A team of Oyster reporters spent weeks exploring 48 top hotels in Boston. We slept in the beds, ate in the restaurants, tested the service, and scoped out the neighborhoods, all with an eye toward selecting the most distinguished properties. Here’s a list of our favorite pet-friendly hotels.
The enthusiastically pet-friendly Hotel Marlowe, a playful Cambridge property with quality service, an array of free perks, and a "discovery" theme, loves all pets -- and we mean all. It has even hosted a penguin and a sloth. More conventional four-legged guests can use the dog bowls with food and water outside the entrance, and their owners can order treats for their beloved pals from room service. Pets stay free of charge, and after five visits they receive a lunchbox full of goodies. The staff orders extra-special pet treats, such as a pet birthday cakes, from their "preferred dog treat shop" Polka Dog Bakery.
A 60-room hotel with exquisite service, a genteel but easy-going vibe, and a beautiful location in residential Beacon Hill, XV Beacon treats pets (under 30 pounds) with the same personalized attention it gives pet owners. A donation to MSPCA Angell Memorial Hospital is requested in lieu of a fee, and furry guests receive dog beds, bowls (the water bowl gets refilled during the nightly turndown service), and healthy homemade dog biscuits. Plus, it's just down the road from the Boston Common, a 52 acre park with a section where dogs can run off the leash during designated hours.
Also just a short walk from the Boston Common, the Nine Zero Hotel welcomes pets at no extra charge, and provides special amenities such as bowls, pet beds, a pet room service menu, and welcome dog cookies.
This 112-room boutique with 1940s-inspired decor welcomes pets of all shapes and sizes free of charge with free dog treats in the lobby, framed greetings with the pet's name, and amenities like cages, food and water bowls, and doggie beds. Room service features a special menu "For the Pampered Pet" that includes an 8-ounce sirloin with Kibble and gourmet dog or cat food.
The Mandarin Oriental is a fantastic luxury option to bring your pet -- as long as your pet is a tiny lapdog (the weight limit is an ungenerous 20 pounds). Your lapdog stays for free, though, and gets a pet bed, feeding bowl, a Petmate Deluxe Fresh Flow water bowl that automatically refills with purified, oxygenated water, and a choice from an assortment of toys.
The opulent Fairmont Copley allows pets of any size for a daily fee that is reasonably low compared with those at most properties that allow pets, and food and water bowls are provided. Guests can also take the hotel's "canine ambassador" Catie Copley, a five-year old black Labrador retriever, for a walk (except on Mondays, Catie's day off). You can find her luxuriating on her doggie bed in the palatial lobby next to her personal business cards.