The Boston Public Library (BPL) in Copley Square first opened its doors to the public on Sunday, February 3, 1895, and tomorrow marks the 125th anniversary of this iconic building’s opening. While this wasn’t the first home of the library, it is the only home anyone alive today would know.
The BPL is the 3rd largest public library in the United States behind only the U.S. Library of Congress and the New York City Public Library. However, it’s not the amazing amount of research nor its prized collections or priceless artwork that make this such a beloved institution.
The BPL anchors the west side of Copley Square in the heart of Boston’s Back Bay neighborhood. It is where many important cultural and sporting events take place; such as the finish line of the Boston Marathon.
Since 1897, every April (on Patriot’s Day) tens of thousands of runners cross in front of the Boston Library and every parade of note either lines up alongside or pass by these buildings.
The original building (a.k.a. The McKim building) and its gorgeous courtyard that was inspired by Rome’s Palazzo della Cancelleria are sanctuaries I go to often and places I show anyone who visits Boston. Bates Hall (shown below) on the second floor of the McKim Building features 50-foot-high barrel vault ceiling and is a must-see for any architecture enthusiasts. Travel + Leisure agrees with me too – check out their 2016 article about the BPL here.
Next time you’re in the Back Bay, take a few minutes to pay the BPL a visit and appreciate this cultural gem.
Earlier this week my friend Cyrus Dahmubed posted this gorgeous photo of the sun setting behind the Hancock Tower in the Back Bay (for all you wise asses, I know it’s now called 200 Clarendon but it will always be the Hancock to me).
Here is a throwback to the spring of 2002 when Sergio and I lived in Back Bay and our neighbor was raising “show bunnies”; you read that correctly by the way.
We figured this would be our only chance to be photographed with so many bunnies so we took the opportunity and made the most of it.
Established in 1837 The Boston Public Garden is a beautiful park in the center of town. I thought I’d share this gorgeous photo taken by Bret Clancy who has many photos of Boston on his IG account and available for sale on Etsy here. Much thanks to Arts Boston Instagram for posting this picturesque photo of kids playing hockey last month.
Quite possibly my favorite bookstore (certainly my favorite bookstore in Boston), Trident Booksellers and Cafe, was forced to close temporarily after a fire broke out in late February, but last week the bookstore reopened after undergoing extensive renovations.
The Trident’s cafe / restaurant was a favorite location of mine when I lived in the Back Bay so even if you’re not much of a reader you can go enjoy some food then check out their monster magazine rack or purchase a few funny cards. Keep in mind, the Trident now has daily entertainment / programming every evening so there really is never a bad time to stop by and see the newly renovated space.
While I’ve yet to have a chance to visit the bookstore I wanted to help get word out and encourage everyone to visit the Trident on Newbury Street between Hereford Street and Massachusetts Avenue.
Show this local business some love.
Trident Booksellers and Cafe
338 Newbury Street – Back Bay
Store Hours: 8AM to Midnight daily
Click on image to enlarge || Source: bldup.com
ICYMI, another HUGE project was approved by the city of Boston last week. Boston Properties received unanimous approval from the Boston Planning and Development Agency board last Thursday for their air-rights project above the MBTA’s Back Bay Station.
The project will add 1.3+ million-square-feet of mixed-use development, including a new 34-story building,office building with ground floor retail, two new residential buildings, a one- to two-story vertical retail expansion of the existing Back Bay Station building, and the partial redevelopment of the existing 165 Dartmouth Street Garage. For more information visit bldup.com.