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Ten Boston Stores to Shop on a New England Vacation

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It's no secret that we're pretty proud of our world-class shopping here in the Big Apple. People vacation here for the shopping. While it can seem like the be-all-end-all of stateside brick and mortar, we'd like to shed a little light on some other cities. After all, what are you supposed to do on a weekend out of town—not shop?

Racked Boston has generously provided a list of ten stores that will give us a run for our money, in more than one sense. Pop into Louis for luxury exclusives, sneak behind a secret Snapple door at Bodega to find a world of streetwear, and finish your weekend with a Sunday browse of the SoWa Vintage Market. We're certain you'll head home with something you couldn't find in New York. All ten stores are in handy map form after the jump.


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1. Harvard Book Store

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1256 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
(617) 661-1515
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Block out a chunk of time when you visit this landmark indie bookseller, founded in 1932, which contrary to its name has no affiliation with Harvard University. Readers can pore over the latest bestselling titles or poke around an extensive selection of used books—and then maybe stay for one of the many author lectures in a packed event series schedule. A history of innovation includes eco-friendly bike delivery in the area and a book-making robot to aid in self publishing.

2. Good

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133 Charles Street
Boston, MA 02114
(617) 722-9200
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Good has been a haven for unique buys for over a decade, finally upgrading to a space four times bigger than its original Charles Street location last fall. Come here to seek out collected items ranging from regional home goods designers to transcontinental inspired jewelry and lovely leather bags.

3. Vira Boutique

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107 Charles Street
Boston, MA 02114
(617) 367-0305
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If VIRA feels like it has NYC cool factor, that's because it does—founders Vivek and Radhika brought their FIT backgrounds home to Boston last spring. The lofty space boasts emerging international designers and sought after contemporary labels to excite the cosmopolitan woman.

4. Louis

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60 Northern Avenue
Boston, MA 02110
(617) 262-6100
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Does Louis even need an introduction? As far as the ultimate Boston shopping experience goes, this is it. Nearly 100 years old and having inhabited a historic Back Bay building for the latter part of the twentieth century, the fine retailer moved itself to the waterfront several seasons ago—thus upping the cool factor of this burgeoning district significantly (understatement of the millennium?). Since then, fashion lovers have adored this one-stop-shop for Proenza, intoxicating Diptyque candles, snacks at Sam's, and new hairdos at Salon Mario Russo.

5. Ball And Buck

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144 Newbury Street
Boston, MA 02116
(617) 262-1776
Visit Website
Earlier this year, founder Mark Bollman told GQ that Ball and Buck is the "ultimate place to be a man." Guys come to this subterranean habitat for rugged Americana-inspired threads, kicks, and accessories ranging from mini lighters to limited edition collaborations—all of which are made in the USA. Alongside its commitment to domestic jobs, the team also keeps customers looking fresh at the in-store barbershop open Tuesday—Saturday.

6. The Tannery

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711 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02116
(617) 267-5500
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The Tannery has been a Greater Boston mainstay for decades, and the Boylston Street flagship is just the spot to ogle a variety of footwear from Frye, ritzy outdoor apparel from Canada Goose, and upscale fashion on each store level, our favorite of which is obviously Curated by The Tannery for designers like Viktor & Rolf, Kimberly Ovitz, and Helmut Lang. What really fuels our desire is the sale rack though. So clutch.

7. Bodega

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6 Clearway Street
Boston, MA 02115
(617) 421-1550
Visit Website
The secret Snapple entrance is a rite of passage to many streetwear enthusiasts far and wide—no surprise given its close proximity to the universities. Since the secret is already out, we won't keep mum on the killer selection of all the sneaker favorites, jackets from Schott and Dr. Romanelli, Super and even vintage Cazal eyewear. And if you want a snack, the literal bodega is open too.

8. SoWa Vintage and SoWa Open Markets

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460 Harrison Avenue
Boston, MA 02118
(800) 403-8305
Visit Website
For the past decade, Bostonians have been strolling SoWa's markets on Sundays in search of clever trinkets, unusual decor, locally crafted items, and a cluster of vintage and antique vendors. Indoors you'll find the year-round Vintage Market, with May through October adding on an outdoor farmer's market, food and fashion truck gatherings, and tent upon tent of distinctive buys. Come fall, artisans prep for the notorious Holiday Market.

9. Bobby from Boston

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19 Thayer Place
Boston, MA 02118
(617) 423-9299
People claim this is the best men's vintage shopping around, and a small women's selection is available too. Amazing bags, preppy wears of yesteryear, and a totally cool ambiance are the attraction here.

10. Patch NYC

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46 Waltham Street
Boston, MA 02118
(917) 292-2640
Visit Website
Given their worldwide fame as artists and collaborators with Target and Anthropologie, we dig that the creative pair behind this design dynasty still calls a little South End courtyard home. The headquarters and shop are a warm setting for striking jewelry and home goods, many of which are private label and all of which are keepers.

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1. Harvard Book Store

1256 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA 02138
Block out a chunk of time when you visit this landmark indie bookseller, founded in 1932, which contrary to its name has no affiliation with Harvard University. Readers can pore over the latest bestselling titles or poke around an extensive selection of used books—and then maybe stay for one of the many author lectures in a packed event series schedule. A history of innovation includes eco-friendly bike delivery in the area and a book-making robot to aid in self publishing.
1256 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138

2. Good

133 Charles Street, Boston, MA 02114
Good has been a haven for unique buys for over a decade, finally upgrading to a space four times bigger than its original Charles Street location last fall. Come here to seek out collected items ranging from regional home goods designers to transcontinental inspired jewelry and lovely leather bags.
133 Charles Street
Boston, MA 02114

3. Vira Boutique

107 Charles Street, Boston, MA 02114
If VIRA feels like it has NYC cool factor, that's because it does—founders Vivek and Radhika brought their FIT backgrounds home to Boston last spring. The lofty space boasts emerging international designers and sought after contemporary labels to excite the cosmopolitan woman.
107 Charles Street
Boston, MA 02114

4. Louis

60 Northern Avenue, Boston, MA 02110
Does Louis even need an introduction? As far as the ultimate Boston shopping experience goes, this is it. Nearly 100 years old and having inhabited a historic Back Bay building for the latter part of the twentieth century, the fine retailer moved itself to the waterfront several seasons ago—thus upping the cool factor of this burgeoning district significantly (understatement of the millennium?). Since then, fashion lovers have adored this one-stop-shop for Proenza, intoxicating Diptyque candles, snacks at Sam's, and new hairdos at Salon Mario Russo.
60 Northern Avenue
Boston, MA 02110

5. Ball And Buck

144 Newbury Street, Boston, MA 02116
Earlier this year, founder Mark Bollman told GQ that Ball and Buck is the "ultimate place to be a man." Guys come to this subterranean habitat for rugged Americana-inspired threads, kicks, and accessories ranging from mini lighters to limited edition collaborations—all of which are made in the USA. Alongside its commitment to domestic jobs, the team also keeps customers looking fresh at the in-store barbershop open Tuesday—Saturday.
144 Newbury Street
Boston, MA 02116

6. The Tannery

711 Boylston Street, Boston, MA 02116
The Tannery has been a Greater Boston mainstay for decades, and the Boylston Street flagship is just the spot to ogle a variety of footwear from Frye, ritzy outdoor apparel from Canada Goose, and upscale fashion on each store level, our favorite of which is obviously Curated by The Tannery for designers like Viktor & Rolf, Kimberly Ovitz, and Helmut Lang. What really fuels our desire is the sale rack though. So clutch.
711 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02116

7. Bodega

6 Clearway Street, Boston, MA 02115
The secret Snapple entrance is a rite of passage to many streetwear enthusiasts far and wide—no surprise given its close proximity to the universities. Since the secret is already out, we won't keep mum on the killer selection of all the sneaker favorites, jackets from Schott and Dr. Romanelli, Super and even vintage Cazal eyewear. And if you want a snack, the literal bodega is open too.
6 Clearway Street
Boston, MA 02115

8. SoWa Vintage and SoWa Open Markets

460 Harrison Avenue, Boston, MA 02118
For the past decade, Bostonians have been strolling SoWa's markets on Sundays in search of clever trinkets, unusual decor, locally crafted items, and a cluster of vintage and antique vendors. Indoors you'll find the year-round Vintage Market, with May through October adding on an outdoor farmer's market, food and fashion truck gatherings, and tent upon tent of distinctive buys. Come fall, artisans prep for the notorious Holiday Market.
460 Harrison Avenue
Boston, MA 02118

9. Bobby from Boston

19 Thayer Place, Boston, MA 02118
People claim this is the best men's vintage shopping around, and a small women's selection is available too. Amazing bags, preppy wears of yesteryear, and a totally cool ambiance are the attraction here.
19 Thayer Place
Boston, MA 02118

10. Patch NYC

46 Waltham Street, Boston, MA 02118
Given their worldwide fame as artists and collaborators with Target and Anthropologie, we dig that the creative pair behind this design dynasty still calls a little South End courtyard home. The headquarters and shop are a warm setting for striking jewelry and home goods, many of which are private label and all of which are keepers.
46 Waltham Street
Boston, MA 02118