Luxury Hotels: Imagine being able to spend the night in a former jail, walk along the same catwalk where prison guards held watch and dine in a restaurant that pays homage to its prior prison days — that's exactly what you will do at The Liberty Hotel, which was recently transformed from its former self, the Charles Street Jail. Located at the foot of Beacon Hill and across from the Esplanade (which hosts the Boston Pops Fourth of July concert), The Liberty Hotel's impressive architecture and modern improvements have made this gem receive accolades for being one of the best hotels in town.
As soon as you approach the former-prison-turned-luxury-property, the first thing you will immediately notice is the impeccable service and effortless charm of the welcoming staff. When you first pull into the boutique hotel, you will be greeted by a friendly valet attendant, who will promptly assist with your luggage and whisk away your car. Take the escalator up to the impressive 90-foot brick exposed lobby entrance on the second floor where you will check in at the front desk and be greeted with a glass of Champagne.
There are still subtle reminders throughout the property that you are staying in a prison, including the aptly named restaurant Clink and bar Alibi, as well as the do not disturb notification on the guestroom doors, which instead offers an enormous key on a ring with a note marked "solitary." The Liberty displays a nice amount of personal touches, including a digital phone display with your name in the guestroom. The staff goes above and beyond to ensure you have an exceptional stay and even for those with a four-legged friend in tow, providing a fresh pet treat in the room upon arrival.
Be sure to make a reservation at the on-site restaurant, Clink, for an authentic incarceration experience. It is here in this brick exposed cell with iron clad walls that separates diners, where you can nosh on everything from artisan cheeses to seafood and fresh pasta while sipping on a fun specialty drink like the Libertea made with Grey Goose vodka and strawberry iced tea. The tuna tartare was enormous and extraordinarily fresh while the thinly sliced Fra'Mani salami served as the perfect prelude to watching the chefs in the open kitchen prepare papardelle pasta with lamb ragu, one of Clink's signature dishes. After sampling the pear and cranberry cobbler, head downstairs to Alibi for some late night libations or a drink at Lydia Shire's restaurant, Scampo. The 298-room hotel has rooms available above Clink but since the hotel comes to life at night with a see-and-be-scene trendy crowd, be sure to request a room in the newly added tower to ensure a good night's sleep.
There is something going on here almost every night of the week. In the fall and winter, there is a chef demonstration with wine pairing on Mondays; an art exhibition and wine tasting on Tuesdays; a jazz trio on Wednesdays; a high energy fashion show on Thursdays and a group fitness class on Saturdays. The Liberty Hotel is located at 215 Charles Street, Boston, MA 02114. For reservations or more information, call (617) 224-4000 or visit www.libertyhotel.com.