Cookie banner

This site uses cookies. Select "Block all non-essential cookies" to only allow cookies necessary to display content and enable core site features. Select "Accept all cookies" to also personalize your experience on the site with ads and partner content tailored to your interests, and to allow us to measure the effectiveness of our service.

To learn more, review our Cookie Policy, Privacy Notice and Terms of Use.

clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

From Baked Beans to Barneys: Back Bay's All-in-One Retail Destination

Racked is no longer publishing. Thank you to everyone who read our work over the years. The archives will remain available here; for new stories, head over to, where our staff is covering consumer culture for The Goods by Vox. You can also see what we’re up to by signing up here.

Though Boston's swanky Newbury Street retail corridor is home to a handful of fashion's boldest-faced names—think Burberry, Marc Jacobs and Chanel—the strip is better known for quirky boutiques, fabulous dining, an ample serving of Boston crunch and a shop devoted exclusively to fairies. So for brands—the big, global, crazy-lux brands—head to Copley Place and the Prudential Center.

Essentially two malls—yes, malls—the spaces are linked by a series of glass tubes, swank hotels, varied wings of retail and outdoor/indoor garden-scapes. For anchors, the malls boast a Barneys New York, a Neiman Marcus, a Saks Fifth Avenue and a Lord & Taylor. At its center: New England's most famous (and kinda ugly) building—the Prudential Tower. And in between: Gucci, Frette, Bally, Louis Vuitton, Coach, Tiffany & Co., Vince, Stuart Weitzman, Tumi, Emporio Armani, Dior and Lacoste (plus another Burberry).

The decidedly higher-end Copley Place is darker, quieter, hallowed—clad in red and brown marble and featuring that three-story Neiman Marcus with the monumental installation of flying birds running the height of its endless escalators. Also: Gap, J.Crew, Victoria's Secret, Sony, the Art of Shaving.

Across Huntington Avenue is the Prudential Center—brighter, airier, noisier, with a full food court, a Cheesecake Factory, a Barnes & Noble, a Sephora and a Club Monaco. Don't worry: Both sides have their own Legal Sea Foods restaurants—a Boston mainstay for both traditional and innovative New England fish-centric cuisine. Plus, there's a gym, several bank branches, a spa at the new Mandarin Oriental, at least one Starbucks, two independent confectioners on top of a Godiva, and a litany of other varying shopping and services. What we're saying is: If you live there or you stay there, you really never have to leave there.
· Copley Place [Simon]
· Prudential Center [Official Site]