Christmas shopping in New England
Black Friday, the day following Thanksgiving, is that time of the year in America when you can purchase a TV for as little as 100 US dollars if only you survive the crowds of impatient, hungry for bargains shoppers.
So naturally when I was offered to go on a pre-Christmas shopping trip to the States, I wasn’t too sure how to prepare – working on my elbowing technique and packing a first aid kit sprang to mind initially.
To my relief neither of those was necessary as I discovered a completely different side of pre-Christmas shopping – one involving ridiculous discounts and barely any queues. Enter shopping in New England!
The region is comprised of six states all of which can be easily reached and have connections to the city of Boston. So naturally our trip started off there.
At this time of the year Boston is truly stunning (and freezing too). On our way from Logan Airport, we admired the incredible Christmas illuminations and decorations that were lighting up the city.
We stayed at the impressive Fairmont Copley Plaza. Located in Boston’s historic Back Bay, the hotel is only steps away from the Boston Public Library and the Freedom Trial.
Before our shopping frenzy began officially, we visited The John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, the city’s tribute to the life and leadership of John F. Kennedy. Located on a ten-acre park and overlooking the sea, it is home to some of Jackie Kennedy’s original outfits and belongings (you can purchase Jackie O style jewellery from the souvenir shop).
However if shopping is what you are after, head to the Faneuil Hall Marketplace, Boston’s premier urban marketplace. With 49 shops, 35 food stalls, 87 feet high Christmas tree and a nightly light and sound show, it is Boston’s winter wonderland for every shopaholic.
For those who prefer more high-end stores, Newbury Street is where you can find most designer brands.
To get to admire the world-renowned Saks Fifth Avenue, make your way to The Prudential Center. Offering more than 75 shops under one roof, this shopping centre has connections to some of the city’s major hotels, restaurants and places of interest.
After a day of shopping, there is nothing as satisfying as a relaxing drink, so we enjoyed some cocktails at BOND, the stylish bar at The Langham hotel. The highlight of our night was undoubtedly the Nutcracker performed by The Boston Ballet – the most Christmassy and enticing shows I have ever seen.
The contrast between the busy, cosmopolitan Boston and the serenity of Maine, is significant. The state, which was our next stop, is located only two hours away but has a completely different vibe.
On the way there, we stopped at what could easily be described as a gem on the road.