access to the campus from th...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on March 1, 2005

Harvard Square

Boston, Massachusetts

North End

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Attraction

North End Photo, Boston, Massachusetts
Quote:
The historic North End is Boston’s oldest neighborhood and one of the city’s most interesting areas. Once separated for from the rest of the city by the ugly, rusting, elevated John Fitzgerald Expressway, on this visit, it was quite a positive change to find this neighborhood no longer feeling so isolated. The once elevated "green monster" freeway is now underground thanks to the decades-long Big Dig, and the old, elevated structure is a thing of the past. Within a few years, the old freeway route will be developed into a new greenbelt of parks lined by new residential and commercial development. In the meantime, a barren construction zone remains, but even that is a remarkable improvement over the...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on March 2, 2005

North End
Hanover and Salem streets
Boston, Massachusetts 02113
+1 617 635-4000

Beacon Hill Photo, Boston, Massachusetts
Quote:
On the last morning of my weekend in Boston, my friend and I had about 2.5 hours between finishing breakfast at our hotel and the time we needed to be back at the hotel to check out and head for Logan Airport to catch our 2pm flight home. Both of us love the Beacon Hill neighborhood, a section of the city we had yet to visit on this trip, so we decided that a walk through the neighborhood and adjacent Boston Common and Public Garden were in order. Beacon Hill is one of Boston’s most prestigious neighborhoods, and from the 1790s through the development of Back Bay in the 1870s, Beacon Hill was the place to live in Boston if you were wealthy. After a period of decline through the 1870s...Read More