Tag Archives: public transportation

The South End: Why I Call It Home

As I was walking through the South End on my way to work, I was thinking, “Why do I love this neighborhood?” I walked past groups enjoying coffee on the stoop of their brownstone, I saw people out walking their dogs, moms pushing strollers stopping to say hi, and there was a warmth in the air that has been missing for months. Spring is finally here and the South End seems to shine brighter to me.

So why do I love the South End?

Food and Entertainment: The South End has some of the best restaurants I have ever been to and diverse variety of flavors. Within a 10 minute radius, I can have tapas at Toro, sushi at Oishii Boston, French at Aquitane, Indian at Mela, charcuterie at The Butcher Shop, Ethiopian at Addis Red Sea, and Asian Fusion at Myers and Chang to name a few. The South End also offers restaurants with great bars to have a cocktail and grab a small bite such as The Gallows, Tremont 647, and Franklin Cafe. For live music, food, and drinks, I can go to The Beehive.

Events: The South End holds countless events throughout the year all over the neighborhood. From large fundraisers like the Chefs for Obama and Taste of the South End at the Boston Center for the Arts to local fundraisers at the smaller parks like those thrown by the Friends of Peter’s Park. The first Friday of every month the artists open their galleries late for everyone to enjoy a night of art. On Sundays, the SOWA Open Market is open to everyone to enjoy vendors selling locally made crafts, artwork, jewelry, and baked goods. Another big draw for the SOWA Open Market is the assortment of food trucks preparing all kinds of goodies such as Vietnamese noodle salads at Bon Me, gourmet grilled cheese at Roxy’s Grilled Cheese, and vegetarian/vegan delights at Clover.

Convenience: The South End neighborhood is filled with boutique shops, art galleries, and yoga/dance studios. Along with larger grocers such as Foodies and Ming’s, the South End has smaller specialty food shops like Fromaggio and Siena Farms that focus on local sustainable produce. And if I can’t find what I need in the South End, I can walk 10 minutes or less and be at Shaw’s or Whole Foods in Back Bay. As far as public transportation, I can take the Silver Line that goes along Washington Avenue, the Orange Line at Tufts, Back Bay, or Mass Ave T-Stops, or walk to the Green Line at Copley Square. If I have a long trip, I am minutes from commuter rails at Back Bay Station, the Mass Pike, Interstate 93, or the express route to Logan Airport.


South End brownstoneReal Estate
: The South End is on the National Register of Historic Places as “the largest urban Victorian neighborhood” in the United States, but it is far from being a neighborhood perserved in time. Along with newly constructed luxury buildings, many of these Victorian single family brownstones have been renovated into condos, some of which are available to rent. Some of the brownstone row houses are built around beautiful parks, also called  squares, which are only accessible to owners of the homes around each park. Former industrial warehouses nearby have been converted into modern lofts as well as newly constructed condo buildings that offer amenities such as a concierge, parking garage, and gym available to both owners and renters.

Apart from everything the South End has to offer, I knew that this neighborhood was special the night I moved here. My boyfriend and I took a break from moving to walk our dog and grab some food on Tremont Street. On the way to the store we noticed everyone was smiling and praising our dog on how sweet she is. It had the neighborhood vibe we had been looking for and it felt great to be a part of it. 

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Cars for the Car-Free in Boston

I love being car free in Boston. I feel healthier from walking all over the city. I also feel like I know my city better than I would have driving through it. I find different routes to take, hidden parks, and secret artwork from local artists. However there are certain times when I miss having a car. When I am showing condos for sale and apartments for rent all over the city to one of my clients, I miss having a car. Fortunately, there are others in similar situations and Boston offers many options where I can have mobile freedom while being car free.

Boston has the MBTA public transportation options of buses and trains (known as the T by locals), as well as taxis. These are great when I need to get from point A to point B, but when I have big errands that require multiple stops all over the city or I want to take a road trip to Maine for lobsters on the pier, I am grateful to be a member of Zipcar.

Zipcar offers hybrid options for borrowing a carZipcar is a car sharing program where members can borrow a car when they need it. Sign up for membership online and order a car from a computer or mobile app. They have hundreds of cars located all over the city in multiple makes, models, and colors. In the mood for sporty european luxury? Reserve an Audi or BMW. Need to do some heavy lifting? Grab an SUV or pickup truck. Zipcar also helps you stay green with hybrid options.

Zipcar offers daily rates for trips out of the city and hourly rates for quick errands across town and back. All of the rates include gas and insurance. It’s convenient, easy to use, and they have accessible customer service always available to help.

Another option is to hire a private driver, this may seem decadent but there are times when the focus needs to be on work and not the road. I don’t have it in my budget to hire a full time private driver but there is a way to hire a temporary driver through Uber. Request a town car from any mobile phone either through app or text and they will send the nearest driver. The service texts once with the estimated arrival time and again when the car arrives. The fare is calculated based on distance or time depending on speed and is charged to the credit card on file.

You don’t need to deal with the hassles of owning a car in the city, but you don’t need to forfeit the conveniences of a car either with services like Zipcar and Uber.

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