Nine Zero Hotel

90 Tremont St, Boston, MA 02108
Phone:(617) 772-5800

We love "boutique" Hotels. 

The minute you arrive at Nine Zero Hotel in Boston, it feels as if you're coming to your own private fully stocked pied-à-terre.


The Nine Zero hotel really does deliver "chic" in the heart of Boston. "Relax" is the mandate of this hotel and from the moment you arrive it's ingrained in the sidewalk outside the front door of the hotel; it's on the hotel menu and in-room iPad.

When the doors from the street open, there is a dog bowl and treats for your pet, signaling from that very moment that this is the kind of place that values its furry friends; and if an organization values its pets, it values its customers.  When we checked in at the front desk, we were immediately handed a glass a wine and welcomed like a true guest.

There are selection of fabulous suites, so it was difficult for us to chose one to try. After a lot of discussion and perusal of the hotel's website, we settled on the "501" suite, and we are certainly happy we did. Approximately 750 square feet, it's really everything you need for the perfect stay in Boston. Walking across a tailored lobby of marble floors, eclectic furniture and cutting edge art, an elevator ride later we are entering our suite at the very end of the hall. There is something special about walking to the end of a hall in a hotel because instinctively you know it's going to be better than everything  else in-between.

With the door flung open, the tailored suite shown all black and white with lavender furniture, oversize lamps, felt chairs and coffered ceilings lined in silver papers. There's a dining table for four, a bar area, writing desk, living room with mini bar and flat screen, and lots and lots of nick-knacks that are not glued or nailed down, letting you know that you are welcome in "your" home. There is even a yoga mat in every room in case you want to de-stress from the travel experience, or just stay "om" (like Scott's mantra when he meditates).

Michael and I perused the myriad art books strewn throughout the living area as we felt the vibrancy of the black and white wall paper behind us. Sitting on the bar was a welcome bottle of champagne, as well as a picture of Triple dog (a Nine Zero staff member had written to us prior to our departure from L.A. asking if they could have a picture of something or someone we had to leave behind, 

and voila, it was framed in the suite for our pleasure; nice touch).  Each suite comes equipped with an iPad with shopping selections, five major newspapers and internet.

The bathroom was smallish but equipped with everything you would want or need, surrounded by Carrara marble floors and a gorgeous tan marble sink. Small interesting crystal perfume bottles appoint the shelves, along with the most fab Etro products whose colors excite the eye and compliment the artistic decor of the suite. 

Big fluffy Frette robes with faux zebra fur collars set them apart from all the other robes that hotels supply and they were so fluffy we could hardly fit them in our suitcases (just kidding, but you can purchase them). There's also a night light in the bathroom which is very thoughtful so that you don't trip on the way to use the toilet at night (or have to turn on a light to wake you up).  This is a small feature, but so appreciated and oft times overlooked by the "big" hotels.

There are two closets, one in the living room and one near the bedroom, which is ample room to store and hang our belongings for a week. The bedroom is delightfully separate and without windows, which means it's off the city streets, nice and dark and very, very quiet.  To be in the heart of a major city and not hear any street noise is worth every penny. Sliding black doors reveals the chicly tailored bedroom, complete with king bed, beautiful cotton sheets 

and mounds of pillows (they have a pillow menu from which one can choose just the kind of pillow that will make you happy) and they scream, "come lay on me." The black and white decor is not dark, it's just smart. A large flat screen on the wall is the perfect way to unwind after the long flight, and soon we are asleep and wondering why we didn't book an entire week at this hidden gem of a hotel.

Unfortunately the fine dining restaurant was in the process of being remodeled, so we didn't get to experience it (next time), but in-room dining is available all the time, night and day, from a sumptuous meal to light snacks and desserts.  They also make bar packages and hors d'oeurves available in the hospitality room on the second floor, (but who could be bothered getting out of our fab Frette robes to go public?).

In the morning, the realization that we were in the oldest part of our country set in when we pulled back the drapes to find that right outside our window was a beautiful ancient cemetery and the tall steeple from an old church.

After a truly restorative and uninterrupted sleep in our comfy cocoon of a bedroom, we opted for breakfast room service, which was delivered at the exact time it was ordered (in our case, bright and early at 10:30 am).  The lovely Brazilian server's smile detracted from the pouring rain outside our window.

We ordered a ridiculous feast for two people and excused our gluttony on
the fact that we wanted to try a wide selection of items on our only day at Nine Zero to do so.

The French toast consisted of six slices of thick brioche bread, covered in pecans and real maple syrup (they take offense to Mrs. Buttersworth in this part of the world), accompanied by crispy bacon and sausage.

It was a indulgent way to start the day, and so wonderful.  The cafe latte that accompanied it was piping hot and smooth as silk.  We decided to be healthy by washing it down with fresh oj and a glass of coconut water.  The American Breakfast was a terrific combination of eggs over easy that looked bright yellow and farm fresh, as we're sure they were.  If you're after a light start, the granola and yogurt was covered with so many fresh berries that you couldn't even see the yogurt underneath.  It was also big enough to share.

We wanted to see if the east coast could compete with California's fresh fruit and we were very pleased to discover that their fruit selection was as fresh as the stuff we get at home.  The large plate was covered with fresh pineapple, blackberries, strawberries, cantaloupe and honeydew, and it was a terrific way to rationalize that we just ate French toast, bacon and sausages covered in maple syrup!  This would have been a perfect time to go to their gym on the third floor

which was compact but perfect for travel needs; or use the yoga mat; but we decided on a walk around Boston Central instead.

Located in the Ladder District, Nine Zero is a five minute walk to the financial district, the theater and nightclub district and ten minutes from the city's best shopping and tourist destinations such as Faneuil Hall, the historic waterfront, back bay and Beacon Hill.  It also is on the famed Freedom Trail and is just a block away from the green oasis of historic Boston Common.

There is no question that we will revisit Nine Zero the next time we come into town, and we will make sure to spend more time in the room and the new special eatery they are creating, soon to open.  So stay tuned.


Eating our way through New England

Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Maine

There are so many wonderful choices in this part of the world, it was difficult for us to select where we wanted to dine.  Here are just 3.5 of our Dining Duo picks:

No. 9 Park
9 Park Street
Boston, MA
(617) 742-9991

Our eating orgy began at No. 9 Park and what a beginning it was. The restaurant is
now celebrating their fifteenth anniversary and No. 9 is still as good
(if not better) than the first time we were there about fourteen years
ago. Barbara Lynch's superb style shines through each and every dish.  As
Californians, what a treat it is to go back to one of our perennial
favorite taste treats, foie gras, which is now ridiculously unavailable in our home
state. We were lucky enough to savor it two different ways. Our
favorite--a real "Sophie's Choice"--was the seared Hudson Valley with
black pepper.

Scott can't stop talking about the prune stuffed Gnocchi with yes, more
foie gras and almonds which was a true taste delight and almost an
overload to our senses (but not quite).


10 Commercial Alley
Portsmouth, NH
(603) 319-1575

Who knew that one of our best meals in New England would be in
Portsmouth, New Hampshire, which is a town that matches charm with
collegiate. The quaint and compact Cava is off an alley way that is filled with small shops and restaurants.  Their $32 tasting menu has to be one of the best pay-offs and values we've experienced in ages. We were very warmly welcomed by owner John Akar, who checked on us throughout the evening. 

Our server Danny was handsome (which always adds to the dining experience) and extremely attentive, explaining each of our five courses to us in just enough detail to allow us to explore the indulgences further. We loved the Pork tenderloin with slab bacon and beluga lentils and if the fennel cider soup is any indication of how terrific their other soup offerings are, Cava is the place to warm during those tough Northeast winters. We can't wait to return here.


Five Fifty-Five
555 Congress Street
Portland, ME
(207) 761-0555

Don't skip Portland, Maine on your journey through New England.
Decades ago it was a rough port-town, but now it's a restaurant savvy
charmer. Brunch at Five Fifty-Five was a memorable experience. Their
"Traitor's Eggs", consisting of gently-poached eggs with fresh Maine
lobster, arugula and lemon-chive hollandaise was a true stand out. 

Take a look at the picture and you will see how loaded it was with lobster.
We also enjoyed the "Mother and Child reunion" which was brined chicken
and a coddled egg with hash.


 West Bridge
1 Kendall Square
Cambridge MA
(617) 945-0221

Circling back to Boston, we met our hip-foodie friends Charlotte and
Marc at West Bridge in Cambridge. The space was cool and we loved their
seafood potage with uni butter and cedar ($14).  Also shown is their signature egg in a cup, which is a must try.  We'll be back to further review this unusual offering.

Appetizingly Yours,

Michael and Scott
The Dining Duo

Posted by The Dining Duo | 10:17 AM | , , , , , , , , , , , , | 0 comments »

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