Archive for June, 2013

Let’s Go Shopping at Faneuil Hall

Written by admin
Friday, 28 Jun 2013

While you’re vacationing in Boston, you’ll probably be thinking of the folks back home to get souvenirs for. If you’re wondering what the best location is for finding the ideal gift for coworkers and loved ones alike, look no further than the Faneuil Hall marketplace located in the heart of downtown Boston.

Not only does Faneuil Hall provide a great selection of outdoor vendors with gadgets and apparel to get your coworkers and friends, but there are tons of other activities that can keep you entertained while you explore a piece of Boston’s history.

Just a five-minute walk from the Government Center T stop, this outdoor shopping center provides a wide variety of restaurants and shops. If you’re looking for a summer wardrobe, stores like Abercrombie and Fitch, Urban Outfitters, and American Eagle will keep you up with the hottest trends.

Come lunch time, even the pickiest eaters will have no problem finding the perfect dining spot at Faneuil Hall. Inside the historic Quincy Market building you’ll find dozens of restaurants made to satisfy any craving.

Our hotel is just a short T-ride away from this historical landmark that’s both fun and educational for the entire family. Make your reservation now and soon you’ll be able to explore one of Boston’s most popular sites!

Explore the Boston Harbor Islands

Written by admin
Thursday, 27 Jun 2013

boston-harbor-islands-2If you’re looking for a slightly different experience in Boston this summer, one of our greatest hidden treasures is only a short ferry ride from downtown Boston. When you visit the Boston Harbor Islands, you can explore a Civil War-era fort, enjoy nature trails, get some sun on the beach, and more! There are several islands accessible either by bridge from the mainland or by ferry. Here are three of our favorites:

Spectacle Island: This island offers a series of nature trails and a beautiful sandy beach. Swimming in New England waters can sometimes be a bracing experience, but here you’ll find some of the warmest water in New England, reaching the high 60s in the middle of summer. Spectacle Island also features the highest point in the harbor, offering gorgeous panoramic views of the city skyline.

Georges Island: Fort Warren, a historic Civil War-era fort, dominates most of this island. You can explore on your own or take a ranger-guided tour of the stunning granite architecture of the fort. Watch out for the island’s ghost, the the Lady in Black! Also, as a primary destination for the harbor ferries, Georges Island is the perfect place to stop to catch the smaller boats between islands.

Peddocks Island: The largest island in Boston Harbor also sits close to the mainland. Featuring several historic buildings, nature trails, and an unsupervised beach, this is one of the most diverse islands and gives you a taste of everything Boston Harbor has to offer.

There are several other islands in the Harbor accessible via ferry and water shuttle and we encourage our guests to visit! Although they are a popular destination in the summer, there are still many locals who have never taken the ferry trip to the islands. When you visit our Boston bed and breakfast, consider exploring one of the best hidden treasures our city has to offer with a trip to the Boston Harbor Islands!

Ed Markey Elected to U.S. Senate

Written by admin
Wednesday, 26 Jun 2013

Ed Markey, Senator, MassachusettsDemocrat Ed Markey defeated Republican opponent Gabriel Gomez yesterday in a special election to fill the U.S. Senate seat vacated by John Kerry. Markey, endorsed by several prominent Democrats including Kerry himself, won the seat with 55% of the Massachusetts popular vote. Born and raised in Malden, the new Senator had represented the 7th district of Massachusetts from 1976 until earlier this year when he shifted gears to focus on his Senate race. During his tenure in the House, he served as Chairman of the House Energy Independence and Global Warming Committee and a member of the Committee on Energy and Commerce and the Committee on Natural Resources. Markey has been described as a “low-profile” politician with a strong focus on energy and the environment. While he may not be a political star like former Massachusetts’ senators Ted Kennedy and John Kerry among others, we trust and hope that Markey will represent the best interests of Massachusetts as he takes his seat in the Senate.

New England’s Best Clam Shack

Written by admin
Tuesday, 25 Jun 2013

Clam Box, Ipswich, clam shack, BostonIf you’ve ever spent a summer in New England, you’ve probably eaten at least once at a clam or lobster shack. These no-frills, often family-owned restaurants specialize in fried and steamed seafood and little else. New England, and especially Massachusetts’ Cape Ann region, is home to countless of these destinations, each one usually claiming to be the best around. recently held a Shack Showdown, inviting readers to vote in a tournament-style bracket for the best clam or lobster shack in New England. After five rounds of voting, the Clam Box in Ipswich emerged victorious over Woodman’s of Essex.

Both restaurants have fierce local defenders (I’m partial to Woodman’s myself) but you’re guaranteed a great meal at either location. And it’s certainly worth the 45-60 minute drive from Boston to check out the gorgeous Cape Ann region. It may not be as well-known as our other famous Cape, but you can’t miss visiting the North Shore if you’re looking for a classic New England experience. If you’re visiting either of our Boston bed and breakfast locations in the city, there are many ways you can visit the towns of the North Shore and we’ll be happy to give you directions!

Mission Cantina Opens on Beacon Street

Written by admin
Friday, 21 Jun 2013

mc-2013-06-04-at-3.50.41-PMMission Cantina, a new Mexican restaurant, opened earlier this month across from the Beacon Inn at 1087 in the space formerly inhabited by the Beacon Street Tavern. This new restaurant offers house made tortilla chips, several varieties of tacos, burritos, etc., and around 40 different types of tequila. We’re always excited about a new restaurant in the neighborhood! This one comes to us via our neighbors out in Western Massachusetts, where the original Mission Cantina was a big hit in Amherst.

The décor takes the predictable Mexican themes in a charmingly eclectic direction with influences ranging from Día de los Muertos skeletons to Mayan temples. And if billiards is your game, the bar features a dark purple pool table. If you’re staying with us at 1087 Beacon Street outpost of our Boston bed and breakfast and you’ve got a hankering for margaritas and tacos, then head on across the street and try the new Mission Cantina!

Boston Children’s Museum Celebrates 100 Years

Written by admin
Thursday, 20 Jun 2013

Boston Children's MuseumFor visitors to our city, the Boston Children’s Museum has always been a favorite family destination. And while the museum might be for kids, there’s no question that they’re all grown up as the venerable institution celebrates its 100th year! The museum first opened on August 1, 1913 at the Pinebank Mansion in the Jamaica Plain neighborhood. Although they moved into a larger space a few blocks away in the 1930s, the museum would remain in JP for several decades.

In 1979, out of a desire for more space and greater accessibility for residents of downtown Boston, the museum moved to an empty wool warehouse on the Fort Point Channel where it has remained ever since. After a $47-million project to renovate and expand the space in 2006 and 2007, the museum became the city’s first green museum.

As part of their centennial celebration, the Children’s Museum has posted a fantastic pictorial history detailing their growth and expansion over the past 100 years. If you’re visiting our Boston bed and breakfast with kids, you absolutely must visit the Children’s Museum! The museum is open Saturday through Thursday from 10am to 5pm and Fridays from 10am to 9pm and admission for adults and children costs $14.

A Summer Solstice Night’s Dream

Written by admin
Wednesday, 19 Jun 2013

Summer is still just around the corner. Are you looking for a fun, enlightening way to bring in the Summer Solstice with your family? Why not make your way to the Harvard Museums of Science and Culture, located just a short T ride from both Beacon Inn locations. They will be opening their doors for free from 5-9pm on June 21st for a celebration that observes the solstice rituals and traditions of many cultures.

The night kicks off at 5:00pm in their new Plaza located next to the Harvard Science Center at One Oxford Street in Cambridge. You will be welcomed by the dance troupe Red Herring Morris, who will be performing English ritual dances and erecting a May pole in honor of the new season. Dancing is encouraged!

Guests will also be awarded a rare cosmic treat, as Harvard Science Center opens their roof deck observatory to the public. Here you can watch the sun fade across the Boston skyline following its longest day in the sky.

Other fun activities to check out include traditional Aztec dances, planetarium shows especially for kids, and even the opportunity to navigate using a sunstone, just like the Vikings! We guarantee you’ll be tired after learning ancient dances and voyaging until the Normans have conquered, so return to the Inn and relax in one of our comfortable, spacious rooms.

Who is Whitey Bulger?

Written by admin
Tuesday, 18 Jun 2013

Boston’s notorious gangster Whitey Bulger is currently sitting trial at the U.S. District Court here in Boston. You’ve probably seen his name in the headlines, but if you’re not familiar with his case, you might be wondering, “Who is this Whitey Bulger guy anyway?” He may not be Boston’s favorite son, but he’s an important part of local history and current events, so it’s worth getting a primer on Bulger if you’re interested in our city.

Bulger, born James Joseph Bulger Jr. in 1923, was a notorious South Boston crime boss and head of the Winter Hill Gang. Bulger was a lifelong criminal, serving time in a juvenile reformatory as a teen and then spending nine years in the federal penitentiary for armed robbery and hijacking shortly following his honorable discharge from the Army. It wasn’t until he was released from prison in 1965 that  he really began his rise to power in Boston’s criminal underworld.

During the Killeen-Mullen crime war in the early 1970s, Bulger proved himself indispensable to the Mullen family and earned a high-ranking position in the Southie underworld following the families’ truce in 1972. Throughout the 70s and 80s, Bulger grew and consolidated his power, all while serving as a secret informant to the FBI, earning his own criminal activities a certain degree of protection from the federal authorities.

Eventually the DEA, Massachusetts State Police, and Boston Police Department were able to crack down on Bulger’s illegal gambling operations, forcing the crime boss to flee the city and become a fugitive in 1994. After spending sixteen years at large and twelve years on the FBI Most Wanted list, Bulger was finally captured on June 22, 2011.

Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular Announced for July 4

Written by admin
Monday, 17 Jun 2013

esplanade-boston-fireworks-This details of year’s Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular lineup have finally been announced. The festivities will feature New England performers including Grammy-winner Susan Tedeschi, singer/songwriter Howie Day, national recording artist Ayla Brown, and multi-instumentalist and vocalist Ellis Hall. These guests will share the stage with Maestro Keith Lockhart and the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra with the Tanglewood Festival Chorus. And, of course, the celebration will culminate with one of the greatest fireworks displays in the nation over the Charles River!

While the event will be televised, there’s no substitute for the real thing. The free concert is held in the Hatch Shell on the beautiful Charles River Esplanade. Visitors and locals alike camp out all day for a prime spot in the park. It’s a fantastic event and the fireworks are a must-see if you’re thinking about visiting Boston for the 4th. Come stay with us in one of our two Boston bed and breakfast locations for a Fourth of July you won’t forget!


Happy Father’s Day!

Written by admin
Sunday, 16 Jun 2013

Here at the Beacon Inn we’d like to wish all the dads out there a very happy Father’s Day! If you’re staying with us in Boston this weekend, we have a few suggestions for things to do:

Visit the deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum:Just a short drive from Boston, the deCordova Sculpture Park offers a great outdoor art experience. If you’re looking to get a little fresh air and see some great modern sculpture, this is a unique museum that we highly recommend. Dads get free admission from 10am to 5pm!

Grab a Father’s Day Brunch: Zaftigs Delicatessen is one of our favorite brunch destinations in Boston for both savory and sweet options, but you can definitely expect a wait, especially for a Sunday brunch on Father’s Day. If you don’t mind standing in line for a little while, the food is well worth the wait! (We recommend the potato pancakes and the banana-stuffed French toast.) It’s a pleasant walk from either of our Beacon Street locations. If you’re looking for something a little different and don’t mind a little more of a walk, we recommend Deep Ellum for a slightly more upscale brunch (duck confit hash!) or the Allston Diner for a hipster take on Southern comfort food (chicken and waffles!), both in the neighboring community of Allston.

Take a Tour of Fenway Park: Between 11am and 2pm, stop by Fenway Park for their annual Father’s Day “Walk in the Park.” This free event gives families a close-up look at one of America’s most historic ballparks. Take a walk around the warning track, sit inside the visitor and home dugouts, and get autographs from Red Sox alumni!