I’m no stranger to Linden Square, a shopping and eating destination located in Wellesley, Massachusetts about 30 minutes from downtown Boston. One of my favorite brunch options in Greater Boston is located there and our absolute favorite Boston area toy store has a location there. But other than those two stores plus the Starbucks and the Roche Bros. grocery store, I haven’t really explored the other shops at Linden Square.
So when I was invited on a media tour, I jumped on the opportunity. Come along with me as I discover not only some great places to grab knock-it-out-of-the-park holiday gifts, but also some great places to shop and visit year round.
First up was Roosters. Roosters calls itself a “Men’s Grooming Center.” What’s that you ask? Think old school barbershop atmosphere with modern service offerings. Their customers are primarily men but they also take boys. A gift card to Roosters would be a great gift for the guy in your life. Here is one of the employees getting ready to show the bloggers the fine art of the straight razor WITH A BALLOON. Can you believe that no balloons popped? Pretty great skills.
Next up was a stop at Salon Maleah. The salon is strictly a hair care salon offering color service and Paul Mitchell products. It’s comfortable and would be a great option for a gift card for that friend or family member. Pair it with some of their very affordable but cute jewelry accessories to make the perfect gift. Here is a couple of bracelets that caught my eye.
While we were visiting, a Salon Maleah stylist talked quick holiday twists using a few of the bloggers as models. Two really good tips to help your bobby pins hold longer? 1. Spray your bobby pins with hairspray before you put them in your hair and 2. put the bobby pins in bumpy side towards the scalp. Look at this gorgeous twist.
We moved along to my favorite toy store in Greater Boston (and now Fairfield, CT too!), Magic Beans.
Ben, the manager in Wellesley, gave us a few ideas about toys that are hot for gift giving along a range of ages including this q-ba-maze 2.0 marble game and building set that I immediately put on the list for my six-year-old.
I love to shop at Magic Beans because there’s an activity center for kids to explore while you shop. AND they will wrap anything you buy for free (all year long, not just at the holidays). The owners are parents and you can tell from the quality of inventory.
Magic Beans’ first store (it’s still there!) was in Coolidge Corner in Brookline. Same goes for our next two stops, Kenzie and Tiny Hanger both had their first stores in Coolidge Corner.
Kenzie carries fashion and accessories for tweens, teens, and even mom! If you have a teen or tween in your life, this would be a great place to shop. Look at these cute pillows (see the donut pillows?) they have in store right now.
And here are some cute headbands for mom.
Next door at Tiny Hanger (you can also walk through from Kenzie), there are SO MANY cute things for your little ones. Here are some of the best shoes for babies called Kaya’s Kloset, and they are handmade by a mom in Brookline. I loved these when my guy was a baby. They REALLY stayed on his feet.
Here are more cute things. A Tuff Kookooshka Raccoon Hat.
Next up was Bonsoir, a store for your home. My first thought as I walked in to this store was GORGEOUS. Everywhere I turned there was something I was ready to take home.
Bonsoir gave us a demonstration on how to fold napkins. I’m looking forward to this holiday season so I can try the different folds out. They have quite a number of options for tablecloths and napkins and a TON of information. Don’t be afraid to go in and ask a lot of questions. The staff is very approachable with a ton of information about things like how to buy a tablecloth that won’t stain, etc.
The store is gorgeous.
Such cute Christmas ornaments. This raccoon was my favorite.
The ladies at Bonsoir cued us on in on this amazing fabric with crystals on it that makes a great table runner. I fell in love with the green one. It would be great for holidays and throughout the year. I can’t wait to get it on my table.
The very next store we visited, Sara Campbell, was also a gorgeous store.
Sara Campbell is an American designer of very smart looking clothes that are both flattering and designed for comfort. And beautiful. It’s a great place to stop by for something special to wear to a holiday party. Or for a gift for your best girlfriend. It’s also perfect if you are looking for a few basic pieces for style refresh.
Sara Campbell partners with wardrobe stylists at Shift Your Style.
And Sara Campbell has a ton of gorgeous cashmere. I’m still dreaming about these scarves.
Are you still with me? We’re almost done with our tour, but there’s still so much goodness left to share with you. Next up was the Tobey Grey Boutique.
As soon as I walked in, I saw this shirt, and I knew I liked their attitude.
Cute jewelry too.
Their cashmere sweaters were gorgeous. This one with the white sleeves was cute, and I’m eyeing it for my husband for Christmas. They call it baseball style.
Just two more stops before lunch. This stop was at Ceri Boutique, a shop for women’s fashion and accessories. So many beautiful clothes – cashmere sweaters and leather jackets.
These little accessory bags caught my eye.
And lots of jewelry items to choose from as well.
Then we were off to Bella Sante, a day spa with a wide variety of services including manicures, pedicures, and spa offerings. This is another great option for a gift card gift that will be treasured. They even have cute accessories that you can pair a gift card with give your recipient something small to open at the exchange.
We heard about their new massage offering called the Five Element Whole Body Ritual (available only in Wellesley). It sounds absolutely delightful.
Finally, it was time for lunch, but Linden Square didn’t stop showing off it’s awesome. We had lunch at The Cottage. The Cottage is one of my favorite places for brunch on Sundays, but I don’t often get to enjoy lunch there.
While we were waiting, we heard a little bit about Unleashed by PETCO which is also located at Linden Square for all your pet care needs in an environment that feels like a neighborhood store. And other bloggers told us about the Pure Barre Studio that some had visited.
We shared a few appetizers including the delicious Aloha Chicken Tenders with the papaya buffalo sauce and the Sesame Ahi Tuna Nachos. I had a bowl of their famous Chicken Tortilla soup which you can never go wrong with and a chicken salad sandwich. The stuffed avocado with quinoa, available only at lunch, was also a hit.
When you find yourself at The Cottage, don’t leave without grabbing a bag of the house-made granola to go. It’s so yummy and goes perfect with some yogurt for a morning treat. It would make a superb hostess gift as well.
Last, but so seriously not least, we headed over to Impulse for dessert and to see a little bit of what they had to offer.
I really loved the look of the custom jewelry from the Heather B. Moore Collection. It would make a great gift for a special occasion or holiday.
We also heard about the Sisco & Berluti Collection which are these colorful beaded creations from two sisters in Westwood, MA.
These bracelets can be stacked. I seriously want one in every color. Perfect gift for your bestie or, honestly, yourself!
My head is spinning from the tour. So many good options for gifts or even treats for myself. If you get a chance, spend an afternoon shopping at Linden Square. Grab some lunch or a coffee and see if you find even more great things.
If you go:
Linden Square Wellesley
181 Linden Street
Disclosure: I attended a media event and left with a giftbag, but all opinions and product finds are my own.