About this listing
Ensuite full private bath and bedroom w/ queen-size bed. Safe, clean, well-priced, and full of eclectic charm. Close to Boston, universities; 1.5 blocks from major transportation hub. Wifi, off-street parking. AirBnB Superhosts four years running. Please read DETAILED DESCRIPTION before inquiring to book.
**Please read our entire listing, including 'house rules', so you know what to expect. Also, PLEASE DO NOT MAKE A RESERVATION until after we've responded to your inquiry. Four night minimum.**
Listen to the rustling trees at night and the birds in the morning. Comfortable, clean, quiet, second floor room with private en suite full bath. Hanging closet plus armoire for clothes. No TV: Room is chock full of books. Queen-size fold-out is Italian Ligne Rosset design, both chic and (ALL our guests report) EXTREMELY COMFORTABLE with thick duvet for winter (NO nasty bars in this fold-out. Will comfortably sleep large people!)(NOT a futon). The cat you see sunning in the window in the photo is very friendly but not intrusive, and you can close the doors to the suite to keep him out.
This is an arty house with loads of character, and we always have a construction project or two going on--we've just built a new porch and are painting the front entry the colors we recall from visiting Rome. While the house is old (it's got an official historic designation) and worn, and the outside has plenty of peeling paint, everything inside is super-clean and neat. Usually. One guest has called it "like entering a Narnia closet".
Centrally located. We are 1.5 blocks from Union Square, a major transit hub. Multiple buses going everywhere are 1.5 blocks away and very frequent. Kindly note that Boston has a shared system of bus and rail, not rail supplemented by bus, so don't think of it that way-- we don't. Boston and region regularly scores 3rd - 5th in studies on the quality of public transit systems in USA cities. Somerville shares a border with Boston and is a primary bedroom community for people working there, and so is considered very convenient-- but it's not NYC or London, there's no comparison. Some parts of Boston will take 20 minutes to get to, others may take an hour. Please consult the MBTA website before inquiring to book to confirm your travel needs. We are 1.2 miles to Harvard University; 1.6 miles to Davis Square; 1.4 miles to MIT (all walkable and scenic routes in nice weather, buses go regularly to all); 2 miles to downtown Boston.
-Free, fast, reliable wireless internet
-Free, private off-street parking
-Use of washer/dryer for guests staying a week or more
-LIGHT use of kitchen
-Fans for hot-weather cooling. No AC. Please note that Boston can have heat waves.
-Two great porches with flowers and umbrella, relax or work there in warmer months
-Relax in dining room and set up your computer there if you like
-Hang out in the living room (see our other listing) when there are no guests staying in it (please note we sometimes rent this room out, too).
-Lots of printed resources, occasional free passes and tickets!
-Let us help with your itinerary!
Neighborhood is diverse, friendly and safe. We don't serve breakfast. Great “ethnic” groceries and excellent cafés are steps away (as well as pubs, music and a full range of restaurants). A farmers market operates in Union Square (one block away) on Saturdays, and there are art festivals and outdoor concerts. Yoga studios, dancing, a large maker space, and a chocolate factory are within five minutes' walk. We’ve lived in the Boston area for more than 30 years and are extremely social, so can direct you to pretty much anything here-- bicycle routes, foodie and art events, sports, the cheapest car rentals. If you're traveling in greater New England, we're also happy to help you plan your trip to get the most out of it.
You may wish to read 'HOUSE RULES' for further info, thanks.
Sorry for this long list, but we've found your happiness depends on knowing what to expect.
-No smoking in the house (but it's OK on one of our two porches).
-No pets. Sorry, we have a cat, and cat is House Owner. You cat people, you know what we mean. Stay here ONLY if you like cats, HAVE HAD EXPERIENCE interacting with animals (this one is a sweetie, but he does have claws and teeth!) and don't have allergies! We mean this, now.
-No guests except those registered in advance.
-Use the kitchen for LIGHT cooking, at reasonable hours.
-Shoeless house: you may wish to bring slippers.
-Please do not wear perfumes or colognes. They can be overwhelming and irritating. If you need to use a topically applied medication or body cream, please chose non-greasy, reasonably scentless varieties: No BenGay type ointments, please; no oils that will stain sheets, thank you.
-In winter, we keep the interior temperature of our house at around 65°F / 18°C during the day, less at night. This is common for the Northeast USA where energy costs are high and old houses leak heat badly. Everyone here wears sweaters indoors, sometimes two. Please plan accordingly.
-Generally, check-in time not before 3PM and check-out is by 11AM. Please expect to arrange an arrival time that is mutually agreeable, a reasonable interval in advance. If we don't have guests arriving the day you leave, a later check-out is possible. It may be possible to leave your luggage or car here before check-in or after checkout, please ask. We try very hard to accommodate our guests.
-If you wish to take occupancy of the room before noon, we must charge you for the previous night in order to hold the room available to you.
-We have determined, alas, that our house is not particularly toddler- or child-friendly. No guests under 8 years old, please. With apologies, only two people, really, to this room: A child is a person, thanks.
...and some extra notes:
-Like most New England homes, our house is built of wood and slightly creaky. Our heating system is also classic-- steam radiators. It is the nature of radiators to hiss and bang once in a while as the system adjusts itself. Occasionally someone finds these things odd.
One of us is a Zen priest, former around-the-world sailor and occasional financial consultant, and the other is primarily an arts marketer and artist who used to write on green building technologies. We've been married 25 years and still like it. We love art and good food and spending money on adventures rather than stuff. We don’t own a TV or a dishwasher because most of our pottery and hand-made glass won’t work in one, anyway. We are friendly with our tenants (professional musicians), know all our neighbors, and love the outdoors.
We’ve owned our house, an 1870s Victorian, for 19 years and live on the 2nd and 3rd floors (we rent out the 1st floor to our long-time tenant). It’s on a quiet, sunny street of other Victorians on the South side of Prospect Hill, just above Union Square in Somerville, considered one of the most vibrant, varied cities in the USA. There is a carriage house out back, which is John's Zendo. You are welcome to sit with us-- meditation is at 06:30 every morning. The property in general is on a slow non-schedule of both renovation and benign neglect, as well as some outright dereliction. There are always several construction projects in process. The inside of the house is charming, full of art and books, and is what people call Bohemian.
There’s a parking area in between the two buildings for four cars which you can use if you've got one, and we also use this area for parties on occasion and for grilling, and for setting up the inflatable palm trees and wading pool and showing movies. There’s a garden.
And yes, fire spinning in the driveway is an option. Life motto? "Nothing exceeds like excess."