Oyster Hotel Photos
Oyster Hotel Review
Just outside the Bostonian Boston is the 250-year-old Faneuil Hall Marketplace, a high-traffic market and modern-day mall that's a must-see for travelers to Boston, with countless restaurants, shops, and bars. It's almost always densely populated, and, for some, the thought of staying in the middle of this madness might sound disastrous. But the 25-year-old Bostonian pulls it off perfectly. For one thing, the hotel is recessed by a driveway that enables easy entrance and immediately institutes a feeling of much-needed privacy. (The doormen can be pushy in their pursuit of that privacy -- one stopped me to ask if I was staying in the hotel, and when I said yes, asked if I was sure.)
The rest of this serene feeling stems from a $24-million renovation completed in 2012. The loungy lobby -- despite being so red as to appear straight out of a David Lynch film -- is calm, quiet, and comfortable. It's offset from the front desk to cut down on guests passing through as they check in, and has a fireplace, bookshelves, and free coffee on weekdays. There's a back entrance behind the elevators to the casual New American restaurant, North 26, so guests coming from their rooms don't have to pass through the lobby. North 26 itself offers outdoor streetside seating, interior seating that overlooks the market through a wall of windows, and secluded space in the back for patrons who want to eat in peace -- another nice feature.
Unlike the lobby, with its heavy design elements of gothic reds and blacks, the rooms are modest and simple: mostly earth tones, with harmless splashes of orange. Standard rooms have large windows, a king-size bed, and a glass shower, and an upgrade to Standard Plus gets you a balcony and a bathtub. The gym is small, but the equipment is clean and new, and while there's no real business center, there are a couple of rogue computers near the gym that cost 35 cents per minute and a computer kiosk in the lobby, which oddly takes cash. For tourists looking to stay as close to the action as it gets, but not feel as if they're sleeping right in it, the Bostonian is a pretty good option.
The hotel is directly across from the 250-year-old Faneuil Hall Marketplace and Quincy Market, with about 125 restaurants, shops and bars, along with street performers, and nighttime carriage rides. The area is highly policed and always feels safe. The marketplace is a great spot to begin a tour around Boston, located almost equidistant from Boston Harbor, the North End, and Beacon Hill. The Freedom Trail, a 2.5-mile path through Boston that stops at 16 historical landmarks, passes through the marketplace.
- Across from Faneuil Hall, a historic marketplace and modern-day mall
- Two blocks from Boston Harbor and from the North End, known as Boston's Little Italy
- Three T stops are within a few blocks; 15-minute T ride to Symphony Hall, Museum of Fine Arts, and Fenway Park, home of the Boston Red Sox
- The Financial District and Government Center are one block away.
- Five-minute walk to TD Garden, home of the NHL's Boston Bruins and the NBA's Boston Celtics
- Five-minute walk to the New England Aquarium and the 52-acre Boston Common, the country's oldest park and the start of Boston's 2.5-mile Freedom Trail
- 15-minute cab ride to Boston's Logan International Airport
It's function over form in the nice-size rooms.
The 350-square-foot standard rooms are slightly bigger than average for Boston hotels and they feel it, with thankfully little clutter. A $24-million renovation completed in 2012 may not have brought interesting style to the quarters, but it did bring new furnishings, flat-screens, and bedding. There's a comfortable, pillow-top king-size bed, some classy nightstands with (too) modern lamps, and a small desk. The large windows that overlook the North End fill the room with light. Superior Room upgrades get you a step-out balcony that faces the side or the back of the hotel; Superior Plus Rooms have a balcony that faces Faneuil Hall. Of course, there's a reason they call them "step-out" balconies -- you can barely do just that, take one step onto them.
- $24-million renovation completed in 2012 includes new furniture, wall treatments, 40-inch flat-screen TVs, Sealy pillow-top bedding with Frette linens, and down comforters and pillows.
- Bathrooms in standard quarters have no tubs, just glass showers (Superior Rooms have bathtubs); hotel-brand toiletries provided.
- Daily fee for in-room Wi-Fi.
- Minibar items on sensors; free mini-fridge available on request
- Free daily USA Today
- 24-hour room service is reasonably priced.
Rooms and Rates
The hotel's main drawback is its lack of features; perhaps it suffers from the (mis)conception that its phenomenal location for sightseers will be enough. If you really like staying in the thick of things but you want more inside, the nearby Marriott Long Wharf, next door to the Aquarium and IMAX and less than a five-minute walk to Faneuil Hall, has a pool and a more extensive gym (but it lacks the privacy of the Millennium).
- 24-hour gym is small, though the Precor equipment is new and each piece has its own TV; water, towels, headphones, and fruit provided.
- Perfunctory business center consists of two computers at a table in a 2nd-floor hallway; 35 cents per minute, with free vouchers available at the front desk; computer kiosk in the lobby costs 10 cents per minute.
- 24-hour in-room dining provided by the hotel restaurant, North 26
- Pricey valet parking only, but about average for Boston
- In-room Wi-Fi is charged per day.
- Outdoor courtyard available for events
- Free coffee in the lobby on weekdays
Good choice for families
The Millennium is a good choice for families who want decent-size rooms and a great location in the thick of things. Other than that, there isn't a whole lot of extra features or amenities for kids. The nearby Marriott Long Wharf may offer more, since it has a pool and it's still less than a five-minute walk to Faneuil Hall.
- 350-square-foot standard rooms are slightly bigger than average; one-step upgrade to a Superior gets you two double beds.
- Free cribs; rollaways are charged per night, but can only be added to rooms with king-size beds
- Mini-fridges available on request
- Separate driveway convenient for those with a car and kids; entry and exit is easy.
- Adjacent to Faneuil Hall, a historic marketplace and modern-day mall
- Within a few blocks' walks of several attractions including Boston Common park and TD Garden (home of the Celtics)
- No room charges for children 18 years old and younger who occupy the same room as their parents or guardians, using existing bedding.
- North 26 has a kids' menu.
- 24-hour in-room dining
On-site New American restaurant
Behind the elevators is a back entrance to the hotel's casual, brand-new New American restaurant, North 26. The main entrance to the restaurant is from the street, and, wisely, the restaurant offers street seating, interior seating that overlooks the market through a wall of windows, and secluded space in the back of the restaurant for guests and diners looking to eat in peace. The restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
- Kids' menu available.
- 24-hour in-room dining provided by North 26.
- Lots of restaurants in the immediate Faneuil Hall Marketplace area
A wedding here is simple; the basic wedding package covers just about everything.
- Wedding Size: Up to 100 guests for the ceremony; 150 for a reception
- Extra Fees: There's a ceremony fee, on top of the standard 15 percent service charge, 5 percent "administrative fee," and 5 percent sales tax. Also, note that you have to spend a minimum on food and drinks in order to host a reception in the Seasons Ballroom on a Saturday night.
- Wedding Package: The standard wedding pacakge includes basic decorations (candles, tablecloths and napkins), a wedding photography room, a cocktail hour with passed hors d'oeuvres and an open bar, a three-course dinner with wine, a champagne toast, a custom-designed wedding cake, the help of an in-house wedding coordinator, and a free suite for the bride and groom.
- Ceremony and Reception Locations: Ceremonies take place in the Josiah Quincy Suite; receptions in the Seasons Ballroom
- Food: Among the long list of conventional French and Italian-leaning options, there are also some more innovative dishes like espresso chile dusted New York sirloin and ginger scented salmon with coconut rice. Kids' (chicken fingers and French fries), kosher, gluten-free, and vegetarian menus are also available upon request.
- Drinks: The standard wedding package includes a full open bar for the first hour, but it costs more per person, per hour to keep it open any longer. Otherwise, you can opt for a cash bar or just settle for the wine that comes with dinner. Also, note that there's a fee per bartender (one required for every 100 guests).
- Spa Treatments: While there's no in-house spa, there's an AVEDA salon next door to the hotel.
- Honeymoon Suite: The bride and groom get a free suite as a part of the standard wedding package.
Transport to / from Hotel
|Things to Do||
Mini Bar (with liquor)
Separate Bedroom / Living Room Space
|Address||26 North Street, Faneuil Hall Marketplace, Boston, Massachusetts 02109, United States|
|Also Known As||