The Liberty Hotel (Boston) in March 2017

The Liberty Hotel in Boston was an old Jailhouse converted to hotel.

After our most recent vacation to Boston, we made a second trip out to Boston for a wedding. The wedding ceremony and reception both took place at the Liberty Hotel, so due to the anticipated cold weather, we decided to book at the venue. I’ll cover the highlights my stay at the Liberty Hotel, and then follow up the list with a more in-depth detail report:

  • Breathtaking Lobby First Impression
  • Unbelievable Building with History
  • Unmet Basic Hotel Services (no warm/hot water in the shower, and unmade rooms)
  • Well Organized Wedding Ceremony and Reception
  • Overall, I would rate this hotel a 3 stars out of 5

Upon arrival, the interior views as you enter the main lobby are absolutely amazing. There isn't much when it comes to exterior windows. The lobby is over four stories tall, and a modern and accessible catwalk surrounds the edge of the spacious lobby, similar to a prison. On the view along, I was excited about the stay. It wasn’t until we checked in that the front desk reminded us of the history behind the Liberty Hotel. It was originally a jail house converted to a hotel. And the architects kept the essence of the prison in the lobby by keeping, but cleaning up, the original brick and iron working! At this point, I was looking forward to checking out the room and was fairly pleased with the service.

The room itself was large, clean, and updated. Nothing about the room seemed worn down. The bathroom was spacious with a shower and a separate bathtub. We were on the second floor (same floor as the lobby), so we never needed to take the elevator. But accessing floors on the elevator requires your room key, so the building is safe. All in all, the good experiences continued, but that’s where problems started propping up.

The first day, we went out to eat dinner at No. 9 Park. It was a brief walk, about 10-15 minutes. That would have been fine, but that weekend in Boston was especially cold, with the temperatures in the teens throughout the whole day. Coming from San Francisco, despite being equipped with fairly warm clothing (scarf, heavy jacket, and gloves), we were still cold. Therefore, our first thought upon getting back to the hotel room was to take a bath. Unfortunately, the water from the bathtub was not even considered lukewarm. I tried to enjoy it, but decided to switch to shower only after 4-5 minutes. Unfortunately, the shower water was likely worse. After hanging around for additional 4-5 minutes in the shower, it wasn’t getting any better. So I settled with a quick rinse off and called it a night.

The following morning, I wanted to let the hotel know that the room water wasn’t warm/hot. Their response was that they were having problems with the water boiler and that it more commonly affects the lower level rooms. They said it would be fixed in 1-2 hours, but that was useless as we were leaving for the day. the Liberty Hotel offered nothing more for our troubles (something that's acceptable at a regular hotel, but not one that claims to be a luxury hotel). As it turns out, it turns out most of the guests at the wedding also with the Liberty Hotel experienced hot water problems despite being on higher floors. One of our relatives told us that the solution they got from the Liberty Hotel front desk was to run the hot was for 20 minutes before taking a shower!

The upside is everything related to the wedding was spectacular. The services at the wedding was very good. The hors d'oeuvre were very tasty. The dinner entrée (salmon and filet mignon) were both cooked to perfection. And the party afterwards were well controlled.

After the wedding festivities, we were surprised to return to an unmade room. Everything was exactly as we left it. To our amazement, we found out room for the bride and groom was also unmade. At this point, I’ve given up on any hope that the Liberty Hotel could effectively run a hotel, with the basic amenities of the hotel unmet that even motels can even get right. One may argue that I got unlucky, but the fact my experience wasn’t unique during our stay makes me think otherwise.

Overall, the Liberty Hotel is an amazing hotel, but not quite up to par. I don’t know how long they’ve been associated with SPG Group (we’re big fans of Le Méridien Hotels). That being said, the Liberty Hotel has lots of potential to being a truly luxury hotel, but it’s not quite up to par. Hopefully SPG can correct this issue in the future.

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