The latest from Lili about Boston Real Estate.

Newbury Street: A Walk Down Memory Lane

May 5, 2012 |

Newbury Street is known as Boston’s shopping mecca. Located in the Back Bay neighborhood, the street is lined with fashionable boutiques including Armani, Cartier, Valentino, and Chanel to name a few.  It is fascinating to see the transformation of Newbury Street through the years with old shops closing and new ones opening. 

[caption id="attachment_612" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Now and Then: The Boston Globe Slideshow"]Newbury Street Now and Then[/caption]

The best place to gauge the economic boom or financial downturn is Newbury Street – it reflects the pulse of the luxury real estate Boston marketplace. About 30 years ago, Newbury Street was full of specialty food shops, butchers, and convenient stores etc., but the Back Bay neighborhood began to transition.

When apartment houses were converted into condos Boston and reverted back to large single family homes, Newbury Street shops began catering to higher-end clientele who demanded luxury goods and services. Specialty shops were replaced, little by little, by fashionable boutiques, hair salons and spas.

The street is still under constant development, which reflects the strength of the luxury real estate Boston market. Construction on the first block of Newbury, across from the Taj Hotel, is underway to replace the garage with high-end retail. There will also be a commercial/residential component due to be completed in 2013. Several schools on Newbury Street were also replaced by shops and residential buildings. The Prince Building used to be the old Prince School, but now houses retail space and condos Boston above.

[caption id="attachment_611" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Converted Prince Building; source:"]Prince Building on Newbury St[/caption]

Not much of the old Newbury Street remains. Higher priced condos Boston attract higher priced retail and services to the neighborhood. Progress has been positive, but nostalgia hits as you walk down Newbury today and don’t see the family-owned shops and familiar faces.

Interested in luxury real estate Boston surrounding Newbury Street? Browse my Back Bay listings and contact me for more information.


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