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Intercontinental Boston Review. Good Hotel. Excellent downtown location

The Intercontinental Boston is a high quality hotel in a prime downtown location. Large rooms, river views, good quality food and a stylish design make the hotel an excellent base for visiting Boston

What I liked

  • Excellent downtown location in the heart of the business district
  • Large rooms. Many with Harbour view
  • High quality breakfast with fresh fruits, cook to order options and buffet
  • Executive lounge offered premium alcohol during evening canapes
  • Hotel had spa and swimming pool

What could be improved

  • Not a ‘destination hotel’

Booking

I booked 2 nights using the intercontinental ambassador free night certificate, and a further 2 nights using 140,000 IHG points. Intercontinental Ambassador is the membership scheme for Intercontinental Hotels. It costs $200 per year, and comes with the following benefits:

  • 1 Complimentary Weekend Night Certificate
  • Room upgrade
  • 4pm check out
  • $20 credit at Intercontinental Hotels
  • Platinum Status with IHG


The main benefit for most people is the Weekend Night Certificate. You pay for 1 weekend night and get a 2nd night free.

I paid for 1 night in a room with club Intercontinental Benefits using my certificate for $548 and got a 2nd night for free. The Club Intercontinental rate provides access to the executive lounge, where breakfast and evening drinks/canapes are complimentary. As I was traveling with my wife and daughter, this represents pretty good value.

The location

The hotel is located in a prime downtown waterfront location. 15 minutes taxi from the airport and right in the centre of the business district. Boston is pretty small, so the hotel is a good base for exploring all of Boston.

The hotel is 2 minutes away from Boston Children’s museum, which is very good fun for under 10’s. My daughter had an amazing time there!

We travelled around mainly using the subway, which is efficient and well priced. The downside is that they transport system is certainly dated, and due an upgrade! I spent one day In Harvard, and it took about 20 minutes to travel there via Subway.
 

The Hotel

The Hotel is a 5* business hotel rather than a destination hotel. It is designed to be a luxury base for people to visit Boston, either for Business or as a tourist. When you return to the hotel, you can expect to find high quality accommodation, food and amenities. However, you would not want to spend an extended amount of time here, as there is not much to do.

The lobby was grand and impressive, as you can see in the above slideshow.

The hotel contained a spa on the 2nd floor. There was also a small pool – much appreciated, since many luxury hotels in this part of the world don’t have pools.

The room

As an IHG Platinum Ambassador, I was upgraded to a room overlooking Boston Harbour. I am a sucker for a good view, so I really appreciated this. However, Boston Harbour is not the most pretty, as you can see in the slideshow above. The room had the following features:

  • 2 double beds
  • Harbour View
  • Desk overlooking the Harbour
  • Keurig Coffee machine
  • Large bathroom with separate bath and shower


Overall, my impressions of the room were positive. It was large with a nice view, and the bathroom was spacious and impressive too. I took a few images, and you can check them out in the slideshow above.
 

Executive Lounge. Breakfast

The Club Intercontinental room allowed me to have breakfast in the Club lounge. The executive lounge was on the smallish side, but this was not a problem as it was never busy when I was there.

I had breakfast with the club lounge for 2 days and enjoyed it. There were a range of options

  • Cook to order eggs
  • Cook to order pancakes
  • Fresh fruit. Excellent quality
  • Oatmeal
  • Hot items. Bacon. Egg. Sausages. Bacon etc
  • Cold cuts
  • Fresh yoghurt
  • Fresh nuts
  • Juices. Not freshly squeezed
  • Drip coffee
  • Separate coffee machine


I really enjoyed the breakfast. The fruit, nuts and yoghurt in particular we're very fresh and very high quality.

I had the drip coffee and thought it was absolutely terrific - some of the nicest coffee I have had in a hotel. They also provided takeaway cups, which I though was a nice touch, and not very common in an executive lounge.

I had the pancakes and found them to be very good. I also had the oatmeal on one day, which was thick and tasty

Executive Lounge. Evening Canapes

Evening Canapes are served in the lounge from 5pm to 7pm, and consisted of:

  • 2 hot snacks
  • Cold snacks. Potato chips and nuts
  • Full bar


The food selection was very disappointing. Sometimes you can get something approaching your dinner in an executive lounge - but not here. Simply spring rolls and cheese sticks, i.e. readymade oven food. I can only assume that they serve bad food, as they want people to buy food at their restaurants. In reality, I think that the effect of this is that people wont view club rooms as good value for money. The extra cost of a club room was about $150. 

The alcohol selection was pretty good. The spirits were premium, and included belvedere vodka and Johnny Walker Black Label. Both items retail for around $40.

Conclusion

The Intercontinental Boston is an excellent business hotel. They do all the essentials of a 5* hotel very well – good breakfast, large rooms and excellent location. What marks out this hotel compared to other luxury hotels in Boston is its excellent waterfront location

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