Pomodoro's flavorful, creative offerings reconcile the old Italian with the new. The food retains a simple, traditional character—which should not read as dull or unimaginative, whatever you may have come to expect after numerous "red sauce" menu encounters so often in the North End. But when the menu branches out, it doesn't wander so far that it becomes vaguely "Mediterranean." The servings are generous but have other salient features. The dishes aren't excessively decorative and sprouty, and the atmosphere is casual and friendly. Note of caution: Hour-long waits are not unusual. 319 Hanover St., Boston, MA .
Considering the onslaught of just-opened and recently renovated hotels, it's a good time to be a guest in Boston (if a somewhat less good time to be a hotelier). How to stand out among the expected 300-thread-count sheets, Frette robes, designer bath products, and 24-hour room service? The glossy waterfront InterContinental outshines the competition (literally—its wavelike structure is swathed in reflective glass) with all of the above, plus a spa, a gym, three novelty restaurants, and one of the biggest ballrooms in town. The quick, courteous employees are a business traveler's dream; the mini esplanade along nearby Fort Point Channel, a stroller's delight. 510 Atlantic Ave., Boston, MA intercontinentalboston.com.
If you need to get something somewhere in this perpetually gridlocked city quickly, you have two options: hire City Express, or . . . okay, you've got only one option. Rain, wind, traffic jams, and subway breakdowns fail to thwart this company's army of messengers, who quietly, safely, and responsibly complete rush deliveries, often along custom routes established for regular customers. Full disclosure: We use City Express. Fuller disclosure: We use City Express because they're the most reliable and efficient service out there. And—novelty of novelties—they staff the phones 24 hours a day to fine-tune delivery schedules. 201 South St., Boston, MA cityexp.com/.
We could spend hours extolling the glories of Duffy's handiwork. He has, after all, single-handedly spiffed up some of the city's most stylish residences and commercial spaces—Manny Ramirez's pad and the Charlesmark Hotel among them. But while Duffy's signature soft contemporary vision may be breathtaking—and it is breathtaking—in the end, it's how he works with people that counts. Client after client remarks about his flexibility, his positive attitude, punctuality, respect for budgets, and diligence in meeting demands. In short, he actually listens and, thus, ultimately proves that his ear is every bit as good as his eye. 516 East Second St., South Boston, MA duffydesigngroup.com/.
No matter if you’re hosting a Zoom meeting or clicking over to a virtual lunchtime yoga session, you won’t want to hide Outdoor Voices’ (pictured) bold, eye-catching leggings and ultra-soft sweats. The company’s sustainably sourced activewear, after all, was designed for “doing things,” whether those things are running for miles or running your business (and your life) from your kitchen counter. 31 Northern Ave., Boston, MA 02210, outdoorvoices.com.
Hey, you—in the cargo pants and Chucks. Casualwear is fine for casual moments, but your big client meeting, your anniversary dinner, and for-the-love-of-Christ your best friend's wedding call for something far spiffier. At Louis Boston (go on, it's not as scary as it looks), made-to-measure and ready-to-wear suits from Brioni, Kiton, and Dries Van Noten make dressing up a cinch. Even easier-going ensembles by such names as Neil Barrett and Annapuna put postcollege khakis to shame. 60 Northern Ave., Boston, MA 2110, louisboston.com.
When the week has left you flagging, buck up your spirits and your body with a total rejuvenation—roots to toes—at Giuliano, where they're at your service seven days a week. Robert Nazzaro does great color, the waxing and manicure services are first-rate, and a massage and reflexology treatment with Karen will get you back in shape to soldier into Monday. Soon to come: expanded facilities with a hydrotherapy tub. 338 Newbury Street, Boston, MA .
If she's good enough for the James Beard Foundation, she's good enough for us. Some people complain about the through-the-roof prices—they're just whiners. Not only is the food inspired, fresh, and beautifully presented, your waiter is also professional and friendly (without crouching by your table to become your new best friend). Ritalo, 1 Bennett St., Cambridge, MA .
Nothing disappoints like a colorist who listens to your needs, then executes an entirely different shade. Swear off such nasty surprises by enlisting Ronit Enos to help your hair. Her expert team does an exhaustive preprocess consultation with every client before creating intricate highlights and lustrous glazes. The only surprise here is a pleasant one: how natural your hair looks afterward. 124 Washington St., Norwell, MA maximesalon.com/.
You can't really improve the crummy lottery odds by changing your ticket source—the Lottery Commission takes care to spread the winners around town—but if your misery loves company, you should take your transaction to this high-volume newsstand. It sells more total lottery ticket,—winners and losers—than any other outlet. West Medford, MA
McWhirk and partner Antoniou work out of A&M Motors, 47 Webster Ave., Somerville. A&M won't do body work, and 90 percent of their effort is put into foreign cars, but they're reliable and will work on American models if asked (reasonable, too; sixteen dollars an hour for labor). "We do repairs, and we stand behind them," McWhirk says. "We're pretty open. We figure out what has to be fixed, what should be done first. I treat each job like my own car." A & M Motos, 47 Webster Ave., Somerville, MA .
In a town where moving is a way of life (and everyone moves at precisely the same moment), finding a mover to do the job quickly and affordably can be a challenge. When we needed to move on a Sunday and at the last minute, though, the friendly people at Nick's said it wouldn't be a problem. And it wasn't. The courteous, energetic moving team got the job done quickly, safely, and efficiently, with no complaints about fourth-floor walkups. What's more, this moving service is comparatively inexpensive, with hourly rates of $115 for a three-man team or $90 for a two-man team—all of which makes the yearly relocating habit in this town affordable vice. 495 Columbia St., Somerville, MA bostonmamovers.net/.
Vacationers can play it two ways as they settle into this welcoming, wood-filled space for a midday meal: fuel up for an afternoon of high-impact romping in the sand, or just plain fill up for several hours of indolence under the sun. For the former, there's leaner fare such as grilled chicken on Portuguese muffins and a salad with gorgonzola, walnut, and sun-dried cranberries. For the latter, choose from plus-size portions of clam chowder, crab cakes, fish and chips, and other Cape Cod classics—and enjoy the wistful glances from those sticking to moderation (poor things). 23 West Road, Orleans, MA 2653, beaconroom.com.
Not quite ready to rock a smock at your favorite salon just yet? You don’t have to thanks to Grettacole, whose root touchup kits quickly became a quarantine sensation. Here, Natalie Salerno, a senior stylist at the salon, demonstrates how to pull off a successful DIY dye job at home. 1. Remove the touchup color and professional application brush from the kit. Be sure to put on the included disposable gloves before getting started—you’re not dying your hands, after all. 2. Always begin at your center part and follow the hairline, slowly moving from ear to ear as you apply the dye in small, quarter-inch sections. 3. Once the dye is applied, wait the full processing time—35 minutes—to ensure the color develops properly (unless you want orange hair!). Then shampoo twice: The first wash is to remove the color and prevent it from irritating your scalp or making your roots oily. The second is to eliminate any residue so you don’t stain pillowcases and towels. 10 Huntington Ave., Boston, MA 02116, grettastyle.com.
What becomes immediately clear upon entering the small shop are the hours needed to fully appreciate it. Cases chock-full of vintage jewelry line the perimeter of the room and reach almost to the ceiling. And there's even more than meets the eye; ask to see cuff links, for example, and numerous trays appear from the bottoms of cases that weren't initially visible. Ask to see more (if you dare) and bags and bags, filled to the brim, materialize. It's as if all of Beacon Hill's grand dames came here to empty their jewelry boxes. 73 Charles St., Boston, MA 02114, boston-vintagejewelry.com.