Compare and Contrast: Boston’s Two Four Seasons Hotel Locations

How many luxury hotels does one city need? Apparently, a lot. We compare the soaring new Four Seasons at One Dalton with its sister location on the Common to see which one really offers the suite life.

Illustration by Jon Reinfurt

One Dalton

Best Hotel Room in the House: It’s the oldest rule in real estate: The higher the floor, the better the view, the more you pay. If staying in the 1,627-square-foot Presidential Suite on the 21st floor doesn’t give you a nosebleed, the price per night just might. But who knows? You won’t find the cost on the website—it’s only “available upon request.”

Lobby Luxuries: What this lobby lacks in size and splendor it makes up for in artwork. Curator to the stars Kate Chertavian has made it a veritable gallery of pieces by acclaimed artists.

The Residences: Please stop bragging about your condo at Millennium Tower—One Dalton is the hot new address in town. The only downside to the $65,000-a-month rental penthouse is that it can be tricky to hang your art collection when most of the walls are windows. Notable residents: Dell CEO Michael Dell, developer Richard Friedman, and Herb Chambers.

Bar scene: The in-house izakaya, Zuma, has become the new home for Boston’s most social lads and ladies, who post up for rosé-fueled lunches, pre-gala drinks, post-gala nightcaps, and just about any other excuse they can come up with.

Spa Scene: Easily the nicest of the two relaxation havens, it still has that new-spa smell. With 10 rejuvenating facial treatments on offer—including one that incorporates black diamonds—you can practically get a facelift here.

200-220 Boylston

Best Hotel Room in the House: The 2,590-square-foot Royal Suite features reclaimed-hardwood floors, a separate kitchen, a formal dining room, a private balcony, and a baby grand piano. It’ll set you back a cool $13,000 a night, but who wouldn’t pay that much to sleep with the piano Sir Elton John and Billy Joel are rumored to have played?

Lobby Luxuries: Traditionally uniformed bellhops, shiny stone floors, an opulent wooden reception desk, and a grandiose staircase translate to Old Boston at its best.

The Residences: The 86 condos range in size from one to four bedrooms and start at around $1 million. Penthouses go for about $10 million, or rent for $45,000 a month. Notable residents: Peter Lunder, heir to the Dexter shoe company, General Catalyst’s Joel Cutler and, once again, Herb Chambers, who apparently is a man for eight seasons.

Bar scene: If you’ve lost a successful middle-aged business exec somewhere in the city, chances are you can find him or her wheeling and dealing in a corner booth at the Bristol.

Spa Scene: This spa actually needs a facelift. Thankfully, it’s closing in January for renovations. (Not surprising, considering the shiny young competition that just moved to town.)