The Best Hotels to Book in Boston, Massachusetts

The Envoy Hotel has one of the best rooftop bars in all of Boston – and some of the best views
The Envoy Hotel has one of the best rooftop bars in all of Boston – and some of the best views | © The Envoy Hotel / Expedia
Brendan Sullivan

The Massachusetts capital has long hung its tri-cornered hat on its historic sites and old-world architecture, but its renowned universities and tech companies have transformed it into one of the world’s leading innovation hubs. Likewise, some of the best hotels in Boston have taken old historic buildings and turned them into something entirely new.

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Seaport Hotel Boston, for a family vacation in Seaport

Bring everyone along to this dogs-welcome, family-friendly stay. The AAA Four-Diamond hotel sits on the waterfront, with Boston Harbor views from some contemporary rooms and suites. Chill out on a wooden deck chair in the fairy light-strewn garden or splash in the indoor heated pool. You’ll enjoy the 24-hour gym offering a steam room and classes, while little ones will love the kids’ activities. There’s plenty of eating options for all with a breakfast restaurant, cafe (with Starbucks available), and harbor-view à la carte restaurant that utilizes the hotel’s rooftop herb garden and bee colony.

The Newbury Boston, for waking up on the right side of the Public Garden

Here, little touches enhance modern rooms, like original artwork, custom-designed furnishings, hotel-exclusive Byredo toiletries, and Nespresso Vertuo coffee makers. Wake up to the city in a park view room or suite, complete with a “rainforest” shower and a “beauty sleep” mattress. Contesse, the rooftop restaurant, offers chic interiors, views of the Back Bay, and Northern Italian cuisine. Head to the Street Bar for fancy breakfasts like Lobster Benedict, and evening cocktails including the Signature Martini. Don’t miss the guests-only library, or sit back for afternoon tea in the Newbury Salon.

The Whitney Hotel, for Mediterranean meals on the Charles River

Elegantly simple decor enhances this townhouse-style hotel in Boston with rooms boasting chic white tile bathrooms and gaze-worthy wall art. Upgrade to a suite and you’ll be rewarded with Beacon Hill, Charles River, or Cambridge vistas. The on-site Peregrine restaurant serves dishes inspired by Sardinia, Sicily, Corsica and Catalonia. Work out at the fitness studio then relax in the fireside lounge, chic bar, or lantern-dotted outdoor area. Don’t forget your, (very welcome) furry friend, who’ll enjoy the gourmet doggy treats.

The Revolution Hotel, for local flavors in South End

In Boston’s hip South End neighborhood, the Revolution Hotel on Berkeley Street brings modern design to a mid-20th-century YWCA building. You can sip a coffee in the lobby cafe – adorned with a mural of famous Boston residents, including John F Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr – while browsing a shelf of books by Boston-area authors. Downstairs, you’ll find a gym and a co-working space that features Massachusetts microbrews on tap. Rooms are small – some with the option of shared bathrooms – but all space is efficiently used as part of the hotel’s mission to keep rates reasonable. Across the street, the hotel also offers loft rooms with built-in kitchenettes. In the courtyard is Cósmica, a restaurant serving delicious Cal-Mex dishes.

The Verb Hotel, for a colorful stay in Back Bay

As a ’60s-era motel retrofitted with a rock’n’roll theme, the Verb checks a lot of hipster boxes. This 93-room hotel features record players in the guest rooms, a hip Japanese izakaya in the lobby and a mid-century bus parked out front, tailor-made for Instagram. Inside, the vibe is a mix of LA mid-century modern with a touch of swinging London. However, as it’s just a long fly ball from Fenway Park, it’s also distinctly Boston, paying homage to some of the city’s greatest bands and music venues. A heated outdoor pool makes the Verb a gem for summer visits.

XV Beacon, for a touch of class near Boston Common

In the center of Boston is the elegant and cool XV Beacon, one of the best places to stay in Beantown. Enter its lobby adorned with dark wood, and admire its cozy sitting area and fireplace. Afterward, hop in its antique cage elevators to the roof deck (guests only). Rooms are sleek and luxurious, but one of the best features is the hotel’s location. Just a block off Boston Common, it’s an easy walk to just about every neighborhood and tourist attraction in the city.

The Godfrey Hotel Boston, for a cup of joe in Downtown Crossing

The minimalist style at the Godfrey is a soothing counterpoint to Boston’s chaotic Downtown Crossing neighborhood. The hotel shares its lobby with hip coffee spot George Howell Coffee, a great place to spend the morning people-watching. Expect a lot of stark white walls with pops of color in the form of modern furniture. Its location offers easy access to Boston Common and the Public Garden, Chinatown, and the Boston Theater District.

The Envoy Hotel, for high flyers in Boston Seaport

The Envoy Hotel has one of the best rooftop bars in all of Boston – and some of the best views

Best known for its rooftop bar with exceptional views of Downtown Boston and the waterfront, the Envoy has a hip, party vibe. Right at the edge of the city’s rapidly developing Seaport District, it’s popular with the after-work crowd. An easy walk from downtown, its location and views are hard to beat. Even if you’re not staying here, the Lookout Rooftop is a crowd-pleaser, where you can enjoy a sunny afternoon outside while raising a glass to the panoramic views.

The Lenox Hotel Boston, for warming up on Boylston Street

The Lenox turns on the Boston charm from the moment you walk in off busy Boylston Street. A cozy fireplace in the lobby is a great place to unthaw, as is the cheerful Irish pub, Sólás, across from reception. Rooms are small but have a lot of appeal, and the Back Bay location couldn’t be more quintessential Boston. It’s about 400ft (122m) from the Boston Marathon finish line, so you could live out your marathon glory while skipping the first 26mi (42km).

The Charles Hotel, for a collegiate feel in Cambridge

Just across the river, Cambridge is like Boston’s little Brooklyn. More residential but also very hip, it’s where you’ll find many of the best restaurants and bars in the Boston area. The Charles Hotel is a great place to stay as it lies right in Harvard Square, the commercial heart of the city and home to one of the world’s most prestigious universities. The hotel features some unique amenities, including the renowned jazz nightclub, Regattabar, on the second floor. It’s just steps from the subway for those looking to zip over to Boston proper.

Mandarin Oriental Boston, for a bubbling break in Back Bay

Whether you’re looking to splurge on a vacation or a staycation, the five-star Mandarin Oriental Boston is the way to do it. Apart from its luxurious rooms, its spa is considered one of the best in New England. If that isn’t enough indulgence for you, the hotel’s Back Bay location will leave you spoiled for choice with its top-notch shopping and restaurants.

Four Seasons Hotel Boston, for delectable dining near Newbury Street

The Four Seasons is a well-known chain of luxury hotels, and its Boston location is no exception. With a stay near the most fashionable shopping district, Newbury Street, you can make sure that you’ll be dressed to impress no matter what brings you to the city. Those in the know will tell you that the Bristol burger at the hotel’s restaurant is one of the best in town.

Fairmont Copley Plaza, for roaring ’20s glam in Copley Plaza

This Gatsby-esque hotel sits right in the middle of Boston’s famous Copley Square. It’s more than 100 years old, and its early-20th-century opulence remains intact. Marble floors, lavish chandeliers and red upholstered lobby furniture might seem busy by today’s design standards, but it’s all part of the luxurious vibe. The Fairmont Copley Plaza is surrounded by some of Boston’s most celebrated architecture, including the blue-glass John Hancock Tower across the street and the Boston Public Library, which blends European classical and stark modern elements, on the other side.

Boston Harbor Hotel, for al fresco movies on the Harborfront

Situated along Harborwalk is the classy Boston Harbor Hotel. The vibe is decidedly old-school, with an antique Boston feel. Wooden chairs line the pool, and marble duo sinks in the bathrooms are a staple touch of glamour. The harbor views are what people pay for here, and they are spectacular. In summer, the hotel plays free, film-buff-approved movies right on the patio on the water. It’s a cool way to take in some fresh ocean air without feeling bad about looking at screens.

Kimpton Marlowe Hotel, for a wine reception in the lobby

For an excellent location, views of the Charles River, easy access to the Museum of Science, and boutique service, check out the Kimpton Marlowe Hotel, just a five-minute walk across the river on the Cambridge side. The amenities are numerous and hip, including complimentary bikes to cruise the nearby riverbanks, yoga mats in each room, a running program, and a one-hour wine reception in the lobby beginning at 5 pm. With the Bambara Kitchen & Bar on the first floor, you don’t need to go far for excellent food options or drinks.
For a different stay in Boston, check into one of the most historic hotels. For a unique stay, check out our pick of the most beautiful boutique hotels in Massachusetts. To discover more great hotel options, check out our pick of the best hotels in South Boston, Massachusetts, for every traveler.

Danielle Hallock and Kim Gregory contributed additional reporting to this article.

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