Cambridge, Massachusetts

Photo: Freepoint Hotel

You started with a classic Manhattan. The house version is made with Old Overholt Rye, Cocchi Torino Vermouth, and Jerry Thomas Bitters. It, along with a blazing fire pit, started to warm you up on this gray, chilly day. Now you’re perusing the rest of the Manhattan Menu and trying to decide if you should stick with rye or switch to bourbon or Scotch. The Clint Eastwood—containing bourbon, Cinzano Vermouth, and orange bitters—sounds interesting. So does the Bobby Burns, which switches the latter’s bourbon for Scotch and the orange bitters for Bénédictine, a French herbal liqueur.

This is probably the first time you’ve ever sipped cocktails outside in Boston in January. Technically, you’re in Cambridge. After ringing in the new year with Copley Square’s light show, fireworks over Boston Harbor, and good friends who you rarely get to see, you decided to stick around for a few extra days. Cambridge, known for its historic sites and prestigious universities, has become a buzzy neighborhood. Restaurants, bars, and hotels finally caught up with the tech startups. So you headed across the Charles River to see the change for yourself.

Freepoint Hotel is one of the new kids on the block. The brick building used to be a Best Western. It’s now a modern and stylish boutique hotel. Cozy sitting nooks, exposed pipes, green plants, and lots of art fill the lobby. It overlooks the glass Secret Garden. The all-season, urban oasis is where you brought your cocktail from Freepoint Kitchen & Cocktails. Chef Matthew Gaudet, a 2013 Food & Wine Best New Chef, mixes locally sourced ingredients with global flavors at the restaurant. His warm, whipped-herbed ricotta and Irish whiskey-cured salmon are both delicious. There’s a lobby pantry, with 24-hour snacks, and a Starbucks, for your caffeine fix, on site, too.

Photo: Freepoint Hotel

The rest of the hotel is just as chill as the lobby. Each room has a black-and-white color scheme. There’s a king-size bed, a corner sofa, and bedside USB chargers in your deluxe king. The bathroom has two rainfall showers, Beekman 1802 soap, and Living Proof hair products. There’s also superfast WiFi, of course.

What else do you need in a hip hotel? A dog-friendly policy? Your four-legged friend receives treats upon arrival and bowls in your room. Danehy Dog Park, a fenced-in area, and Fresh Pond Reservation, with its 2.5-mile loop, are right down the street. Local transportation? Their free local shuttle will bring you anywhere within a two-mile radius. The Alewife Station, which serves the Red Line on the T, is just a short walk away, too. More tech? The hotel even has its own podcast channel on RadioPublic, a free, Boston-based listening app. Freepoint seems to have thought of everything. Now all you need to do is pick a cocktail.

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