22 Centre St., Nantucket
Nantucket is a place of singular beauty—part classic New England idiosyncrasy and part salty, breezy, expansive beaches, with notes of fantastic fresh seafood, long bike rides, and inviting boutiques. And not for nothing: The greatest American novel ever written was inspired by these shores. But you hardly need to be a mad whaling captain to appreciate all that. We fell in love with the Massachusetts island the first time we packed a picnic basket and headed out to the lighthouse, so opening a goop pop-up store here was only logical. We tapped the founder of Ronen Lev to transform a former toy store into goop MRKT Nantucket—and the result is a Shaker-inspired haven filled with tonal neutrals and texture. The kitchen is painted the perfect shade of summer blue from Farrow & Ball. Shelves are well stocked with blush GreenPan cookware, Il Buco Vita serving platters, elegant wine glasses, and all the other accoutrements needed for a wonderful summer cookout. Then pick up the necessities for a post-party wind-down. Nothing beats smearing a thick layer of May Lindstrom’s miracle-working Honey Mud on your face while resting in a tub…
This old whaling island off the coast of Cape Cod is where you go if you want time to slow down—but not necessarily stop altogether. A day can be as mellow or as active as you wish: Pick a beach to lie out on or pick up a SUP; wander aimlessly through the immaculate little streets on a self-guided architecture tour or wander into the Nantucket Historical Association to learn a thing or two. With eighty-two miles of coastline to wade through, countless secret beach dunes to climb, three authentic New England lighthouses to gawk at, and one goop MRKT to work your way through, there’s no risk of getting bored. For a home base, choices are limited (the island is small), but the ones that exist—like the White Elephant (a landmark property right in the center of the harbor), Greydon House (designed by Roman and Williams) and a sprinkling of idyllic bed-and-breakfasts—are all perfect in their own uniquely Nantucket ways.
98 Charles St., Beacon Hill
This is the incredibly beautiful world of Good, a jewelry and home goods store as clean, minimal, and simple as its name.
All Too Human
236 Clarendon St., Back Bay
All Too Human is a concept store that was one of the first to put Boston on the radar of fashion’s most discerning shoppers.
Bobby from Boston
545 Washington St., Lynn
You should know from the outset: Bobby from Boston isn’t in Boston. But the place is that special—we had to include it.
6 Clearway St., Back Bay
The reason to come here is as much for the sneakers—Vans, Nikes, Adidas, Reeboks, Air Jordans—as it is for the sneaker culture. This is the high-end version true connoisseurs wait in line for.
1395 Washington St., South End
The Gallows is a gastropub done right.
102 Waltham St., South End
Stir—a dreamy all-in-one demo kitchen and cookbook store—is the kind of place you pile into with a group on a chilly Wednesday night to learn pasta-rolling and wine-swilling from the masters. A bunch of stools surround the chef’s island, bordered on one side by the open kitchen and on the other by floor-to-ceiling shelves lined with culinary tomes from kitchen gods around the world. Browsing is encouraged. If you’re more the hates-to-cook-loves-to-eat kind, Stir regularly holds tasting menu evenings where you might go with old friends or alone to make new ones. Either way, everyone sits around the intimate table, sharing food and conversation in a setting so cozy, it feels like home.
550 Tremont St., South End
Chef Barbara Lynch has her hometown all figured out. She knows what the Bostonians want: oysters, at least twelve varieties with nearly as many fixings, served in the cozy basement of a classic brownstone, with chatty servers to talk booze and bivalves with. In fact, B & E Oyster moonlights as one of the South End’s most famous wine bars—the seventy-bottle-strong list is that good. Really. We recommend forgoing the Tabasco and dousing your oysters in the restaurant’s prosecco-based mignonette instead. Oh, and book in for a shucking class with the pros—usually held on weekday afternoons, champagne included.
Banyan Bar & Refuge
553 Tremont St., South End
Dim sum, avocado bao, spicy salmon poke, chicken tikka masala, dragon noodles, and kimchi fried rice—the number of dishes we like to order at this Asian-influenced restaurant seems to grow with every visit.
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