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USA  /   Massachusetts  /   Boston Hotels

The Charles Hotel

One Bennett Street, Cambridge, MA, USA
Neighborhood: Harvard Square


  • Rooms : 19.0
  • Service : 18.5
  • Public Spaces : 18.5

From 26 Guest Reviews

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From $166
Check availability as rates may vary for dates. Best rate guaranteed.

The Charles Hotel is a rare thing: an Ivy League hotel nestled in between Harvard and Radcliffe. Certainly with its red brick institutional exterior it’s practically part of the campus. Inside, however, it’s far from dormitory standard. The Charles Hotel is very Boston, with red apples at the front desk, burgundy armchairs, Shaker furniture, denim blue pillows, and pots of fresh flowers in your room. It’s comfortable enough for every brand of diva, from Barbra Streisand to Christina Ricci. Good news Barbra. Walls at the Charles are astoundingly thick, so if you’re staying in the Presidential suite, you can practice on its baby grand until dawn.

Though it’s marvelous year round, the Charles, like a true Yankee hotel, is best appreciated in winter. That’s when you can fully take in the cozy atmosphere and the shortbread and chamomile tea that they give you at turndown. The presence of a lap pool is unexpected, but beware of the strict timetable - especially for kids. There’s also a library with over 500 books, and room service will pick up any titles you’re after at Wordsworth, the local bookstore. But don’t let the old fashioned fixings deceive you. The Charles is one of the most technologically forward of hotels and the first to incorporate Palm Pilot technology into its systems. With your Palm you not only can book a room, you can also choose your sheets and pillows or book a treatment at the spa. While you’re at it, make sure to book a table at Rialto, the restaurant all of Cambridge is talking about. Chef Jody Adams is young, photogenic, talented, and reportedly saving the reputation of Boston cuisine.

The Charles does come at an Ivy League price, but nowhere else will make you feel so completely part of your bookish, slightly precious locale. They’ll even hook you up with an alum to give you a tour of the university. But for the true Cambridge experience, you have to brunch at Henrietta’s, where Nobel winners from Harvard and MIT gossip over granola and waffles. (David Mamet loves the place so much he’s written a book about it.) Guaranteed, it will be some of the most stimulating conversation on the East Coast before ten o’clock AM. Oh, and the food’s not so bad either.

  • The Charles Hotel
  • One Bennett Street
  • Cambridge, MA, USA
  • Neighborhood: Harvard Square

Hotel amenities and services

  • 24 hour front desk
  • Bar
  • Bicycle rentals nearby
  • Free wi-fi
  • Indoor swimming pool
  • Library
  • Luggage storage
  • Pets allowed (charges apply)
  • Restaurant
  • Valet parking (charges apply)

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