What To See & Do

By Laurie Bain Wilson

Like so many cities, Boston has toughed out the pandemic with heart and grit—and is ready to crush it this summer. The mood is so celebratory—you’ll fist pump your way through town. So, let’s get this party started.

The USS Constitution Museum Just re-opened in May, this “never defeated in battle” ship, that sits next to Old Ironsides, in the Charlestown Navy Yard home, has the coolest exhibits and programs.

Freedom Trail Hear ye! Sixteen of Colonial America’s sites flank the Freedom Trail, including Paul Revere’s house. Walk at your own pace. Or, take a tour. Info:

Swan Boats A Boston bucket list item, these rides that glide at the Boston Public Garden, are sweet for all ages. Info:

The Boston Duck Tours A fun treat, splashing into the Charles River and crawling the streets, with lively narrative that tells Boston’s story. Info:

Whale Watch Hi-speed catamarans depart from Boston to the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary just offshore. Naturalists with the New England Aquarium are your guides. Info:

Krasi They’re lined up waiting for the doors to swing open at five—for friendly service, authentic Greek food, and a wine list that’s sought out by those in the know. Info:

Woods Hill Pier 4 A Seaport gem, with a lovely waterfront patio. The menu shines on ecologically viable ingredients sourced from The Farm at Woods Hill and local purveyors—healthy, gorgeous dishes with a side of life-is-good.

Lola42 Sister to Nantucket’s Lola41, this Seaport spot—with waterfront patio—is where dishes like Grilled Whole Branzino tempt. But then, there’s that sushi bar. Info:

City Table The beehives on the rooftop of this Lenox Hotel restaurant are buzzing again, and that means you’ll need to order a dish or sip with that uber-local honey.

Bistro du Midi A joie de vivre spot across from the Boston Public Garden with a lovely, reimagined French-inspired menu, this restaurant has captured the imaginations of Brahmins for decades.

Rare Steakhouse Elegant with a winning menu housed in the Encore Casino Hotel, the exceptional service will make you feel like a winner—even if you’re a loser. Take the quick boat ride from Boston. Info:

Bricco Ristorante Bricco features a swank enoteca with popular late night Italian dishes and sips from 11:30 pm to the wee hours. Info:

Time Out Market Boston Popular with locals, Boston’s best eats are housed in this industrial chic building—including much-loved Cusser’s (roast beef, lobster) and Union Donuts. Info: timeoutmarket/

Ocean Prime Summer is prime time—which means lobster tails, filet mignon, and a Berries and Bubbles cocktail at this handsome spot. Info:

Boston Harbor Hotel It’s summer lovin’ thanks to this stunning hotel’s annual Summer in the City event with weekly live concerts. The Boston Harbor views from the guest rooms are mind-bending, and just steps to the trending Seaport District. Info:

Four Seasons Dalton Boston’s swanky, lanky Four Seasons hotel in Boston’s tallest building, just debuted its gorgeous Trifecta lounge for sips and bites. The hotel’s partnered with the Institute of Contemporary Art; book the Virgil Abloh exhibit package. Info:

Mandarin Oriental Boston A Boston beauty that just underwent a $15 million nip and tuck, with a spa and guest rooms overlooking town. Book the Taste of Boston package—think three-course meals at fab restaurants in town, and valet parking. Info:

Ritz-Carlton Boston Time warp: For 94 years, the Ritz has pampered guests with charm and grace. It still does and boasts a gorgeous refurbishment of its classy suites/guest rooms (even influences from literary lions like Ralph Waldo Emerson). Info:

Hotel Marlowe It’s summer in the city, and you’ll want to kayak or SUP on the Charles River. This hip Cambridge hotel has you covered with L.L. Bean watercraft. And the renovated guest rooms with views of the Charles will float your boat. Info:

The Whitney With a perfect location on darling Charles Street, The Whitney’s got the prettiest garden courtyard in town. Summer fun: The Sip & Paint package includes “vintage” goodies, a blanket and a paint kit for you to paint the town.

The Encore Hotel A win-win: A dazzling casino (2,800 slots) and stylish guest rooms with floor to ceiling windows; opt for high floor for fabulous Mystic River and Boston views.

Hotel Commonwealth Baseball’s back at Fenway, and this hotel is your home base. Book a Fenway room/suite for cool views of America’s oldest ballpark. Sweet spot: The hotel’s partnered with Bedside Reading, a novel initiative where popular books are placed on nightstands at luxury hotels for you to read—and take home! Info:

The Colonnade Newly-renovated, spacious guest rooms and a clutch Back Bay location, but the real grab is that it’s home to Boston’s only outdoor rooftop swimming pool, and it’s gorgeous. Cabana rentals. Info:

Hampton Inn/Homewood Suites Seaport Just hatched this spring, this two-brands-under-one-roof spot shows off spanking clean rooms with comp breakfast. Info:

Revolution Hotel Trendy micro rooms, in hip, South End location, this hotel speaks to younger guests with its popular Cosmica restaurant, and low room rates. Info:

The Godfrey In the busy Downtown Crossing nabe, the hotel is home to Boston’s popular George Howell Coffee, and spacious, handsome guest rooms. Info:

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