Posted on March 9, 2012
As part of Boston Magazine‘s Best Places to Live 2012 feature in the recent March issue, the monthly magazine included the segment – “Swanky Town Smackdown! How Boston’s Best, Fanciest, Suburbs Stack Up.” The magazine touted the 10 Best Suburbs of Boston as Brookline, Weston, Lincoln, Wellesley, Manchester, Newton, Winchester, Lexington, Concord and Belmont (in order of the highest to lowest median home price). And the towns were then rated on the following categories:
- Prettiest Outdoor and Green Spaces- Wellesley is the winner – “For having everything from English gardens to a sandy pond beach.”
- Main Street/Town Center Cuteness Rating (Scale of 1 – 10) – Concord is the winner – “For its quintessential New England appeal. It’s the perfect spot for a Sunday-morning walk.” Concord scored a “perfect 10,” and Lexington was a close second with 9.5.
- Commute Time to Boston- Winchester is the winner – “For its lack of T crossings and lights. Sorry, Brookline!” Brookline and Winchester both shared a commute time of 16 minutes, while Weston and Wellesley clocked in at 26 minutes.
- Cool Boutiques and Shops- Wellesley is the winner again – “For the chic trio of Gretta Luxe, Moxie and Hudson.” (Note that Hudson recently closed its doors in Wellesley but still has a location in Boston’s South End.)
- Notable Restaurants- Brookline is the winner – “For its tasty range of dining options, from beer bars to tapas spots.”
- Upscale Pampering Spots- Wellesley is the winner for the third time – “For having the poshest ahhh-inducing retreats of the bunch.”
- BMAG School Ranking – Concord is the winner for the second time – “For its stellar test scores and more.” Just for the record, Concord’s rank was #2, and Weston was #3. (Note that there wasn’t a #1 ranking on the chart.)
- Famous Residents – Newton is the winner – “For inspiring some of our favorite comedians [namely Friends actor Matt LeBlanc (and half of The Office cast)].”
As the magazine attests, these suburbs are “pretty, prestigious and priced accordingly. But when it comes to livability, which gold-standard suburb reigns supreme?” Well…according to Boston Magazine, the Overall Winner is – drumroll please – our near and dear neighboring town of Wellesley! Congratulations to Wellesley – it won three of the eight categories, which was more than any of the other towns. I guess that means that Concord is the Runner-up since it won two of the eight categories. If we continue to use this method of determining winners (namely how many categories a town won), then Winchester, Brookline and Newton would be Honorable Mentions, having each won one category.
What are your thoughts? Is Wellesley the most livable of the Boston suburbs? Or is there another town which is more deserving of the win? I can’t wait to hear….