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“Has possibilities but definitely needs work”
Review of The Boxer Boston

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The Boxer Boston
Ranked #22 of 83 Hotels in Boston
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersSilver level
Asheville, North Carolina
Level 6 Contributor
184 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 91 helpful votes
“Has possibilities but definitely needs work”
Reviewed 10 May 2014

I have some discomfort dumping too much on The Boxer for a couple reasons. For one thing I only saw the one room I occupied so I don't know how typical it was, particularly since it was a handicapped-accessible room. For another I got a very good price by bidding on Priceline without actually knowing which hotel I would get (although given the location and the number of stars it was pretty much a sure thing The Boxer would be the one if anyone accepted by bid). Had I paid full price or anywhere near it for my room I would have been livid and my rating would have been dramatically lower.

Nonetheless, from my perspective this place failed to meet the 4-star rating it had. Starting with the simple stuff, the location, while not far from Beacon Hill, really isn't on Beacon Hill. It faces the currently inaccessible facade of the JFK Health Services building, a brutalist monument built in the 60s or 70s that is not the finest piece of architecture that any of the multiple government entities in Central Boston has built. You can walk to the back side of Beacon Hill in about 6 or 7 minutes and make it to the side facing Boston Common in about 10-12.

They advertise and promote Valet Parking (to the tune of $44 per night) which is not out of line with the pricing of valet service at other hotels in the center of town. What is out of line is that the service is only available from 7:00 AM until 11:00PM so if you have a late dinner or theater, which in this area is highly likely, you are out of luck. Not only are they unavailable during 1/3 of the day but they are hardly prompt in retrieving your vehicle when they are working. I waited 25 minutes for my car at 9:30 in the morning (no one was ahead of me either) and the desk attendant told me that was actually pretty fast. When the valet finally brought the car he was afraid to parallel park it in the very large available spot at the curb so with other drivers honking for him to get out of the lane he was blocking, I had to insist that he park near the curb. The best he could do was about 4 feet from curbside so getting in on the driver's side was pretty exciting given the amount of traffic whizzing by.

I had called prior to my visit and talked with someone self-described as an assistant manager who told me check in was at 2:00 so I scheduled my arrival to be close to that time. When I got there they told me the room wouldn't be ready until 3:00 (and the desk person who informed me of this and wouldn't check me in was actually very curt to the point of being rude). They offered no suggestion other than to leave my luggage, including shopping bags and clothing on hangers, in a pile in the tiny lobby area and to wait in their bar (and no doubt spend money on drinks to assuage my ruffled feathers).

When I did get to the room it was quite interesting. The design is fairly modern and, to me, very appealing. The room was very small though with no closet at all. The area for clothing storage is an open rack that sits in front of the window (so once you utilize it, you can't reach the mechanism that raises or lowers the blinds) and a single large drawer below it. This makes it very difficult to be tidy in this smallish room.

The bed was wonderful and I will say that I slept quite well although sound was a bit of an issue. I was on the 8th floor right next to the elevator so I heard every conversation of people getting on or off. . .and concluded that they could hear mine. This particular room, though, faces a parking area behind the hotel so what you lose in street view that most rooms have, you gain in night time quiet. I considered this a good trade.

The bathroom, although handicap-equipped was attractive and rather large compared to the room. The shower in these rooms will not keep the water in the shower itself since wheelchairs have to roll in and out. If you get one I would suggest you plan on a major mop up after showering. I was also somewhat disturbed to see many long fine strands of brown hair stuck to the shower walls the first time I used it. Since my hair is thick, short, and grey, I was pretty sure the housekeeping staff had failed to clean up the shower more than cursorily between guests.

I had a fairly late night the first night so you can imagine how displeased I was when the alarm went off at 6:00 in the morning. Since I had not set it, and didn't know how to work it in the dark, I just flailed at it until the alarm stopped. It came on again at 6:10 and again at 6:20 when I gave up and turned on the light to see how to shut the damned thing off. Note to self--check these things to make sure they are not activated. The housekeepers should do this but they don't.

I had to ask for towels more than once and when extras finally arrived, they weren't the bath towels I had requested. I found myself with one more bath mat and two hand towels, none of which had I asked for.

Finch, the bar/restaurant downstairs is modest in both size and offerings but is actually quite good. They have a very decent selection of beverages and a small but interesting menu. The kitchen closes early except on the weekends. . .another fact about which the people at the desk were oblivious. Nonetheless, I had a very nice dinner and enjoyed both cocktails and wine as well as the charming service of bartenders Aaron and Laura. On Wednesdays the wine list suddenly turns into a flat $6 per pour so you can try some of the comparatively pricey wines by the glass for a great price.

In the end I will say that most of the staff are earnest young people who probably just need more training in their jobs, but at this point, there were a lot of gaps in the service. If you don't mind the size of the room it is very comfortable. You will be looking at all your possessions but I had two good nights' sleep (albeit a little short the first morning courtesy of the alarm) in a central location in a truly great city.

Room Tip: 801 faced the rear so it was quiet. 8th and 9th floor rooms have larger windows. 801 was literally...
See more room tips
Green Features: They do ask about reusing towels but because of the vast amount of water that escapes from the handicap-accessible shower most of these would not dry quickly enough to be reused.
  • Stayed May 2014, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank pyrprshr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vanessa V, General Manager at The Boxer Boston, responded to this review, 23 May 2014
Dear pyrprshr,

Thank you for spending the time to relay your experience with the property. I am terribly sorry to hear that some situations failed to meet your expectations and know that we do our absolute best in accommodating all requests (early check in/room requests) and pride ourselves on our service staff who work very hard to continuously exceed the expectations of each individual staying at the hotel. I have absolutely addressed the housekeeping issue with the team and appreciate you bringing it to my attention.

Best,
Vanessa Vitale
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Tampa, Florida
Level 4 Contributor
47 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 May 2014

I stayed here for 3 nights and was nothing short of impressed. The location was perfect for sight seeing and even the subway was nearby for the quick trip to the airport. Its an old building that has been brought to date in every way.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank rudder139
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vanessa V, General Manager at The Boxer Boston, responded to this review, 23 May 2014
Dear Rudder139,

Thank you for staying at the Boxer! I am so happy to hear how impressed you were with our location and hotel design!

Best,
Vanessa Vitale
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Edmonton
Level 5 Contributor
53 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 65 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 May 2014 via mobile

I'll just start by saying how wonderful the staff was, friendly, accomodating and efficient. We stayed as part of a group of families with teens.
I found the rooms and decor clean and modern. Our room 203 was small, (but it is a boutique hotel in a historic building) but had cool bunkbeds!
The bathroom had unique provisions and quality towels.

This hotel is two blocks from TD Garden and a quick walk to markets, the harbour, and Boston Common.

Stayed May 2014
Helpful?
2 Thank is1groovygal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vanessa V, General Manager at The Boxer Boston, responded to this review, 23 May 2014
Dear is1groovygal,

Thank you for your review! Having your group here was great- I am so glad you enjoyed your stay! We certainly pride ourselves on having outstanding service and I am thrilled to hear that we exceeded your expectations. We look forward to seeing you again!

Best,
Vanessa Vitale
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 May 2014 via mobile

Stayed at the Boxer in March. Wonderful boutique hotel. Hotel was clean and our room was very nice. Able to walk to most destinations and find our way around quite easily. Near TD Gardens and an excellent place to stay if you plan on attending an event there.
Great hotel, beautifully done, staff were fantastic.

Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
2 Thank Kayla S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vanessa V, General Manager at The Boxer Boston, responded to this review, 7 May 2014
Dear Kayla,

Thank you for your review! I am so glad that you enjoyed your time in Boston and at the Boxer (most importantly that our team members provided you with what you needed !)

Best,
Vanessa Vitale
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 April 2014

Stayed @ The Boxer for one day/night. Great location if you're going to the North End, TD Garden, etc... Close to T Station as well. The room was clean and well layed out. It had all the amenities we needed and we will be back!

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Karen J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vanessa V, General Manager at The Boxer Boston, responded to this review, 7 May 2014
Dear Karen J,

Thank you so much! Wea re so glad you enjoyed your stay- adn we certainly hope you enjoyed the North End, just a stone's throw away and a vibrant neighborhood- with amazing food!

We look forward to seeing you again!

Best,
Vanessa Vitale
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brighton
Level 4 Contributor
21 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 April 2014 via mobile

We chose this hotel as the reviews suggested it was well located and we prefer independent smaller hotels. Location wise, it didn't turn out to be good for us as the best shopping areas and restaurants were a good half hour walk away (in the Boylston Street area). The hotel is good for the North End area and TD Garden though.

We had a junior suite which was ok size wise, although no storage other than a tiny wardrobe and no hooks for coats. We ended up using the sofa to lay our clothes out, so I wouldn't say this is a great choice for anything other than a short stay.

The bed is really comfy (although like other reviewers we were constantly hitting our shins on the base of the bed which sticks out). The bathroom just had a shower and tiny sink, no bath which was a pain after a busy day. The website doesn't make it clear that no junior suites have baths (I did email before arrival to ask but didn't get a reply).

We ate in the restaurant for breakfast and dinner a few times (no lunch available) and this was really good.

The room was kept really clean, although things weren't always replaced (eg bathrobes, shower gel, mugs).

We paid around $400 a night for the room, and although it was nice we did expect more for that money.

Staff were great!

Also, this isn't to do with the hotel but we got a taxi from the airport which went round the houses and charged us $35. We didn't realise until the return journey that we were overcharged- expect to pay more like $15.

Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
1 Thank ClareB75
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vanessa V, General Manager at The Boxer Boston, responded to this review, 7 May 2014
Dear ClareB75,

Thank you for your candid feedback regarding your stay. Please accept my apologies for a couple of the hiccups- you should have definately received a reply from the Hotel and daily replenishment of our complimentary in room amenties.

On a positive note, we are thrilled to hear that the staff, restaurant and room cleanliness exceeded your expectations and we thank you again for staying with us!

Best,
Vanessa Vitale
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Midcoast Maine
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 April 2014

Friendly staff, knowledgeable concierge and wicked clean rooms. For a smaller scale hotel they use the space wisely. We loved our smartly-appointed King room. The umbrella in each room was so thoughtful and allowed us to still enjoy our day out in the city despite the downpour. We'll be back. Good central location near two T stops (easy walk to North End, Faneuil Hall, Beacon Hill, Common).

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank uniquelymaine
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vanessa V, General Manager at The Boxer Boston, responded to this review, 7 May 2014
Dear uniquelymaine,

Thank you so much for your kind words- we love being adorable- and wicked clean! We will see you again when you head down south from Maine- hopefully without the rain!

Best,
Vanessa Vitale
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Boxer Boston

Property: The Boxer Boston
Address: 107 Merrimac St, Boston, MA 02114
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Massachusetts > Boston
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#15 Green Hotel in Boston
#16 Luxury Hotel in Boston
#20 Family Hotel in Boston
#22 Romantic Hotel in Boston
#26 Business Hotel in Boston
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — The Boxer Boston 4*
Number of rooms: 80
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Also Known As:
Boston Bulfinch Hotel

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