Back Bay

In Every City

-page 2 Albright-

Duck Tour buses frequently quack theirway down the shopping artery of Newbury Street.

Kressel and Mauet both stress that Newbury Street and the Back Bay have lost the one-of-kind stores that it used to have.

For example, Mauet said, there used to be a little quirky restaurant on Newbury between Clarendon and Dartmouth called Travis’ Restaurant. Leo Travis was both the owner of the restaurant and the building that it was in. When Travis passed away, the restaurant died with him. While he was alive, he was able to operate the store because he only had to pay himself rent.

Today, Back Bay renters are in a market that values rental space no matter the size. Smaller, privately owned businesses are pushed out by the upscale and wealthy businesses that can afford high rents.

“It’s all market driven,” said Mauet. “Landlords have different attitudes. Renters chased out the funkier types of businesses.”

On Memorial Day this year, the Avenue Victor Hugo Bookshop, open on Newbury Street for 29 years, will close because it can no longer afford the rent. Victor Hugo specialized in used and rare books.

“ Most of the business has always been regulars and that is partly why we have lost so much business,” said Vincent McCaffrey, the original and current owner of the bookshop. “The regulars have left and the Back Bay has changed into a different community.”

Back Bay natives said that a vital part of the community on Newbury Street is the 1,000 or so residents who live above the shops and restaurants. They feel that it is essential to maintain this mixture of residents and business as it was in the old days, when stores were in the bottom floor and their customers lived above.

“It’s important to keep the mixture,” said. Mauet.

-page 3 A Community for tourists?-


Article 1

Back Bay’s changing storefronts

  -In every city
-A community for tourists?

Article 2

Back Bay loses a treasured bookstore


-Closing in

-Old friends

-Moving online

-A quote from Vincent


Avenue Victor Hugo Bookshop

Back Bay Home



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