One of the great things about living in Connecticut is the close proximity to some amazing cities like Boston and Manhattan. You can easily do Boston in a day trip, but if you choose to make it an overnight stay or weekend, there are plenty of things to do like shopping on Newbury Street, exploring Faneuil Hall and outdoor farmer’s markets, walking the Freedom Trail and dining in America’s next great food town. The greater Boston area is a wonderful blend of stylish sophistication and historic New England charm.
The hottest place to stay in Boston now, in my opinion, is The Colonnade Hotel. Nestled at the intersection of a quaint residential community and a short walk away from Newbury Street, it’s in the perfect location in the Back Bay. You’re also close to the Boston Symphony, Museum of Fine Arts, Fenway Park and Northeastern U. And it’s the only hotel in Boston with a rooftop pool – but we’ll get to that in a minute!
The Colonnade Hotel has provided genuine Bostonian hospitality to residents and visitors for more than 40 years. The hotel won the 2012 MLA Good Earth Keeping Award, and in 2009 was recipient of Mayor Menino’s Boston Green Business Award and the Boston Business Journal’s Green Business Award winner in 2011. Brasserie JO has also been recognized as a 3-Star Certified Green Restaurant©.
As soon as you enter your room you notice stunning floor-to-ceiling windows with unobstructed views of Prudential Center and Back Bay. To my delight, the windows actually open and flood the space with natural sunlight, fresh air and unobstructed views. You won’t likely find a fresh air experience like that anywhere else in the city! All of The Colonnade’s windows have been replaced with energy efficient, soundproof floor-to-ceiling windows with improved double panes and advanced tint technology.
Energy saving climate-controlled heating and ventilating systems are activated when the guest checks-in and deactivated at checkout or when the guest leaves the room for a period of time. Thoughtfully designed, they can be maintained via a central network, eliminating any need to disturb the guest with an in-room visit.
We had an indulgent rejuvenating sleep in their luxurious beds with plush pillow-top mattresses and other in-room comforts including a 37-inch flat-screen LCD TV, Keurig coffee brewers, dimmable lighting, an abundance of outlets and complimentary ULTRA* high-speed wired & wireless Internet access which is a MUST for writers and business travelers.
Now let’s talk about that rooftop pool! Known as RTP, the only rooftop pool in Boston, it offers an idyllic place for lounging and enjoying a cocktail amidst a sweeping view of the Boston skyline. You’ll think you’re in Miami with the “club-like” scene, delicious craft cocktails and lively crowd that gathers on hot summer days and nights. You can also take a yoga class on Wednesday mornings poolside.
But back to their many energy saving initiatives! Underscoring The Colonnade’s environmental responsibility is its innovative new harsh chemical free cleaning system. The hotel is the first in the nation to implement the ElectroCideTM System on a property-wide basis. This revolutionary cleaning process has been proven to be 80% more powerful than chlorine bleach yet completely nontoxic to humans and the environment. It has virtually eliminated the use of bleach and other harsh chemicals within the hotel.
And probably the coolest thing The Colonnade Hotel has done is adopted and introduced Boston’s First Hotel Smart Car that is used to make pick-ups and deliveries for guests.
The hotel is home to the award-winning Brasserie Jo, which serves authentic French brasserie fare for breakfast, lunch and dinner. If you’re looking for other options, you’ll find that Beantown is outgrowing its old-world food traditions and turning into a culinary force to be reckoned with. Economic growth, a rising crop of young talent, burgeoning ethnic communities, and culinary innovation from the likes of MIT and Harvard are all contributing factors working in its favor. “Boston has gone through a renaissance in development and food,” says Mary Dumont, a former Food & Wine “Best New Chef” and evangelist for modern New England cuisine at Harvest in Cambridge. “It’s a city with the best schools and hospitals, among other things, so no wonder New York chefs are trying to open restaurants here now instead of the other way around.” And from the dining we experienced, she’s right!
A rising generation of award-winning chefs merits close attention now. Michael Scelfo’s Alden & Harlow, Cassie Piuma’s Sarma, Jeremy Sewall’s Row 34, Will Gilson’s Puritan & Company, Joanne Chang’s Myers + Chang, Tony Maws’ Kirkland Tap & Trotter, Maslow’s Ribelle, and Ken Oringer and Jamie Bissonnette’s Coppa and Toro have all opened in the last couple of years.
As you probably know, I love tapas – so we dined at Toro and Tapeo. Both were outstanding. At Toro we had the delicious creamy and charred lime aioli grilled corn, San Sebastián style wild mushroom, farm eggs and herbs, fried potatoes with aioli and spicy tomatoes sauce and seafood paella. At Tapeo we enjoyed the roasted seasoned potatoes with aioli, beef tenderloin with chimichurri, chicken empanadas, and garlic chicken thighs in a sweet and sour sauce.
Also – don’t miss the Farmer’s Market on Copley Square – I would drive to Boston just for the day to go there! Their Facebook site is: https://www.facebook.com/CopleySquareFarmersMarket/
Dr. Diane Hayden is the owner and publisher of Natural Nutmeg Magazine. She holds a Ph.D. in Exercise Physiology from the University of Maryland and is an Empowerment Life Coach. Her passion centers on helping men and women break the failed relationship cycle through her proprietary SPARK method. You can learn more about her online at http://drdianehayden.com/.