On Newbury Street, Boston // Shopping, frozen yogurt and public garden

Newbury Street Boston

When Manu went alone in Boston for the first time, last September, to do interviews for a job, he brought me pics of the city when he get back from Paris. There were a lot of photos of Newbury Street, Manu thought it was nice, and told me we could live there (it was before knowing of the renting prices). Just by looking at his pictures, I couldn’t figure out how the street really was. I looked at them a lot, trying to find some random detail that helped me know if I really wanted to move and live there.

Newbury StreetWithout any particular reason, I let myself be seduced by a kind of ‘Boston Calling’. When I went in this street for real, the first time, I thought it was more original and more friendly than I’ve imagined. Newbury Street is located in the very chic Back Bay, it’s always introduced in tourist guides as THE street to go shopping, drink a coffee or go out for a brunch. Actually, I pass through this street a lot, but I never really take the time to look at it…

Newbury Street

Back Bay is the only ‘well organised’ area in Boston (I imagined before that every cities in US looked like a giant checkerboard). The rest of the city is more chaotic, which made it paradoxically easier for me to know where I am. At the beginning I couldn’t understand how worked this ‘net of streets’, but as nobody says Let’s meet at the 250 of Newbury St. but instead some strange code : Let’s meet between Fairfield et Newbury, I realized that in order to have a social life here I have to be able to decode this system (and to be able to understand when a friend – American – told me with a strong accent the names of the streets, that’s not easy).

In Back Bay, I was told that streets are organized in alphabetic order: close to the public garden there’s Arlington Street, and then, Berkeley, Clarendon, Darthmouth, etc. That doesn’t make sense at the beginning. And then I realized that you have to cross these names with names of big avenues (that cross all the city, you get used to these names: Commonwealth, Beacon St., etc.). #Battleship

Building Newbury Street

Architectural style is Boston is pretty eclectic. European standards can’t simply be applied. There’s a lot of buildings that I can qualified as: Disney Land castles, spooky doll houses, charmless cubes. On Newbury, it’s very diverse too, even if there’s a lot of brownstone buildings, as on the picture above. This building shows this bizarre style-mixed: window as an Indian temple, stairs as-in-New-York and castle crenels.

NB : Architecture School of Boston is on Newbury St. 

Old South Church - Copley

Close to Newbury St, on Boyston St, this church shows too this architectural style, a bit confusing for me. But nice!

Shopping in Newbury Street

Shopping in Newbury StThere’s a lot of restaurants on Newbury St., but we don’t hang out very often in this area. The true entertaining stuff of the street consists in all the shops. There’s a very chic side (Chanel, Hermès, Donna Karan) and on the other side American labels not represented in France, so I’m glad I can go there (Urban Outfitters, Madewell, Anthropology…). Three levels for each shop: level garden, first and second level.  So even if the street is pretty short, it’s very concentrated. You can see that sellers show outside clothes. I saw that on the pictures of Manu in September, and I found it super strange and creepy. But now, I just like it!


Pinkyotto, I like this shop, but I’ve never bought anything there yet. I’m waiting for a shopping associate.

Signs / Newbury St

Sports clothes (I have to admit it: I’ve bought clothes dedicated to sport, not random cotton clothes from H&M; I have to be careful, I’m starting to wear them on the street and even find them very comfortable).

A hat shop I really like to go in… 

Sewer machines Newbury St


Canvas made at the image of Bostonian sports teams (when he was young, Manu has a passion – no longer secret – for canvas ; my question is now: can we establish the right to do canvas in public places? It’s easy, relaxing, and even if it’s ugly when it’s done, you can still offer them to the family because it’s hand-made).

Frozen Yogurt -  Pinkberry

Yummy! We hade a frozen yogurt break at Pinkberry. I’ve never tried it before (the closest thing I had was Sunday at Mac Donald, but it’s more creamy). I’ve been reasonable and had a natural taste for the yogurt, and fresh fruits for the toppings (okay, and bites of brownies). Express review: (1) it’s very cold (2) this has not a great culinary interest (3) it may be very addictive. I passed in front of the shop 2 days ago and my mind went crazy, I wanted a frozen yogurt.

Boston Common

At the end of Newbury Street there this big public garden, the Common. When we arrived in January, we thought it was sad, even in some ways ugly (the grass was gross, trees looked dead and there wasn’t any flower. Okay, I know, that’s how winter looks like). But now with flowers, leaves, etc, I’m loving it. And there’s a lot of cute squirrels and “swan boats“.

Swan Boats - Boston Common

Writer, organizer and social media-ter for my own blog. When I'm not in front of my laptop, I'm organizing guided tours of Boston with my own company "Boston le nez en l'air". It's in French!

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  • super reportage, merci du voyage 😉
    et c’est fou car j’ai quasiment la même photo des machines à coudre, prise à Londres sur Portobello ! les origines culturelles 😉
    bises et bonne nuit !

    • Reply May 14 2012


      J’en ai une aussi à Paris… Rue Etienne Marcel ! Je trouve toujours ça joli ces machines à coudre.

  • Reply May 13 2012

    La Grande Blonde

    Chouette visite ! Ca donne decidement envie d’aller faire un tour par Boston…
    Et puis, raaaah ! faire du shopping, aussi (oui, parce qu’on a beau dire, Canberra, c’est pas la capitale du shopping, vraiment >_<). Mieux, faire du shopping avec un frozen yogurt. M'en vais revasser tout l'apres-midi !
    (quant au canevas, on n'y pense jamais assez…) (j'avoue, c'est mal, j'ai ri)

    • Reply May 14 2012


      Je vais faire un “tuto” canevas très bientôt alors.

  • Reply May 14 2012


    Eh bien, j’irai bien faire un tour à Boston, maintenant :)

  • Reply May 14 2012


    Que de souvenirs !! Je rêve d’y retourner .. Merci pour cet article super chouette !!
    A propos, Boston Common est connu pour être le premier jardin public public créé aux Etats-Unis d’Amérique 😉

  • Reply May 14 2012


    J’essaie de pas faire de commentaire orienté pour une fois: Super article, parc sympa, boutiques alléchantes (voilà pour le prétexte) mais surtout: Le Frozen yoghurt est GRAVE addictif (on se refait pas) !

    • Reply May 14 2012


      Prépare ta liste de choses à faire / manger cet été !!!
      ‘hihihi” petit cri hystérique

  • Reply May 14 2012


    Wouaaah, le bandeau, il change tout le temps !! Génial !!

  • Reply May 15 2012


    Chaque fois que je lis ton blog j’ai envie de prendre mes prochaines vacances aux US… Je suis superfan! Un gros bisou pour toi, bella.

    • Reply May 15 2012


      Hola Adriana!! Contente de ton petit message, et contente que ça te plaise! Je t’embrasse, et ta petite fille aussi :)

  • Reply May 23 2012


    Très belles photos, j’adore.
    Une petite ressemblance avec certaines rue de Washington, coté George Town.

    • Reply May 23 2012


      C’est bon à savoir ! Je ne suis pas encore allé à Washington… mais bientôt !

  • Reply Aug 8 2013


    Coucou Mathilde, tout d’abord merci pour ce blog très riche sur la région ! Nous sommes actuellement à Boston pour 4 jours et tes articles m’ont bien aidés à préparer notre visite. Une mention spéciale pour Pinkberry, on en a croisé un dans North end hier et j’ai fais tilt en repensant à ton article, ayez je suis addict !

  • Reply Aug 25 2014


    Superbe Blog!!!
    Je prépare actuellement mon voyage pour Boston courant du mois de novembre et ton blog me rend encore plus impatiente!!! :-)
    En tout cas, un grand merci de prendre la peine de partager tes infos, photos, astuces.

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