Looking for an authentic Boston travel experience? It starts with your hotel. How to stay in the real Back Bay.

You don’t travel to Paris to eat Quarter Pounders. No offense to the Golden Arches, it’s just not why you go. You go to experience all that makes Paris uniquely Paris.

So when you come to Boston, MA, a city famed for its blend of Colonial and Old-Europe charm and iconic historic buildings, booking a generic chain hotel is just cheating yourself. If you want to stay in a Bostonian’s Boston, we suggest an intimate boutique hotel tucked into a residential 1800s brownstone neighborhood that could’ve easily fallen out of a Henry James novel – such as our own Newbury Guest House.

Our cozy 35-room boutique hotel is in the heart of Boston’s historic Back Bay neighborhood, renowned for its rows of residential Victorian brownstone homes and considered one of the most beautiful and best-preserved examples of authentic 19th-century urban design in the United States.

Newbury Guest House epitomizes all that is quintessentially Boston from the moment you step into our hotel – and everywhere you look once you step outside it.

Spend some time in our lobby taking in the warm, graceful design, bay windows, antique chess set (and the couple using it, who are as likely to speak French as English). Enjoy conversation, premium espresso, and the comforting creak of our staircase – an intentionally-preserved holdover from our recent $750K renovation – content in the knowledge that you’re experiencing Boston as it was meant to be experienced.

Step outside our front door and the first thing you’ll notice is that your next-door neighbors are locals. They live right here on Newbury Street – our quaint tree-lined thoroughfare of sidewalk cafes, sophisticated boutiques, art galleries, restaurants, and Victorian mansions. You may also notice the absence of neon – when business establishments here hang out shingles, they’re of the literal variety.

If you want to eat like a Bostonian, our seafood is not to be ignored. The topic deserves its own post, so for now we’ll just drop a hint that some of the best oysters, clams, and chowder around are a four-minute walk from our door at Atlantic Fish Co.

And speaking of walking: Few people drove cars in James’ day, and Boston still has one of the nation’s lowest rates of car ownership. Newbury Guest House is in the middle of the city’s most walkable neighborhood, steps from the landmarks that define Boston and its unique character: Trinity Church (1733); Boston Public Gardens (1837); Boston Common (the oldest city park in the U.S.); Museum of Fine Arts; the Charles River Esplanade, the Boston Marathon finish line; and Fenway Park, opened in 1912 and home of the Boston Red Sox since 1953.

Of course if you really want to live like a local, your best bet is to talk to a few. Our friendly (if opinionated) staff is happy to share insider, real-deal recommendations on the best ways to get the most Boston out of Boston. Book the right hotel, and all you’ll need is a comfortable pair of shoes.