Hotel Review: Royal Sonesta Boston in Cambridge, MA

With a high school senior, spring break has been all about college tours, and the Royal Sonesta Boston Hotel was a perfect home base to visit “America’s College Town.” Situated on the banks of the Charles River in Cambridge, made it easy to drive from the Royal Sonesta Boston to our daughter’s interview at Boston University, and, along the way, we drove right through MIT’s campus. In addition, the Royal Sonesta Boston Hotel’s riverfront location is adjacent to tourist sites such as the Museum of Science, Charles River boat tours, or even a stop at the CambridgeSide shopping mall. Continue reading for more of our visit to the Royal Sonesta Boston Hotel and spring break getaway to Boston.

Royal Sonesta Boston

Lobby and Foyer

Entering the Royal Sonesta Boston, we were greeted by the friendly desk staff.  Check-in was smooth, quick, and efficient, and the staff noted, we had a wonderful room with a view of the Charles River.

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The lobby hosted an evening reception for Sonesta Travel Pass members, and the “motif” lounge was hopping when we arrived. There were plenty of other cozy spaces with fireplaces to relax after a long day of travel.

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Accommodations

We loved the bright, blue colors of our modern room, and the large riverview suite included two soft, comfortable queen sized beds, a small lounge chair, desk, refrigerator, and large flat screen TV.

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The city lights of Boston and the Longfellow Bridge glimmered at night.

Royal Sonesta Boston

My daughter and I were hungry when we arrived, but curious about our neighborhood surroundings. We wanted to stretch our legs after the six hour drive, but didn’t feel like walking too far in unfamiliar territory. Fortunately, the CambridgeSide shopping complex was located just across the street from the hotel, and “World of Beer” with its tavern fare and craft brews satisfied our cravings perfectly. As a bonus, when we returned to the room, milk and cookies (and even a bottle of wine) capped our evening.

Royal Sonesta Boston

Restaurants and Dining

However, families don’t need to venture out of the Royal Sonesta Boston Hotel to eat. A large breakfast buffet is served in ArtBar each morning offering fresh made waffles, omelettes, breakfast meats and plenty of pastries. We enjoyed dinner at ArtBar too. First we shared the calamari between us to start. My daughter had the ArtBar burger with sweet potato tots, and I dined on butternut squash soup and gnocchi.

Royal Sonesta Boston

For a fine dining experience, there is also Dante – a second hotel restaurant with outdoor seating along the river. Dante is an Italian-inspired restaurant with pasta, steaks, and even a personalized 6-course chef’s tasting meal.

Royal Sonesta Boston

Studio is the hotel’s coffee shop and also offers grab and go breakfast items in addition to fancy coffee drinks.

Royal Sonesta Boston

Pool and Fitness Center

A high point for the Royal Sonesta Boston Hotel is their pool. The glass-enclosed atrium pool is the largest indoor pool in Boston, and offers spectacular views of the Charles River and city. A perfect escape for kids on a cold, wintry day.

Royal Sonesta Boston

The fitness facility sits adjacent to the pool with treadmills facing large windows looking into the atrium. The setup gave plenty to gaze upon during your workout. In addition there was plenty of other cardiovascular machines, free weights, and strength-training equipment.

Royal Sonesta Boston

Recreation and Activities

The Royal Sonesta Hotel Boston has an ideal location on the Charles River, and sits directly across the street from the CambridgeSide shopping complex. My daughter enjoyed bringing a huge Cheesecake Factory dessert back to our room night. You also have direct access to the dock of the Charles River Boat Company that offers sightseeing tours, sunset cruises, and architecture cruises up and down the river.

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In addition, the Royal Sonesta Boston Hotel is steps away from the Museum of Science, and offers a year-round “Little Scientist” package for families. When we checked into the hotel, my 18-year old daughter (who at 6-feet tall is decidely NOT small) turned to me and said, “I’m a little scientist.” She beamed when we were handed passes to the Museum of Science to use during our stay.

Museum Of Science Boston

After interviewing at Boston University, we went back to the hotel and walked over to the Museum of Science. Home to over 700 interactive exhibits, planetarium shows, and more, we learned about “Nature’s Superheroes,” saw dinosaurs, and strolled through the hall of Human Life.

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The Royal Sonesta Boston Hotel offered a perfect location for our family’s spring break. It had close proximity to the college (Boston University) our daughter needed to visit – plus there are numerous other world-famous higher education institutions in the immediate area such as MIT and Harvard just to name two. The Museum of Science is one of the largest science centers in New England. Plus, there are the historic sites of Boston including Paul Revere’s home, the Old North Church, and Freedom Trail close by. The Royal Sonesta Hotel Boston’s resort like setting worked exceedingly well for our spring break family trip.

DISCLOSURE: Dave Parfitt was hosted by the Royal Sonesta Boston Hotel and received complimentary accommodations, meals, and museum tickets.  However, all opinions expressed are also those of the author.  For more family travel news, reviews, and trip reports, be sure to follow Adventures by Daddy on instagramtwitter and “like” our facebook page too.

About Dave Parfitt

Married, father of two girls, and living in the heart of the Finger Lakes. I'm a runner with a PhD in neuroscience and a passion for travel.