Monday, August 3, 2009

Salem Businesses are Best of Boston, Best of North Shore

Boston Magazine showered praise and affection on a few deserving Salem business in their 2009 Best of Boston issue, as did North Shore Magazine in their annual Best of the North Shore (BONS) issue.
We are so excited to see our beloved businesses get this kind of attention! Did you have any idea there was so much to see, do, and eat in Salem!? Most of these winners are located in historic downtown Salem - the business district, if you will, so park your car and head out to explore!
Don't forget to congratulate our winners!

Boston Magazine - Best of Boston 2009

Rouge Cosmetics won Best Makeup (overall! Not just North!) The staff at Boston Magazine wrote this fabulous description of Rouge: Beauty Junkies can spend years perfecting their primping arsenals. If you’d prefer to skip beta-testing your makeup bag, though, let Rouge founder Ann Supple Massey do the work for you. A former cosmetis buyer at Filene’s, Massey vets every product with her staff, choosing only those deemed both innovative and effective. That makes for an appealing mix of old favorites (Nars, B. Kamins) and up-and-comers like Caudalie. Those who suffer from overstimulation at Sephora will appreciate Rouge’s manageable inventory and elegant interior, while cosmoholics love the staff’s exhaustive knowledge and occasional in-store appearances by beauty luminary Paula Dorf.

For the Best of the North, A& J King won in the Best Bakery category and the Peabody Essex Musem Shop won Best Gift Shop on the North Shore.

Here's how Boston Magazine described the PEM Shop: Even if the proceeds didn’t benefit Asian-art mecca the Peabody Essex Museum, we’d still spend like drunken Qing-dynasty mandarins here. There are all-occasion gifts like mariposa salad bowls alongside Far East-inspired finds both reverent (addictively collectible ‘netsukes’) and less so (pop-art trays printed with a bespectacled Pu Yi). Each new exhibit brings fresh goodies: Look for quirky jewelry and clothing to arrive this fall with “Rare Bird of Fashion”, showcasing style ican Iris Apfel.

Runner's Up included: Fringe Salon (Best Hair Salon), Sixty2 On Wharf (Best New Restaurant), and Downtown Salem (Best Shopping Spot). We are all very excited that Downtown Salem got the nod for Best Shopping! We know how great it is downtown - boutiques, wine shops, women's clothing, jewelry, and the fabulous Farmer's Market on Thursdays.

Locally, Northshore Magazine has announced their BONS awards, and Salem did well on this front, too!

Bakery (bread): A & J King Artisan Bakers, , 48 Central St., Salem, 978-744-4881,
Reader’s Choice: A & J King Artisan Bakery

Beer Selection, Reader’s Choice: Gulu Gulu Café, 247 Essex St., Salem, 978-740-8882,

Breakfast, Reader’s Choice: Red’s Sandwich Shop, 15 Central St., Salem, 978-745-3527,

Brunch: Nathaniel’s in the Hawthorne Hotel
It’s hard to go wrong with Sunday brunch at Nathaniel’s in the Hawthorne Hotel. With a top-notch, elegant atmosphere, live jazz, and a buffet selection that features just about every ingredient you could want in a brunch, this is what Sunday mornings were made for. » 18 Washington Sq. West, Salem, 978-744-4080,
Reader’s Choice: In a Pig’s Eye, 148 Derby St., Salem, 978-741-4436,

Coffee Shop: Jaho Coffee and Tea 197 Derby St., Salem, 978-744-4300,
Reader’s Choice: Jaho Coffee and Tea, 197 Derby St., Salem, 978-744-4300,

Gourmet, Reader’s Choice: The Grapevine, 26 Congress St., Salem, 978-745-9335,

Indian, Reader’s Choice: Passage to India, 157 Washington St., Salem, 978-832-2200,

Italian, Reader’s Choice: Bella Verona, 107 Essex St., Salem, 978-825-9911,

New Restaurant: Sixty2 on Wharf
Last year, Antonio Bettencourt set out to create a unique neighborhood bistro. Lucky for the North Shore that Bettencourt brought his passion and talent to Pickering Wharf in Salem with Sixty2 on Wharf. His attention to detail is evident in the ever-changing original wine list and creative menu that is a fusion of cultures and a celebration of the senses. Patrons joke that if Tony could make the furniture, he would. » 62 Wharf St., Salem, 978-744-0062,

Seafood, Reader’s Choice: Finz Seafood & Grill, 76 Wharf St., Salem, 978-744-8485,

Wine List, Reader’s Choice: Salem Wine Imports, 32 Church St., Salem, 978-741-9463, salemwine

Wine Shop, Reader’s Choice: Salem Wine Imports, 32 Church St., Salem, 978-741-9463,

Bar Scene: Strega
Cheers to Strega for creating a hip spot to share a small plate or a sip a martini and drink in the vibe. The spacious lounge area is comfy and full of personality, the ideal backdrop for bar drama. Whether you want to meet, be discreet, or just enjoy a drink and an app, you can find your spot at Strega.» 94 Lafayette St., Salem, 978-741-0004,
Reader’s Choice:Strega, 92 Lafayette St., Salem, 978-741-0004,

Karaoke: Fantasy Island
Fantasy Island may look peaceful during the day but on Friday and Saturday nights this place explodes with those looking to top the charts. When you’re in the mood to belt it out, the modern décor and low lighting make this stage the perfect venue.» 516 Loring Ave., Salem, 978-745-1700,
Reader’s Choice: Fantasy Island, 516 Loring Ave., Salem, 978-745-1700

Lounge: Strega, 92 Lafayette St., Salem, 978-741-0004,

Movie Theater, Reader's Choice: Cinema Salem, One East India Square, Salem, 978-744-1400,

Family Hangout (Rainy Day), Reader’s Choice: Peabody Essex Museum, 150 Essex St., Salem, 978-745-9500,

Kids Bookstore, Reader’s Choice: Cornerstone Books, 45 Lafayette St., Salem, 978-744-1831,

Maternity Clothing: Chulamama, 320 Derby St., Salem, 978-741-4600,

Hotel: Hawthorne Hotel
Salem’s historic Hawthorne Hotel brims with an old-fashioned New England charm that is both regal and relaxing. People-watching in the gracious lobby, enjoying a drink nestled near the fireplace at the Tavern, or delighting in a sumptuous brunch at Nathaniel’s are all part of the charm. Just walk out the door to Pickering Wharf or Front Street and sample many of Salem’s bewitching attractions.» 18 Washington Sq., Salem, 978-744-4080,

Makeup, Readers Choice: Rouge Cosmetics,322 Derby St., Salem, 978-740-1044,

Massage: Living Well
Frank Corcoran has made the world a better place by training his massage therapists to give the most knot-releasing, pain-freeing, relaxation-inducing massages, far superior to a dose of Percocet. He also has assembled a cadre of caring people who genuinely want you to live your life well. You leave LivingWell somewhere between cloud nine and over the moon.» 207 Washington St., Salem, 978-740-9355,

Bath & Beauty: Rouge Cosmetics
Just walking into Rouge Cosmetics makes you feel like the America’s Top Model title is within your grasp. Here, you’ll discover the ultimate lines of skin and body care and makeup, plus everything else you need to feel and look lovely. Great customer service, makeup lessons, and Girls’ Night Out Parties add to the allure.» 322 Derby St., Salem, 978-740-1044,

Bike Store, Readers’ Choice: Salem Cycle,72 Washington St.,Salem, 978-741-2222,

Bookstore, Readers’ Choice: Cornerstone Books, 45 Lafayette St., Salem, 978-744-1831,

Clothing (Vintage), Modern Millie
Do you yearn for the days of fashion yesteryear when women wore white gloves, long pearls, and short bobs? Look no more; Modern Millie is an adorable shop in downtown Salem, small in square footage but vast in vintage treasures. Pop in to find great dresses and accessories and good, old-fashioned friendly service.» 103 Washington St., Salem, 978-745-0231,’ Choice:Modern Millie, 103 Washington St., Salem, 978-745-0231, modern

Clothing (Women, Upscale), Readers’ Choice: J.Mode, 17 Front St., Salem, 978-744-7007,

Music Store: Record Exchange
Do you have a penchant for vinyl records and an ear for music? This cool music store doesn’t miss a beat. Record Exchange has been around for over 25 years and boasts a tremendous selection of vinyl records, CDs, DVDs, and VHS tapes. You’ll love the old-fashioned feel to the store, where the friendly staff knows a ton about music.» 256 Washington St., Salem, 978-745-0777.

Pet Store: The Barking Cat
The Barking Cat may sound like a paradox, but the name reflects owner Jeff McKee’s affinity for both dogs and cats. The shop is all about caring for pets and less about selling products; in fact, customers consistently report that McKee sells them just the essentials. Doggone good service and purrfect prices!» 266 Essex St., Salem, 978-745-2275,

Rugs: Landry & Arcari
Noted Oriental rug expert and owner of family-operated Landry and Arcari, Jerry Arcari is truly the King of Carpet. You can expect his staff to roll out the red carpet and help you select the perfect rug for your home from a great inventory of broadloom carpeting and the most exquisite Orientals. The gorgeous new showroom in Salem presents a tapestry of decorating ideas.» 63 Flint St., Salem, 978-744-5909,

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