Zack Lo: Why I Love Wakefield

Photo by Scott M. Lacey

As part of our annual cover story Best Places to Live 2012, we invited prominent Boston residents to tell us what they love about their ‘hood. Here, shoe designer Zack Lo’s, whose edgy heels have been featured in Glamour, Elle, and other fashion publications, shares the reasons why he loves Wakefield.

You won’t find big chain stores and restaurants on Wakefield’s Main Street. Instead, the town center is rife with cozy cafés and independent eateries, from the upscale Artichokes to Ristorante Molise, with its excellent pasta puttanesca, to My Brother’s Place, which has the best margherita pizza. The ice cream parlor Cravings is right out of a 1950s movie, and serves up some addictive seasonal flavors (like the “Love Potion,” bittersweet chocolate ice cream with truffles and raspberry swirl, for Valentine’s Day). The hardware store is still family-owned, and the Farmland grocery feels like an indoor farmers’ market. I love to see so many thriving small businesses, and I’ve even struck up a great friendship with Seth Balabanian at Town Cobbler. I pop in all the time to say hello and to discuss the shoe industry and our families. I adore Wakefield Common, with its tall New England steeples and turn-of-the-century façades. It opens onto Lake Quannapowitt, known for its parks, trails, and festivals. The chimes at St. Joseph Church — a block from my house — sound off like Big Ben every hour, reminding me of the years I spent living in London. Oh, and parking in town is a breeze.

This post originally appeared in “Best Places to Live 2012” Check out the story to find out how much your house is worth and see our top Boston real estate picks.