No, it's not flashy. And yes, the lines are reminiscent of a bygone era. But don't confuse traditional with passé. Thos. Moser's handmade black cherry furniture, with its customized accents and craftsmanship, never looks dated. Plus, all the store's wares (dining tables, armoires, sleigh beds) come with lifetime guarantees—something any home has room for. 19 Arlington St., Boston, MA 2116, thomasmoser.com.
Sure, we’d all love to have the Hope Diamond in our jewelry box, but it’s those pieces we wear every day that become part of who we are — and nobody understands that better than M. Flynn founders and sisters Moria and Megan Flynn. Their impeccable taste, refined over more than a decade in business, is what keeps their loyal fan base coming back for bold, statement earrings, colorful bracelets, and everything in between. 40 Waltham St, Boston, MA 02118, mflynnjewelry.com.
Mauro Henrique made his name on This Old House; now he makes sure homes across the area are camera-ready through his Somerville-based business, Mauro’s Painting. With a focus on restoration and a background in carpentry, he’s a dream combination of handyman and artisan, with a calm demeanor and attention to detail to match. Also, unlike many painters, Henrique doesn’t use subcontractors, which means you’ll get consistent quality in every space he and his team transform. maurospainting.com.
We’ve all experienced it: the unmistakable squeak from inside a wall, those dreaded droppings on the kitchen counter, or — worse — a face-to-face encounter with an eight-legged or winged intruder. When bats, rats, spiders, termites, or other pests worm their way into your humble abode, call this fearless team pronto. Not only will they safely trap and remove the uninvited guests, they’ll also repair minor damage, decontaminate the site, and seal up potential reentry points to ensure your home remains trespasser-free. ultrasafepest.com.
Chakras out of whack? Crick in your back? Can’t seem to focus? Laura Corrigan is on the case. Offering appointments on Mondays at Ardan Medspa + Salon in Wellesley and the rest of the week from her home office in Newton, the well-trained healer is adept in a range of wellness modalities, including acupuncture, traditional Chinese medicine, reiki, and energy work. Whatever cocktail of services she cooks up, you’ll leave feeling relaxed, refreshed — and wondering why you didn’t start seeing her sooner. laurelwellness.com.
Back Bay residents have long entrusted the Rivas family with their most precious items of clothing — and with decades of experience under their collective belts hemming, mending, and stitching, it’s no wonder. Bonus: The second-floor atelier is open five days a week from Tuesday to Saturday, which means you can pop in for a quick lunch-hour button repair or come by for a longer weekend wedding-dress fitting — or have them come to you for an in-home appointment. 324B Newbury St., Boston, MA 02115, newburytailors.com.
Break free from your pizza rut with help from this teensy Cuban jewel in Waltham, which combines the warm service of an old-world café with decidedly modern touches—namely, an efficient takeout oper- ation offering dishes that pack a flavorful punch: husky Cubanos, savory empanadas (hot or frozen for later), and plantain chips with an herbaceous cilantro sauce that tastes like summer in a thimble. Beer and wine are available to take home, too, so you can wash it all down with a crisp bottle of Muscat. 240 Moody St., Waltham, MA 02453, gustazo-cubancafe.com/waltham.
Like the city’s options for Sichuan fare, this repeat winner just keeps getting better—and bigger. Last winter, the Chinatown original spawned a sibling kitchen in Central Square that instantly warmed the Scoville-loving hearts (and mouths) of Cantabrigians with its palate-igniting cauldron of “Scalding Fish Fillet” and thin-skinned dumplings drenched in beguiling hot sauce. (The puckery, vinegary stuff—like pork with pickled cabbage soup—is tempting, too.) Here’s hoping the fire continues to spread. 58 Beach St. , Boston, MA 5spiceshouse.com .
This Back Bay videographer understands that there are certain moments you’ll want to relive over and over. Thanks to nearly three decades of documenting couples’ special days, S.H. Videography knows exactly what to linger on: the sweet first look; the vows that made the whole crowd cry; the heartfelt, two-Jamesons-deep toast from Uncle Don; the ring bearer breaking it down on the dance floor. As S.H. puts it, “A photo captures a moment in time, but a video captures time in motion.” 162 Newbury St., Boston, Massachusetts 02116, shvideography.com.
Based solely on the coolness of its bayside pool, Wequassett would swim away with this prize. But it also excels in every other way: The cozy cottage accommodations feel like the Cape of yore (albeit with Molton Brown toiletries and nightly turndown service); prime Signature rooms have fireplaces and unmatched water views. And then there's the exquisite golf course. The outdoor bar. The laid-back yet attentive staff. Need we go on? 2171 Head of the Bay Rd., Harwich, MA 2645, wequassett.com.
You might say Hudson has New England roots and California tips. That's the product of the decor vision of owner-designer Jill Goldberg, whose store is an ecumenical palette of vintage, modern, romantic, and tribal. There are soft, sweet sofas by Shabby Chic; stately Oly chairs and ottomans; and art deco-accented lamps from Worlds Away. It's an aesthetic that can make any Boston home kinder, gentler, and full-on cozier. 312 Shawmut Ave., Boston, MA hudsonboston.com.
Perhaps the reason Mistral's service is so superior is because the majority of the staff have been on board since the place opened 10 years ago. Or maybe it's that the menu hasn't changed all that much, which means servers not only know every ingredient in the wild mushroom risotto by heart, but can hold forth on its individual virtues as well. Whatever it is, the service is reliably attentive yet subtle, ensuring that a night out here always goes smoothly. 223 Columbus Ave., Boston, MA mistralbistro.com.
Chloé dresses and Balenciaga bags are just two style-savvy suburbanite mainstays found on the racks at Gretta Luxe. Owner Gretchen Monahan travels to New York, Paris, and Milan to bring home exclusive high-fashion apparel and recently debuted a line of knit separates; manager Katie Faessler plays resident style coach, recommending the right Zac Posen top to wear with your new Matthew Williamson embroidered skirt. 94 Central St., Wellesley, MA 2482, grettaluxe.com.
While other retailers stay home and (literally) phone in their orders, LuxCouture owner Sari Brown hits the European circuit to source the next obsessed-over bag. She built a business on being first, introducing customers to new shoulder bags, clutches, and totes from VBH, Adriana Castro, and Elena Ghisellini. The store's increasingly impressive supply of casual clothing helps dress the woman who accessorizes, but in Brown's eyes, the bags will always have it. 21 Lincoln St., Newton Highlands, MA 2461, .
In the year since the high-end New York chain opened a location in the Back Bay, Bostonians have been flocking to this ideal spa-gym hybrid. The sleek, inviting space holds not only the latest fitness equipment, but also studios for Pilates, cycling, and myriad yoga classes (pranavayu, vinyasa flow, anusara, and power). Inclined toward pampering? Avail yourself of the full range of massages, wraps, and facials. Afterward, the juice bar and free WiFi in the lounge help recharge body and mind. 131 Dartmouth St., Boston, MA 2116, .