Eclectic, Exciting, & Diverse
Eclectic, cultured, and diverse, the South End is a vibrant, bustling neighborhood of Boston. On its beautiful tree-lined streets and brick sidewalks, cafes, boutiques, galleries, and shops offer an exciting urban lifestyle close to the heart of the city.
Known for cultural highlights, the South End is a culinary wonderland, drawing gourmet aficionados from all over the world. It is a favorite of food critics who flock to the Tremont Street and "Restaurant Row," to enjoy traditional and cutting edge cuisine in its many restaurants.
The South End is home to galleries, boutiques, the Boston Center for the Arts (BCA), Boston Medical Center and the school for the Boston Ballet. South End residents also have access to the conveniences of Foodies Market and are within a few minutes walk to the Back Bay's Copley Square and Prudential Center.
The South End has come into prominence long since it preceded Boston's Back Bay as a landfill project in the mid 1800's. Referred to as "the largest urban Victorian neighborhood in the country" on the National Register of Historical Places, the South End was originally part of a tidal marsh. The area was developed to provide relief for overcrowding in other neighborhoods, and to build a lucrative tax base. It was designed in large part by Architect Charles Bullfinch who imagined ornate gardens, parks and squares surrounding rows of Victorian Brownstones. Soil and gravel were brought in from Needham starting in the 1830s to fill out the neighborhood. In the 1850s affluent families were drawn to the beautifully planned community. A financial crisis in the 1870s and the lure of the newly emerging Back Bay led to the departure of many of the neighborhood's original residents. Tenements and lodging houses supplanted the luxurious private homes in the early 1900's. Eventually crime and poverty became dominant themes and the beautiful gardens and squares that Bullfinch envisioned fell casualty to neglect and deterioration. Following impassioned neighborhood revitalization programs initiated by the South End Historical Society in the 1960's, the 1970's brought in a new group of urban pioneers who began restoring many of the Victorian townhomes. The discontinuation of rent control in the 1990's re-tilted the neighborhood's landscape to more affluent professionals as residents. Even so, today the South End remains one of the most economically, ethnically and racially diverse neighborhoods of Boston.
The majority of the South End homes are comprised of mid-nineteenth century brick bowfront brownstone homes. The architectural styles represented include Italianate, Gothic Revival, Greek Revival, and French Second Empire.
Residents of the South End are close to Back Bay Station which houses the Orange Line, MBTA Commuter Rail, Amtrak, and Bus Lines. The MBTA Silver Line Bus runs continuously up and down Washington Street and provides a convenient commute into the Financial District. Routes I-93 and I-90 access points are within a five-minute drive.