Five Hacks to the Longwood Medical Area

Whether you’re a patient or a visitor, navigating Boston’s labyrinthine hospital complex isn’t easy. We asked Longwood locals for the insider 411.


You need veggie meals.

The Lavine Family Dining Pavilion at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute has vegan and vegetarian options, usually with a gourmet bent. Think: winter squash and portobello pasta and eggplant parmigiana.


You’re waiting for someone. And waiting.

For entertainment and distraction, head to Dana-Farber on Mondays at 1 p.m., and on Thursdays and Fridays at 2, to hear piano players serenading guests in the lobby.


You’re exhausted.

Need a power nap? You’ll spot the occasional on-break staffer snoozing in the children’s library at Boston Children’s Hospital. Why not curl up yourself?


You’re craving off-campus eats.

Caffè Nero and Pret-a-Manger just opened in the Longwood Galleria, and while the line was down the block and around the corner on opening day, crowds have calmed down a bit. Restless at 2 a.m.? There’s a 24-hour Au Bon Pain at Children’s.


You just gave birth—and are ravenous.

If your baby’s at the Brigham, here’s a hint: Request the crushed ice, ginger ale, and cranberry juice cocktail—the next best thing to a martini. If you’re at Beth Israel, you’re in luck: The menu is extensive for new moms (and they have private rooms). “They do everything except breast-feed for you,” one mom says.

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Plus, more from our 2015 Top Docs package, including a database of the best doctors in Boston.