Best of Boston Home 2009

The premier designers, contractors, shops, and more, in Boston and beyond.



A contemporary light-filled home by GF Rhode Construction overlooks the Westport River. (Photo by Kent Dayton)


The folks at GF Rhode have performed some fairly extreme home makeovers through the years, but their forte is doing everything—from the construction and detailing to customer service—absolutely spot-on. That’s probably why Rhode received a coveted innovation award from the National Association of Home Builders in 2005. Known for their whole-house renovations and very high-end custom work, they have forged strong relationships with the most demanding architects in the region. Knowing how fussy architects can be about their projects, that’s the clincher for us.

1666 Hyde Park Ave., Boston, 617-364-2700,

Cleaning Service

The Kingston branch of this Boston-based cleaning company loves dirty talk. It’s part of the curriculum at MaidPro University, where each prospective employee gets well versed in grime, grease, and how to handle each of the chores on the company’s 49-point checklist. Does your cleaning service (or spouse) tackle all 49? Here are a few standard tasks from MaidPro’s file: remove fingerprints on appliances, dust tops of picture frames, empty trash cans, and fluff pillows. We
didn’t think so.

65 Summer St., Kingston, 781-585-9100,


This family-owned company embodies those “small-town values” that politicians always talk about. Owner Scott Matthews believes in taking the time to educate customers about electrical issues and ways to make life a little “greener,” but he also believes that taking care of every client, one call at a time, will build his business. His charming, homespun website includes answers to 76 electrical FAQs. (Our personal favorite: “How do I change a light bulb?” His response is seven bullet points long.)

816 Webster St., Units 2–3, Marshfield, 781-293-3271,

Hardware Store

Curry Ace staffers are like kin to many South Shore dwellers, and not just because employees in this third-generation family-owned business refer to their customers as “neighbors.” Proffering everything from hinges and tools to Carhartt clothing and Anti Monkey Butt Powder, Curry has what you need, and you’ll get it with a wink and a smile. Be sure to ask about the stores’ extensive line of green products when you stop by. Oh, and the Curry family is also committed to the community: They founded the annual Quincy Medical Center Cancer Walk more than a decade ago.

370 Copeland St., Quincy, 617-472-8250; 190 Quincy Ave., Braintree, 781-843-1616;


Not just a landscaper, not just a florist (with delivery available), not just a nursery, not just a hardscaper, but a full-blown landscape architect, too? South Shore, you are so lucky. Owner Steven Tomasi, heir to the family business, runs this 50-person full-service company on several acres in Pembroke. Like his father, he’s built a successful business on the one-stop-shopping model. Only here can you order your flower arrangements, pick up your bulbs at the nursery, and then contract to get your lawn mowed once a week while working with the staff to design your back forty.

299 Oak St., Pembroke, 781-826-7200,

 Painter, Exterior

Starbucks, Verizon, Eastern Mountain Sports, TJ Maxx. If these companies trust their painting needs to Wood, you’ve got to figure you’re in pretty good hands. This Quincy-based outlet spends 90 percent of its time doing commercial jobs but strives to give large homes and estates the same level of professional quality. For more than 30 years, the family-owned company has been splashing color up and down the East Coast.

258 Willard St., Quincy, 617-773-3767,

Painter, Interior

If it seems odd to be calling upon a place called Hingham Doors & Drawers for painting help, rest assured: Owner Klaus Freyer is a carpenter by trade (specializing in crown moldings, renovations, and custom furniture) but happens to be a whiz with a brush. Providing service to Hingham and beyond, Freyer says he prides himself on putting together bold colors to make something unique for each customer. Meticulous preparation and double priming of all work promise a finish that’s painted to last.

Hull, 617-968-3290,


For most homeowners, setting aside a six-hour window for a plumber to come and diagnose a leak is hardly practical. Hubbard Plumbing understands that. The small company makes specific appointments and actually sticks to them, so you can get back to your routine. And if you need help on the fly, it provides last-minute emergency service as well. Stop into the shop, which doubles as a showroom, just to say hello. The staff will offer you a cup of joe and a smile.

1944 Ocean St., Marshfield, 781-837-6297

Small Repairs

Tim Heroux and his crew have earned the trust of 150 families around the South Shore—and they’re always eager to add a few more keys to their collective ring. Jobs range from roofing to wallpapering to windows to woodwork; basically, if you can think of it, they can do it. Just in case you do your best thinking at night, the company offers 24-hour service at no extra charge.

Braintree, 617-816-7200,

The Boston Home team has curated a list of the best home design and home remodeling professionals in Boston, including home builders and contractors, interior designers, home accent décor, and more. Get the help you need with FindIt/Boston's guide to home renovation pros.