The MFA may be a world-class marvel, but not for a nightcap. At gallery/restaurant Liquid Art House, striking visuals—starting with an enormous, scorpionlike Murano chandelier—complement boundary-pushing cocktails at the circular marble bar in the center of the art-bedecked atrium. Drink one or two. Or three. Say, were those paintings always so blurry? 100 Arlington St., Boston, MA 02116, liquidarthouse.com.
Celebrate art in all of its forms—that’s the mission of this bash on the banks of the Charles, which brings musicians, poets, and even circus artists to 150,000 of the area’s culture vultures. No matter who takes the stage, though, the prime feature of this festival is its interactivity for the whole family: think art tables for the kids and the goofy and wonderful People’s Sculpture Racing invitational, where moving artworks compete based on aesthetics and speed. MA 02139, cambridgema.gov/arts/programs/riverfestival.
This small diner's sharp take on breakfast basics keeps the crowds coming: cod cakes topped with poached local farm eggs and hollandaise; fluffy "drunken sailor" pancakes with real rum raisins; and specials like crushed Frosted Flakes French toast. Night owls should watch for the Art Cliff's food truck, which serves nocturnal delights like hot dogs and whoopie pies, often until 2 a.m. 39 Beach Rd., Vineyard Haven, MA 02568, .
From gooey finger paint to the finest in oils, this is the place for artists of all sizes. The store offers multi-colored pleasures, like markers, crayons, and spray paint. The tools of the trade are all here, too, including paint brushes, drafting tables, and portfolios. There is also a wide selection of stationary and greeting cards. The three-story shop even carries Bob Ross brand art supplies and paint. You'll be making happy little trees in no time. 579 Masachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA .
A multi-year winner, and still the best place around for great handcrafted jewelry, hand-blown glass, terrific pottery, fabulous clocks, and other one-of-a kind items. Copley Place, Boston, MA .
Bins of brushes, passels of paints, plus everything from buttons and beads to hand-printed papers and zinc plates for etching fill the two floors of this huge art-supply supermarket. And all art books are at least 20 percent off. 579 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA .
Don't let the name put you off. The Brodney Gallery of Fine Arts has a whopping collection of estate, antique, and costume jewelry, in addition to the expected paintings and sculptures. Go in and browse—it's a feast. 811 Boylston St., Boston, MA .
Great gifts for the hard-to-buy-for in the artists' haven. Everything from bowls to birdhouses is nicely displayed. 175 Newbury Street, Boston, MA .
Old Yankee ladies don't die—they just go to work at the MFA gift shop. The annual sale is as close as you'll ever get to a WASP buying frenzy. 479 Huntington Ave., Boston, MA .
The ArtCliff is no theme diner. This place is the real thing: Cupcakes and pies sit temptingly under glass; 1940s ads for $1.25 boiled dinners and 15-cent chocolate pudding decorate the walls. Most authentic of all? The reasonably priced portions of comfort food, including smoky seafood chowder, grilled cheese, and basil, corn, and lobster frittatas. ;39 Beach Rd., Vineyard Haven, 508-693-1224. 39 Beach Road, Vineyard Haven, Martha's Vineyard, MA 2568, .
Master puppeteer Basil Twist's adaptation of Stravinsky's ballet about a tragic love triangle among a clown, a ballerina, and a Moor managed to convey humanity and grace in the movement of Japanese-style marionettes. One compact hour long, it begged for repeat viewings from both kids and adults. Unique productions like this during ArtsEmerson's inaugural season have proven that this organization should be central to Boston arts for years to come. 559 Washington St., Boston, MA 2139, artsemerson.org.
They're not afraid to expose any medium, from M.G.M. musicals to Christo's drapes. 955 Boylston St., Boston, MA .
New director David Ross turned it around. Boston, MA
The stylists at Interlocks don't just cut your hair. They teach you how to maintain the style, and which products to use to keep your tresses looking salon-perfect long after you've left the chair. And with an adjacent full spa, this is a one-stop shop for hair, nail, and body needs. 58 Merrimac St., Newburyport, MA interlockssalon.com.