Tremont Street, Boston
Written by Necee Regis
In Boston’s South End, Tremont Street, with its trendy boutique shops, chef-owned restaurants, cafés, and historic architecture, is a favourite haunt of residential design consultant Louis Ashman.
The South End was created by landfill in the 1840s on what was a narrow isthmus connecting Boston to the mainland of Massachusetts. In the 1850s, London-style squares with brick bow-front townhouses were built to attract the mercantile class. After suffering economic setbacks in the mid-20th century, the South End today has blossomed into an upscale creative enclave that is home to the largest district of Victorian terraced houses listed on the US National Register of Historic Places.
Louis Ashman loves visiting “great restaurants, shopping, and boutique-y places” on Tremont Street before detouring to his other favourite shops, strolling a triangular route through the South End’s warren of tree-lined streets.
“It’s literally a 10-minute walk. At all these places I can stop in and have a quick conversation with people. It’s like visiting with my design friends.”
On Tremont Street, SAULT New England is a “very friendly” classic and vintage clothing store for men. It’s “lumberjack-chic” with one-of-a-kind colognes and stylish accessories. Next door, Twelve Chairs offers a curated collection of vintage and new home furnishings, accessories, and antiques. It’s also an interior design studio, presided over by co-owner Roisin Giese.
Multi-ethnic restaurants and cafés dot the neighbourhood. Aquitaine Boston, an elegant bistro-style place with traditional French cuisine, serves a warm beet salad that is “unbelievable”.
Union Park Street, best known for its oval park with lotus-flower cast-iron fountains and arching elm trees, leads to Hudson, a shop of “visual eye candy” featuring home accessories, lamps, lighting, cards, and candles.
Garage Saleon Waltham Street is a high-end consignment shop. “I find amazing deals there on furniture and home accessories. Maria always has a big smile.” Meander to Shawmut Avenue to find Farm & Fable, a rustic shop selling vintage cookbooks and kitchenware.
Back on Tremont Street, “Sit by the fireplace with your Italian coffee and pastries at Caffè Nero. It’s often crowded but you can always find a seat.”
Louis says, “What’s nice about the South End is it’s a mix of incomes, races, and ethnicities. And it’s great for anyone who likes to look at architecture.”
Boston native Louis Ashman is a residential design consultant with a focus on space planning and design management. Winner of the 2016 Best of Boston award for space planning, his recent work was featured on the cover of Boston Magazine. No project is too large or small for Ashman, who aims to help his clients solve design puzzles while making them happy.
Distance: 10,517 km
Flight Time: 13 hours, 45 minutes