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Boston Area Best Attractions 2010

Boston Area Best Attractions 2010
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by in May 2010

Best Movie Theater
KENDALL SQUARE CINEMA, Cambridge
There is life beyond the megaplex, and here it is: a smart mixture of classics, foreign, and independent films. Perks include fresh pastries and coffee, plus inexpensive parking. 1 Kendall Square. 617-499-1996; landmarktheatres.com

Best Toy Store
HENRY BEAR’S PARK, Brookline, Cambridge, Arlington
Books for all ages, retro and wooden toys, hard-to-find gems such as Calico Critters, and plenty of play space and unpackaged toys so that tykes can get down to business. 19 Harvard St., Brookline, 617-264-2422; Porter Square Shopping Center, Cambridge, 617-547-8424; 685 Massachusetts Ave., Arlington, 781-646-9400; henrybear.com

Best Women’s Shoes
MOXIE, Boston
The selection here is meant for real women who walk in real shoes. The flats selection alone is impressive–but there’s also a solid stock of comfy-but-cute boots and wedges, plus pretty heels that can go from the office to a night on the town without skipping a beat. 51 Charles St. 617-557-9991; moxieboston.com

Best Local Theater Group
AMERICAN REPERTORY THEATER, Cambridge
For decades, Harvard’s resident theater has sat on the innovative edge, reinventing classic dramas and rolling out new ones. But under new artistic director Diane Paulus, the company brings the audience into the action, turning A Midsummer Night’s Dream into a night at Studio 54, recasting Macbeth as a Hitchcock thriller, and reimagining the Red Sox as a musical. Loeb Drama Center, 64 Brattle St. 617-547-8300; americanrepertorytheater.org

Best Children’s Furnishings
BAMBINI, Brookline
Just because your tykes prefer primary colors and cartoons doesn’t mean they can’t live it up, too. Bambini imports adorable-but-streamlined pieces from France and Italy (many of which convert to become new furniture as junior grows), plus must-have accents and gear, from Bugaboos to super-plush mobiles. 82 Boylston St. 617-730-4114; bambinidesignonline.com

Best Women’s Clothing
GRETTA LUXE, Boston
Of course you can go to Manhattan. Or Paris. Or Milan. But why bother with any of that, when you can swing through the international collections at this airy boutique–all of them chosen and edited for a New Englander’s sensibility? Westin Copley Place, 10 Huntington Ave. 617-536-1959; grettaluxe.com

Best Gift Shop
BLISS, Boston
An incredibly well-curated spot for one-stop shopping. For your great aunt, a superb collection of Bernardaud; for your best friend, some of the most unique keychains around; for your kids, the cutest plates, onesies, and stuffies imaginable. And for you? How about the Mandarina Duck messenger bags that make carrying anything, anywhere, a cinch? 225 Newbury St. 617-421-5544; blisshome.com

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