Boston Pride celebrates its 48th anniversary this year, making it one of the nation’s oldest and largest LGBT pride organizations. Ahead of the June 1-10 Boston Pride Week, here are some of the city’s must-visit LGBT-friendly restaurants, bars, music, art and design venues — all within a short ride from the Hotel Indigo Boston-Newton Riverside:
Food & Drink
Since opening in 1983, Club Café in the South End has provided a one-stop venue for classic comfort food, drinks, cabaret and dancing under a disco ball.
Addictive cocktails and sassy Asian specialties headline the offerings at Myers+Chang, a buzzing café in the South End, where executive chef, Karen Akunowicz commands the stove. Get ready for her warm buns, spicy tuna poke and lamb Biang Biang noodles.
For more craft cocktails and a menu that riffs on classics like chicken tenders and seafood chowder, head to Trophy Room in the South End. The restaurant hosts Drag Race viewing parties on Thursdays and gay-themed brunches on Sundays.
Duck into Tiger Mama, a funky, South East Asian escape near Fenway Park for Tiki drinks and Chef Tiffani Faison’s, sizzling, pepper-torched fare, like Pad Thai salad, clay-pot chicken with chilies and fish sauce, and salt and pepper monkfish with condensed milk and oyster sauce (think sweet and salty).
Join the party at Jacque’s Cabaret, which puts the glam in glamorous with its bawdy, nightly drag shows, save for Tuesdays, which are karaoke nights. Drinks are available, but no food. (Note: You must reserve a table in order to see a show. )
Machine is an energetic gay hub pricked with brightly colored lights that attracts a diverse crowd eager to gyrate to its go-go party beat. The space also has multiple bars and a downstairs playroom, complete with arcade games, pool tables and several TVs. Theme nights range from Tuesday’s trivia to Sunday’s PJ party.
Dip into the Museum of Fine Arts Boston to see an impressive collection of homoerotica, splashed across ancient Greece vessels and in classic Chinese paintings and queer treasures from the Renaissance to present day. Currently showing through June 24 is (un)expected families, a collection of 80-plus images taken by American photographers of the American family in its many forms.
Perched on the edge of Boston’s waterfront, the dramatic glass and cantilever girded Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA) offers a global mix of contemporary works and performances in dance, music, theater and film. Don’t miss the museum’s gift shop filled with an eclectic blend of items from under-the-radar makers. (Free admission on Thursday nights, 5-9 p.m.).
Both established and emerging artists show their work at the 40th annual Coolidge Corner Arts Festival on June 2 in the heart of Brookline. Snap up creative finds, like colored canvas leather-bottom satchels, polymer and mixed metal cuffs, wooden charcuterie boards and candy-colored glass tumblers, while sampling local food trucks and brewers.
The Boston Society of Architects’ current exhibition is NatureStructure (running through Sept. 23), which displays various international projects that work in harmony with nature to solve certain environmental issues, such as the Denmark-designed above-ground parking garage, whose base absorbs excess rainwater.
The South End location for Boomerangs, one of four area thrift stores owned and operated by the AIDS Action Committee of Massachusetts, is a goldmine for high-end vintage clothes, home goods, jewelry and other merchandise, like men’s tweed blazers, Prada heels, silver demitasse spoons and cool leather jackets.
Down the cobbled sidewalk of Charles Street on Beacon Hill you’ll find OuiMillie, a boutique chock full of women’s apparel, jewelry and items for the home, like Peruvian wool blankets, trays, wall lights and coffee tables.