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Greater Boston hotels: 18 essential ones for the fall and beyond

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'Tis the fall, perhaps the most enviable time to sojourn in New England. Or maybe you or someone you know just has to be in Boston or Cambridge on business. This map seeks to answer that burning-est of questions: Where should one stay while visiting the Boston area.

These 18 inns include the proverbial something for everyone, whether a Red Sox, Bruins, or Celtics fan; a conventioneer; a tech entrepreneur; a professional on the road; a selfie-stick-wielding tourist; an academic or a prospective student (or the parents thereof); a rock 'n roll nostalgist; or simply someone craving convenience.

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1. Element Boston Seaport

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395 D St
Boston, MA 02210

The Element Seaport, which opened earlier this year, is right across the street from the convention center, making it a good bet for people in town for trade shows and the like. Some 180 of its 510 rooms are suites.

2. Aloft Boston Seaport

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401-403 D Street
Boston, MA 02210
(617) 530-1600
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The Aloft opened in the first half of 2015, and is another option convenient to the convention center. It's also proximate to the Seaport District and its super-fun Lawn on D park.

3. The Envoy Hotel

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70 Sleeper Street
Boston, MA 02210
(617) 338-3030
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This 136-room, Marriott-branded hotel opened during the summer of 2015 amid Boston's amorphously delineated Innovation District. The minimalist, breezy design of the Envoy fits with that district's vibe.

4. The Langham Boston Hotel

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250 Franklin St
Boston, MA 02110
(617) 451-1900
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The Langham's building started life in 1922 as a Federal Reserve building, and became the Langham as we know it in 2003. Some of the interior, including the soaring ceilings on the second level, reflects this financial pedigree as does its very location in the Financial District. Take heed, Masters of the Universe traveling to Boston.

5. Ames Boston Hotel

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1 Court St
Boston, MA 02108
(617) 979-8100
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When this 114-room inn opened at the tail end of last decade just north of the Financial District, it was noted for being a hip redo of an 1889 building—a trendy envelope-pusher, that is, about what Boston boutiques can be.

6. Boston Harbor Hotel

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70 Rowes Wharf
Boston, MA 02110
(617) 439-7000
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The 256-room, five-star hotel helped change the whole area, though it still has the feel of being out there on the water’s edge in the best and worst senses (i.e. fabulous views, but isolated). It is definitely for those who want an extra-quiet refuge from the city.

7. The Liberty Hotel

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215 Charles St
Boston, MA 02114
(617) 224-4000
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The former site of the Charles Street Jail way back when, the 300-room Liberty (get it?) is a tad out of the way for business travelers, but perfect for tourists wanting to soak up history in nearby Beacon Hill.

8. Godfrey Hotel Boston

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505 Washington St
Boston, MA 02111
(312) 649-2000
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The 242-key boutique inn officially opened in February in a fast-changing Downtown Crossing (think Millennium Place, Millennium Tower, Roche Bros., etc.). The rooms have a minimalist modern feel, and the Godfrey's likely perfect for tourists and business travelers alike given its central location.

9. Boston Park Plaza

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50 Park Plz
Boston, MA 02116
(617) 426-2000
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The 89-year-old hotel in May wrapped a multi-year, $100,000,000 renovation, including a revamp of its 1,060 rooms and its corridors.

10. The Lenox Hotel - Boston

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61 Exeter St
Boston, MA 02116
(617) 536-5300
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The 214-room inn is pretty much smack dab in the middle of Back Bay, near the Prudential shops and Copley Square as well as the South End. This is a solid Plan A for tourists.

11. The Fairmont Copley Plaza

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138 Saint James Ave
Boston, MA 02116
(617) 267-5300
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The 102-year-old granddaddy of Boston hotels, the 383-room Fairmont Copley is enviable for its higher-end aura: the entryway has been known as Peacock Alley (as in strutting) since the Jazz Age and John Kennedy’s grandfather, then the mayor of Boston, threw a party for 1,000 when the hotel opened.

12. Copley Square Hotel

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47 Huntington Avenue
Boston, MA 02116
(617) 536-9000
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The 125-year-old hotel completed a $2.5M redesign in the spring, leaving the 243 rooms and the common areas with a more modern look and feel. Plus, the Copley is right there.

13. Colonnade Boston Hotel

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120 Huntington Ave
Boston, MA 02116
(617) 424-7000
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It's supremely difficult to trump this 285-room hotel's location: across from the Prudential Center (and all that shopping), less than a mile from the Hynes Convention Center, and a mile from Fenway.

14. Eliot Hotel

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370 Commonwealth Ave
Boston, MA 02215
(617) 267-1607
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This more than 50-year-old boutique in Back Bay’s western hinterlands always garners props for its quiet elegance. Time magazine once called it "small and traditional without being stuffy." Kind of like Boston itself, eh?

15. The Verb Hotel

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1271 Boylston St
Boston, MA 02215
(617) 566-4500
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The 94-room hotel opened in 2014 and replaced a Howard Johnson. The Verb is also near Fenway, but its decor pays homage more to the rock clubs that dotted the Fenway/Kenmore area back in the day.

16. Hotel Commonwealth

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500 Commonwealth Ave
Boston, MA 02215
(617) 933-5000
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Red Sox fan? Married/dating one? This is probably the hotel for you/them. The 245-room hotel near Fenway Park unveiled in December 2015 a new, 96-room wing dedicated to the Red Sox.

17. Hyatt Regency Cambridge

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575 Memorial Dr
Cambridge, MA 02139
(617) 492-1234
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This 470-room hotel is right on the river and perfectly situated for those visiting M.I.T. or tech-heavy Kendall Square. The Charles-side complex has 470 rooms, including 11 suites, and offers plenty of meeting space as well as a 24-hour fitness center. Mostly, though, it's that straddling-Cambridge-Boston-border location

18. The Charles Hotel

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1 Bennett St
Cambridge, MA 02138
(800) 882-1818
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Even though the Charles is usually the most expensive hotel in Cambridge, a visitor can't beat that location—especially if said visitor's visit is connected to Harvard or even to M.I.T. Since its opening in 1984 (it replaced an empty lot), the 294-room inn has been elegant proof that an inn can charge $350-plus a night outside of downtown Boston.

1. Element Boston Seaport

395 D St, Boston, MA 02210

The Element Seaport, which opened earlier this year, is right across the street from the convention center, making it a good bet for people in town for trade shows and the like. Some 180 of its 510 rooms are suites.

395 D St
Boston, MA 02210

2. Aloft Boston Seaport

401-403 D Street, Boston, MA 02210

The Aloft opened in the first half of 2015, and is another option convenient to the convention center. It's also proximate to the Seaport District and its super-fun Lawn on D park.

401-403 D Street
Boston, MA 02210

3. The Envoy Hotel

70 Sleeper Street, Boston, MA 02210

This 136-room, Marriott-branded hotel opened during the summer of 2015 amid Boston's amorphously delineated Innovation District. The minimalist, breezy design of the Envoy fits with that district's vibe.

70 Sleeper Street
Boston, MA 02210

4. The Langham Boston Hotel

250 Franklin St, Boston, MA 02110

The Langham's building started life in 1922 as a Federal Reserve building, and became the Langham as we know it in 2003. Some of the interior, including the soaring ceilings on the second level, reflects this financial pedigree as does its very location in the Financial District. Take heed, Masters of the Universe traveling to Boston.

250 Franklin St
Boston, MA 02110

5. Ames Boston Hotel

1 Court St, Boston, MA 02108

When this 114-room inn opened at the tail end of last decade just north of the Financial District, it was noted for being a hip redo of an 1889 building—a trendy envelope-pusher, that is, about what Boston boutiques can be.

1 Court St
Boston, MA 02108

6. Boston Harbor Hotel

70 Rowes Wharf, Boston, MA 02110

The 256-room, five-star hotel helped change the whole area, though it still has the feel of being out there on the water’s edge in the best and worst senses (i.e. fabulous views, but isolated). It is definitely for those who want an extra-quiet refuge from the city.

70 Rowes Wharf
Boston, MA 02110

7. The Liberty Hotel

215 Charles St, Boston, MA 02114

The former site of the Charles Street Jail way back when, the 300-room Liberty (get it?) is a tad out of the way for business travelers, but perfect for tourists wanting to soak up history in nearby Beacon Hill.

215 Charles St
Boston, MA 02114

8. Godfrey Hotel Boston

505 Washington St, Boston, MA 02111

The 242-key boutique inn officially opened in February in a fast-changing Downtown Crossing (think Millennium Place, Millennium Tower, Roche Bros., etc.). The rooms have a minimalist modern feel, and the Godfrey's likely perfect for tourists and business travelers alike given its central location.

505 Washington St
Boston, MA 02111

9. Boston Park Plaza

50 Park Plz, Boston, MA 02116

The 89-year-old hotel in May wrapped a multi-year, $100,000,000 renovation, including a revamp of its 1,060 rooms and its corridors.

50 Park Plz
Boston, MA 02116

10. The Lenox Hotel - Boston

61 Exeter St, Boston, MA 02116

The 214-room inn is pretty much smack dab in the middle of Back Bay, near the Prudential shops and Copley Square as well as the South End. This is a solid Plan A for tourists.

61 Exeter St
Boston, MA 02116

11. The Fairmont Copley Plaza

138 Saint James Ave, Boston, MA 02116

The 102-year-old granddaddy of Boston hotels, the 383-room Fairmont Copley is enviable for its higher-end aura: the entryway has been known as Peacock Alley (as in strutting) since the Jazz Age and John Kennedy’s grandfather, then the mayor of Boston, threw a party for 1,000 when the hotel opened.

138 Saint James Ave
Boston, MA 02116

12. Copley Square Hotel

47 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02116

The 125-year-old hotel completed a $2.5M redesign in the spring, leaving the 243 rooms and the common areas with a more modern look and feel. Plus, the Copley is right there.

47 Huntington Avenue
Boston, MA 02116

13. Colonnade Boston Hotel

120 Huntington Ave, Boston, MA 02116

It's supremely difficult to trump this 285-room hotel's location: across from the Prudential Center (and all that shopping), less than a mile from the Hynes Convention Center, and a mile from Fenway.

120 Huntington Ave
Boston, MA 02116

14. Eliot Hotel

370 Commonwealth Ave, Boston, MA 02215

This more than 50-year-old boutique in Back Bay’s western hinterlands always garners props for its quiet elegance. Time magazine once called it "small and traditional without being stuffy." Kind of like Boston itself, eh?

370 Commonwealth Ave
Boston, MA 02215

15. The Verb Hotel

1271 Boylston St, Boston, MA 02215

The 94-room hotel opened in 2014 and replaced a Howard Johnson. The Verb is also near Fenway, but its decor pays homage more to the rock clubs that dotted the Fenway/Kenmore area back in the day.

1271 Boylston St
Boston, MA 02215

16. Hotel Commonwealth

500 Commonwealth Ave, Boston, MA 02215

Red Sox fan? Married/dating one? This is probably the hotel for you/them. The 245-room hotel near Fenway Park unveiled in December 2015 a new, 96-room wing dedicated to the Red Sox.

500 Commonwealth Ave
Boston, MA 02215

17. Hyatt Regency Cambridge

575 Memorial Dr, Cambridge, MA 02139

This 470-room hotel is right on the river and perfectly situated for those visiting M.I.T. or tech-heavy Kendall Square. The Charles-side complex has 470 rooms, including 11 suites, and offers plenty of meeting space as well as a 24-hour fitness center. Mostly, though, it's that straddling-Cambridge-Boston-border location

575 Memorial Dr
Cambridge, MA 02139

18. The Charles Hotel

1 Bennett St, Cambridge, MA 02138

Even though the Charles is usually the most expensive hotel in Cambridge, a visitor can't beat that location—especially if said visitor's visit is connected to Harvard or even to M.I.T. Since its opening in 1984 (it replaced an empty lot), the 294-room inn has been elegant proof that an inn can charge $350-plus a night outside of downtown Boston.

1 Bennett St
Cambridge, MA 02138