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“Good option, great location for Harvard, Cambridge”

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Irving House at Harvard
Ranked #4 of 20 Cambridge B&B and Inns
GreenLeadersGold level
NJ
Level Contributor
165 reviews
88 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 151 helpful votes
“Good option, great location for Harvard, Cambridge”
Reviewed 4 February 2012

Located about a 10-15 minute walk from the Harvard metro stop, this is a not your typical bed and breakfast in the sense that it is not a few rooms in a small house, but rather has dozens of rooms over 4 floors. I had a double room with private bath (some rooms have shared bathrooms). My room was a decent size, with TV, bed, chair, desk and cabinet. The room was clean. Free wifi in the rooms. I was on the fourth floor – and based on previous experience was a bit nervous, since the higher you go the weaker the wireless signal usually is – but I had no problems with the internet or signal strength, it was fine.

Check in is a bit late, at 3pm. There is no elevator so if this is a problem for you ask for a lower floor. There is parking available on the street.

Staff was very friendly and helpful.

Breakfast was a buffet with a variety of options: yoghurt, cereal, oatmeal, bagels, croissants, toast, fruit, cheese, eggs (just hard boiled), and a nice variety of hot turnovers/quiches/filo/pies etc, as well as milk, juice, hot chocolate, tea and coffee.

This place also has some unique, and wonderful, perks. Each room has a few books available for you to not only read, but if you haven’t finished it, simply take it with you. They also provide postcards and will provide the stamp and send it for you! Some snacks and tea/coffee is available for most of the day as well. I arrived in the evening, and it was nice to have some apple bread and a roll so that I did not have to run out right away to get food. While certainly unnecessary, these all are a nice touch.

  • Stayed February 2012, travelled on business
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Helpful?
2 Thank move360
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
RachaelSolem, Owner at Irving House at Harvard, responded to this review, 5 February 2012
Thank you for this lovely review! I don't usually respond to kind reviews, but I have a small --but very important!--correction. Irving House is located on a residential street in Cambridge. ON street parking is for Resident Permit holders only, and Cambridge tickets aggressively. We provide off street parking on a first come, first served basis.
We are pleased you enjoyed your stay.
Rachael Solem
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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271 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
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  • Value
  • Cleanliness
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New York
Level Contributor
8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 February 2012

We stayed in the Irving House for six nights and were totally satisfied.

The place is a large house that has been converted into a homey property. I can't really call it a B&B, at least as I understand B&Bs, but more of a house hotel and a very nice one at that. Our room was en suite -- large, airy and light with a nice bathroom and a large closet. It was very clean.

The food provided for breakfast buffet and tea was fine. The breakfasts were vegetarian--eggs (but not to order), cheese, and other great treats (mini quiches, popovers, etc). The breads were superb and the coffee excellent--deep and rich. I was saying this morning that this is the first hotel I have ever been in that puts out properly ripe bananas--not hard green grassy bananas that you usually get. Bravi! Everything is local and fresh. After 10AM, there is coffee, tea, cookies, and some other baked goods. It was fun to come home after a day in the archive to have a tea and excellent spice cookie.

The location is ideal for Harvard--across the street. The T (Subway) is a 8 minute walk through Harvard Yard.

So our review of Irving House is ++++++.

Two restaurants we enjoyed: Russell House Tavern on JFK Street. It was a gastropub with good food and beers. It was filled with upscale young Harvard/Cambridge types. A bit noisy but we would go back.

Yenching on Mass Ave. Right across from Harvard, this chinese restaurant was much, much better than we expected. Most of the customers were Chinese students from Harvard having a taste of home (a good sign). The food we had -- Tea Smoked Duck, Fresh Veggies in Garlic Sauce, Dumplings--was just fine.

Dessert at JP Licks was a good local experience. This is a deluxe Ice Cream place that was lots of fun with excellent ice cream.

  • Stayed February 2012, travelled on business
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Helpful?
1 Thank Yaksha
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Atlanta, Georgia
Level Contributor
78 reviews
45 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 80 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 January 2012

If you're looking for lodging near Harvard Square, it's hard to imagine a better choice than Irving House. We expected a charming B&B at a reasonable price, and they certainly delivered that. Positive surprises beyond the usual included: wide variety of healthy home-made breakfast choices, delicious coffee, snacks all day (until 10pm) including fruit and great cookies, free off-street parking, extra room heater upon request and plenty of extra blankets, fantastic location convenient for walking to Harvard Square or driving elsewhere (without having to contend with Harvard Sq), interesting people doing short-term or longer-term visits to Harvard... Free wifi, with reasonable speed. Books that you are encouraged to take away with you. Wall St Journal, Boston Globe, and New York Times. We will definitely be back and will send all our friends here.

  • Stayed January 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank audace11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
VA
Level Contributor
12 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 January 2012

I stayed in The Irving House in Decermber as a few friends were staying there too. It was a good value for the location, but my room was a bit small, (a twin up against the wall) and had to share a bathroom which I am not a big fan of. But this was the only room that was available. The bigger rooms with the private baths were very nice. And the location is great with a 10-15 minute walk to Harvard Square. The breakfast was yummy and had a great variety. It reminded me of the European B&B's.

I would definitely stay here again. But would prefer a room with my own bath.

Room Tip: If you need space, choose the double or bigger rooms. The twin was fine for one night but could be...
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  • Stayed December 2011, travelled solo
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Helpful?
2 Thank L1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chicago, Illinois
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 9 January 2012

The Irving House really embodies the definition of hospitality and home-from-home. It was such a joy to stay there.
Highlights included:
- I stayed here for business but during my birthday. When Rachel, the manager, found out that it was my birthday, she gave me a room discount, a gift bag with local goodies in it, and giftcards to local shops and restaurants.
- The food! It's all locally sourced. When I arrived, I was welcomed to the kitchen for pie, tea, and hot apple cider. Breakfast is also a feast of local delicacies, including multiple kinds of eggs, jams, cheeses, fruits (dried + fresh), and veggies (olives and tomatoes). And there's afternoon/evening snacks, also locally baked, (cookies, cakes, savory pastries). Divine!
Also: The value for money is unbeatable. I opted for a single room w/shared bath for 70 dollars per night. It was never a problem to find a bathroom, which were always clean and well supplied. It's a delightful touch to have books - to take away - dotted around the house and its rooms. And the artwork and prints are beautiful.
Do, DO, stay there!
To Rachel, Leah, and all the staff - THANK YOU for a delightful visit to Cambridge.

  • Stayed January 2012, travelled on business
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank am9999
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Irving House at Harvard

Property: Irving House at Harvard
Address: 24 Irving St, Cambridge, MA 02138-3007
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Massachusetts > Cambridge
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 20 B&Bs / Inns in Cambridge
Price range (per night): $213 - $442
Hotel Class:3 star — Irving House at Harvard 3*
Number of rooms: 44
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Irving House is a quaint bed and breakfast in Cambridge offering uniquely cozy accommodations and a variety of amenities for our guests to enjoy. Built as a two-family house in the 1890s, Irving House was converted to a bed and breakfast in the 1920s with 44 unique guest rooms in a variety of sizes. There are many room types to accommodate the ranging needs of our guests, from individual travelers to families. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Irving House At Harvard Hotel Cambridge

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