A Refined Point of View: Ashley McKinney’s Boston

Driving between the historical and the contemporary in Massachusetts’ capital city

Presented in partnership with Land Rover

A hub of history, culture and academia, Boston is a beautiful city to explore—especially in the all-new 2020 Range Rover Evoque from Land Rover, whose sleek lines and curves appear striking upon cobblestones and next to centuries-old architecture. We hopped in the city-focused compact SUV with Boston local, graphic designer and passionate photographer, Ashley McKinney. Together we searched the city for enticing images at destinations as revered as a 19th century library and as overlooked as a parking garage. The results are equally lovely, and the stories aplenty. As McKinney tells us, “Boston feels like a piece of history that people need to see.”

by Josh Rubin

Founded in 1807, the Boston Athenæum is among the oldest independent libraries in the country and continues to inspire “reflection, discourse, creative expression, and joy.” Behind the red leather doors of 10 1/2 Beacon Street are five floors of wonder: rare books, antique photos, marble busts, paintings, and domed ceilings adorned with chandeliers. The basement is home to the Art Department, where shelves are lined with new and old books, periodicals and more. The Reference Department is on the second floor and contains everything from fiction to monthly and quarterly publications. The Athenæum also has several silent reading rooms for those who want to take a seat in one of the green velvet chairs and disappear for a while.

by Josh Rubin

Located in Beacon Hill, Acorn Street is a charming cobblestone lane that’s lined by 19th-century houses with verdant window boxes. With two narrow brick sidewalks, the road was laid back in 1823 and, in the 1980s, the Acorn Street Association successfully protested the city paving over the river stones. It’s since become a popular destination for visitors, but it remains a private, residential street—home to Boston locals.

by Josh Rubin

A 15-minute drive from Acorn Street, over the stunning Zakim Bridge that spans the Charles River, lies Paul Revere Park. The bridge, was named for civil rights activist Lenny Zakim, and the park below offer respite for locals and visitors to the city. From the park’s oval (which is often used for outdoor performances), the cable-stayed bridge is visible, casting a delightful contrast between the grassy meadow and the striking architectural accomplishment.

by Josh Rubin

Just next to Rowes Wharf, the Boston Harbor Hotel is located right on the water—and its 60-foot arch lends dimension to the city’s skyline. The archway connects Atlantic Avenue and the waterfront, and the public plaza below serves as a thoroughfare and destination of its own. The hotel offers 232 guest rooms, a private slip, and (of course) remarkable harbor views.

by Josh Rubin

Not far from the Harbor Hotel, cobblestoned North Square sits at the intersection of Moon, Prince, North, Garden Court and Sun Court Streets in the city’s North End. A historic crossing, it was once the location of Boston’s grandest houses and is now lined by stores, restaurants, cafes, public art and the newly restored Paul Revere House.

by Josh Rubin

While many parking garages are forgettable, Pi Alley‘s is undeniably—and perhaps surprisingly—photogenic, thanks to its brutalist appearance and satisfying curves. Located in downtown Boston, Pi Alley got its name one of two ways, according to local lore: either for the meat pies that were sold there during the late 19th century, or for the newspaper printers’ pied type (letter tiles) that would be dropped on the streets. Regardless of the name’s origin, this is another place where visitors and locals can soak up the blend of eras.

The 2020 Range Rover Evoque is all about refinement—it’s entirely redesigned, but immediately recognizable. Check out A Refined Point of View for Ashley’s photos and more videos from the Boston stop on our tour of 10 American cities.