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Boston trip report - March 5-7, 2004


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Last time Dane Pound and I stayed in Boston for the AE championship, we stayed at the event hotel (the Omni). It was really pricey, with valet-only parking, and everyone wanted a tip. (At one point, we needed the umbrella from the car and actually were unable to get it ourselves. One of the valet parking guys had to get it for us, and then he wanted a tip.)

This trip, we stayed at the Radisson on Stuart Street, which was much more our speed. It’s a really nice hotel, but not as ritzy, and is actually in a nicer location (the theater district). We were just a block from Boston Common and a quick walk to the shopping district on Newbury Street. It was also easy to get to from the Pike, whereas the Omni required negotiating a bunch of one-way streets.

Day 1: We got into town around 4 p.m. Friday and checked into our hotel before heading out to the reception at the Sunset Cantina. There was quite a nice spread – chips and veggies to dip but also wings, chicken strips, knishes and stuffed peppers and a limited number of drinks on the house. We met quite a few Boston-area alum, and a few people from Albany as well, but I didn’t talk to a single person who was actually going to the game! They all thought it was “too late.”

The munchie event was slated to end at 7 p.m., but everyone hung around until the owner got aggravated and started pushing us out around 8.

DP and I then headed over to catch the second half of the Stonybrook game. I have to say, the Seawolf is the lamest mascot I’ve ever seen. What IS a seawolf anyway? Quite a bit of the crowd cleared out after that game, though there were still a few hundred there for the Albany game. I’m sure DP gave a rundown of the actual game so I’ll skip it.

Day 2: Albany lost so there were no more games for us to cheer at and we spent the day sight-seeing. The great thing about Boston is there is so much do to there! We walked through the shopping district in the morning after breakfast at the hotel, but didn’t do a whole lot of buying. The stores are pretty ritzy – Ralph Lauren, etc. There are also quite a few galleries.

As recommended by two of the Boston residents we met Friday, we attempted to eat lunch Saturday at KJ Chang’s, a Chinese restaurant just a block from our hotel. Unfortunately, it was packed, with a wait of almost an hour. We tried to make reservations for that night, but they were already booked from 4 to 10 p.m. So we found a pizza place around the corner and had some really good garlic and chicken pizza. Chang’s is on the list for next time… we’ll just have to plan ahead.

After lunch we hiked down to the aquarium (fun but very kid-oriented), then walked back through Quincy Market, which featured quite a few street performers and guys (tourist ambassadors?) in historical costumes. Lots of nice stores here, too.

Guessing that we wouldn’t be able to find much of anywhere to eat without reservations, we settled on dinner at the hotel's Theatre Cafe, which turned out to be really good.

Day 3: Sunday morning, DP squeezed in a run through downtown Boston and I took a little walk through the Public Garden. I’d love to go back in springtime when everything is blooming, but it was still pretty nice in winter. There are lots of statues, including one honoring the author of “Make Way for Ducklings,” and some interesting trees. I felt really safe walking there alone – there were quite a few people there and no one skeevy looking. A great city!


Good: Radisson Hotel on Stuart Street

Bad: Seawolf mascot, Albany lost

Links: Radisson - Radisson Hotel Boston

New England Aquarium

Greater Boston Tourism Council

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