The Liberty, a Starwood Luxury Collection Hotel, Boston
What We Love
- Prime downtown Boston location
- Free bicycles, Saturday yoga, and a Running Concierge (depending on the season)
- "Liberty Affairs," a full range of weekly on-site social events (including Gallery Night Tuesdays, Fashionably Late Thursdays and Fall Fitness Saturdays)
What To Know
- 18 rooms are in the original jail itself, while the other 280 are in the new, modern building
- There's a young, hip vibe; Alibi Bar & Lounge is busy late into the evening
- The fitness room is on the small side, and there’s no pool or spa
- Free WiFi and overnight shoeshine service
- The hotel is pet-friendly and nonsmoking
- Free WiFi
- Parking On Site
- Room Service
In just a few years the Liberty Hotel has become Boston’s most talked-about property and one of the most unique on the National Register of Historic Places. Dual escalators separated by a contemporary mosaic rise to the jail’s central octagonal rotunda — now the bustling lobby. Complementing the original granite exterior, tiers of wrought iron and weathered brick fully envelop the space. The lobby is in a five-level, 90-foot atrium, and the space is illuminated by chain-link chandeliers and natural light filtered through elaborate ocular windows and three-story glass panes. Burgundy, black and white couches and fabulous chairs set a tone of warmth and splendor.
Bed and Bath
In the adjoining tower’s guestrooms, the focus is on details such as four-fixture baths and superfine linens. In some rooms floor-to-ceiling windows look out at the crossroads of Boston and Cambridge, where sailboats fade into the horizon. In all cases, the rooms themselves are elegant, technologically up to date and delightfully comfortable. The ubiquitous prison theme is reflected in the “Solitary” key rings placed on doorknobs in place of “Do Not Disturb” signs.
In the main building, the prison theme is ever present. The Clink restaurant uses the vestiges of original cells as the backdrop for its modern American cuisine, which is heavily focused on local and sustainable ingredients. Downstairs, at Alibi Bar & Lounge, patrons can raise their glasses and sip cocktails in the Charles Street Jail’s drunk tank.
In the Area
Renowned restaurant Scampo is adjacent to the hotel’s entrance and serves renowned lobster dishes that showcase chef Lydia Shire’s culinary ingenuity. Take in the beauty and prestige of Beacon Hill and the Italian charm of the North End by walking through Boston’s famous neighborhoods on the Freedom Trail, still the best way to learn about Boston’s rich history. With a recent expansion that added 53 galleries, the Museum of Fine Arts houses a vast and varied collection from all over the world. (Don’t miss the Buddha room.) A visit to the country’s first restaurant, Union Oyster House (circa 1826), is a must on any trip to Boston. Shuck ’til you drop or feast on lobster, New England fish cakes or any of the fresh fish specialties at yet another National Historic Landmark.
How to Get There
I live in Boston, but I chose to spend the night at the Liberty Hotel to celebrate my 50th birthday. The Liberty used to be the old Charles Street Jail, so it had a jailhouse theme I was curious to see. Well, it certainly didn't disappoint. The lobby of the hotel was huge, with a round stained-glass window which I think was original to the jail. Stone walls, also remnant of the old jail, made up part of the decor. It's hard to describe the hotel and it's prison theme, but it was chic, beautiful, and delightfully quirky. The room we stayed in was pretty standard for a good hotel, nothing special. The bathroom was big, the toiletries were good quality, and the beds were soft.
We started our evening at Alibi, the hotel's trendy bar (there are also two restaurants in the hotel too). Metal cell bars graced the walls of the bar, and like the lobby, it was tasteful and unique. The drink menu was absolutely outstanding, filled with creative (but expensive) drinks. My husband and I each got a cocktail and were impressed. After drinks, we headed to the Catwalk. The Catwalk is a guest-only area that encircles the lobby, so you can watch the comings and goings as you enjoy drinks or dinner. The Catwalk was interesting: you could order food from their flagship restaurant Clink, or you could get food from their more casual menu. The Catwalk also had a great drink menu, and we enjoyed drinking and eating while looking down on a busy Friday night. My husband ordered a seafood dish from Clink, and I got an appetizer of dumplings and a main course of burger and fries which were quite good. We were too full to eat dessert so we got it to go. My husband got a tasty cheesecake and I got a collection of French macarons. I rarely see macarons on a dessert menu, and thought it was a classy touch.
The next morning we had a late breakfast at Clink. The Eggs Benedict was perfect.
I left the Liberty feeling like I had a very special treat for my milestone birthday. I highly recommend spending a night or two at the Liberty Hotel.
I would like to start off with that the staff were helpful, friendly and professional. The concept of the hotel was executed beautifully. Unfortunately, all if the wonderful things about this hotel were negated by the bad. The liberty advertised itself as a luxury hotel. NO where on there website does it list that it turns into a nightclub on Friday and Saturday nights. It should be made transparent and blatantly clear when you book this high priced hotel that its lobby turns into club. My husband and I came to Boston for an event at TD garden. We entered on Friday night after working all day and then traveling to Boston from out of state. We were met by excessively loud music. It was to the point that I had to shout in my husband's ear to say anything. We had booked a king suite. The staff were kind enough to automatically change our room to a two queen bed room because they said we would not be happy with our room as it was right above the nightclub. The next evening when we returned from the event. We had to push our way in to the building because of the people huddled at the entrance trying to enter the club. We made it into the lobby and then had to fight the crowds in the lobby. There were spilled drinks everywhere; people were fighting around us; and after the sea of people there were multiple people hanging out by the elevators. People were trying to sneak up the elevators. There was NO security. Yes you have to use you key card to make the elevator move but if hotel guests are going to their room there is no one stopping someone from jumping on the elevator. Which is exactly what happened to us. As we approached the elevator there was a random guy staring at the elevator. My husband, myself and another hotel guest attempted enter the elevator. The nightclub guest got on as well; he was completely altered by much more than alcohol. The nightclub guest thought the elevator was a bathroom and tried to use it as such. He then randomly jumped out of the elevator. I actually have never felt so unsafe in a hotel. The amount we paid for this luxury hotel was not equivalent to the service that was rendered. As much as I would like to recommend this hotel to people I can not. There were families staying in this hotel and the clientele of the nightclub patrons is frightening. As much as I wish this was an exaggeration it is not just simple facts. I am shocked this is a Marriott hotel.
This is a truly luxury hotel in a historic landmark. It is just a few steps to MGH. The room service prices are extremely high. You can get a good deal for a room rate if you book in advance and have flexible dates. There are many resonably priced fine restaurants in walking distance. The subway station is just across the street. The views are spectacular. I have stayed here twice and would choose it again. It is a Marriott property. Stay here and enjoy the best experience Boston has to offer.
Welcomed and checked out efficiently, comfortable modern room with usual luxury amenities. Valet parking is available and helpful but slow. Breakfast is adequate but not make with love. Scampo's Italian restaurant is not part of the hotel but located in the hotel and contrary to what most people think, we found it horribly noisy and the food totally disappointing except for the super thin crust pizzas. Hotel staff is very helpful.
My room is lovely. Modern, comfy bed, spacious. Cool decor. The woman who checked me in was kind and helpful.
Unfortunately it is extremely loud due to the lobby bar. The music is as loud in my room as I might play music for myself — it is hard to describe how loud it is in a believable way. At the end of a long day, this is not the restful, luxury hotel experience I expected. Be forewarned if you stay on a Friday evening and are hoping for a quiet room to sleep. I would not return based on this experience. Very disappointing.