Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum
This eclectic museum occupies a meticulous replica of a Venetian palazzo and showcases an unparalleled collection of old masters, Gothic tapestries, and Renaissance furniture. Until 1924, the three-story manse—centered on an interior courtyard filled with ancient Greek statuary and blooming delphinium and Cape primrose—was also the home of its namesake, a mining heiress with an extraordinary eye for art.
Tip: On Sundays the museum hosts live performances by its own chamber-music ensemble; there’s also jazz on some Thursday nights (call ahead).
Admission: $12 adults, $10 seniors, free for children under 18; all named "Isabella" admitted free forever. Closed Monday.
Congratulations to Mei Lin, winner of Top Chef Season 12.