Where to stay in Boston? Prison, of course! As recently at 1990, prison inmates roamed the catwalks of this historic building, formerly known as the Charles Street Jail. Prone to riots and subject to physical decay, it was officially condemned to close years before it finally shut its doors for good as a prison. Now, after a $150 million renovation, this Boston landmark is a luxury four-star property aptly named The Liberty Hotel. This impressive transition must leave previous inmates stunned and a bit jealous.
This massive structure features a 90-foot central rotunda and cupola (built in 1851), as well as a restaurant, bar, grand ballroom, meeting spaces, and 300 guestrooms. The original architecture has been preserved as much as possible with its new spaces echoing its traditional look with rich mahogany woods, exposed brick walls, and touches of stainless steel.
Sleek accommodations have floor-to-ceiling windows, some of which peer out through ornate ironwork. Clink, one of three drinking establishments within the complex, has cozy dining nooks in vestiges of original jail cells. During the Summer months, guests gather on the outdoor patio casually dubbed “The Yard” – a perfect place to enjoy an afternoon cocktail while relaxing on a plush sofa.
Other jail hotels exist throughout the world, minus the splendor of the Liberty Hotel, of course, including hotels in Mt. Gambier, Australia; Luzern, Switzerland; Liepaja, Latvia; and Oxford, England.
Hotel link: http://www.libertyhotel.com/