When people think of East Boston, they most likely think of Logan Airport or the place where a casino was supposed to go. Often times, people don’t think of it as a Boston neighborhood; even though ‘Boston’ is half of it’s namesake. Separated from the rest of the city by Boston Harbor, there are many reasons why you should jump in the tunnel and check out all Eastie has to offer! Given it’s proximity to the harbor and downtown, it makes for the best views of Boston’s skyline; night or day!
East Boston has always been an epicenter for new immigrants to the city; which makes it arguably the most diverse neighborhoods in Boston. You can’t walk a block without seeing a (cheap!) restaurant from a country who’s cuisine you’ve never tried! In one city block, Honduras, Mexico, Pakistan, Australia, Italy, El Salvador and America are all represented. It really is an untapped Mecca for foodies! One of the most notable restaurants in all of Boston is located on Chelsea Street; just outside the Sumner and Callahan Tunnels. Santarpio’s Pizza has been in business since 1903! If you’ve braved the lines around the block for a table, you’ve probably noticed not much as changed since they opened!
One thing most people don’t know about East Boston is that John F Kennedy was born there; his (modest) family home was located on Meridian Street and the Kennedys eventually went on to purchase more homes throughout the neighborhood. In 1954, then congressman, JFK, and his wife Jackie O, paraded through the streets of East Boston to help drum up support for his upcoming Senate race. Here they are in front of Santarpio’s!
Nothing says East Boston like a ‘Triple Deckah’! These multi-family homes line all of Eastie’s streets and were (and still are) how extended families live together. Generally, the grandparents are on the first floor while the top two floors are occupied by their children and grandchildren. Though these triple deckahs are increasingly being converted in to condos, they’re a great representation of how important families are to immigrants and non-immigrants alike.
In recent decades, people have discovered all the greatness that Eastie has to offer and is growing into one of the most popular neighborhoods for young professionals. I have lived in the Jeffries Point neighborhood of East Boston for four and a half years and it has already changed so much! The waterfront is being developed, parks are being built, and businesses are flourishing! It is only one stop on the blue line from Faneuil Hall, the North End, and two stops from Downtown. Given that it’s so close to the airport, it is one of the most accessible, and easiest to find, areas to get to by car.
So if you haven’t been to Eastie in a while, come on over! Take a walk on the Harborwalk, check out some of the new restaurants or just stick with one of the best and grab a pie at Santarpio’s for just $10! You’ll be so glad you did!