Cambridge Neighborhoods in Focus: Inman Square

Inman Square in Cambridge, MA, is located at the junction of Cambridge, Hampshire, and Inman Streets.  It is situated near the Cambridge-Somerville border.  The name “Inman Square” refers to both the intersection as well as the neighborhood surrounding it.  It is a vibrant and bustling commercial and retail center filled with eclectic shops and restaurants.

About Inman Square

Inman Square prides itself on being one of the last areas comprised completely of owner-run businesses.  You’ll find no chain stores or franchises here.  Because of this, Inman Square has wonderful character with a wide array of interesting stores, boutiques, taverns, bars and eateries.

Inman Square is a great place for Somerville and Cambridge homebuyers who want to be able to walk to shops and restaurants.  The neighborhood features many condos in multi-family dwellings or above commercial spaces.  There are some newer complexes in the area with loft-style units that are located on Tremont and Norfolk Streets.  Inman Square also features a few single family homes.  Prices for homes and condos in Inman Square range from $200,000 to $900,000.

Inman Square is part of the Boston Basin and is a short walk east of Harvard Square, north of Central Square, west of Lechmere (East Cambridge), and south of Union Square.  It generally includes the area centered around the intersection of Cambridge and Hampshire Streets.  It is a culturally diverse neighborhood with a combination of working professionals, students and professors from nearby MIT and Harvard.

History of Inman Square

Inman Square gets its name from Ralph Inman, a Boston merchant who owned about 400 acres of land in the area.  He owned a large mansion in Cambridge, which was occupied by Israel Putnam during the Revolutionary War.

Inman Square originated in the late 1700s with the growth of East Cambridge.  By the 1860s horse carts were popular in the area and dwellings began being constructed around their routes.  By 1900 the area had streetcar service and became known as an urban center, which continued well into the 1950s.

In the 1960s and 1970s, Inman Square was known for the improv comedy troupe The Proposition as well as the comedy acts that performed at the Ding Ho restaurant.  Some comedians who got their start here include Jane Curtin, Steven Wright, Bobcat Goldthwait, Paula Poundstone, Dennis Leary and Jay Leno.  It was also a center for the women’s movement of the 1970s and was home to the feminist bookstore New Words.

Inman Square Shopping and Dining

Inman Square boasts some of the best shopping and dining in Cambridge, including:


  • Bird by Bird (kid’s apparel)
  • Boutique Fabulous
  • Bow Street Flowers
  • City Paint
  • Inman Square Hardware
  • Lorem Ipsum Books
  • Salon Bellissima
  • Stellabella Toys
  • The Feathered Nest
  • The Oasis (massages and hot tub rentals)


  • 1369 Coffeehouse
  • All Star Sandwich Bar
  • Atwood’s Tavern
  • Bukowski’s Tavern
  • Café Kiraz
  • Casa Portugal Restaurant
  • Christina’s Ice Cream
  • City Girl Café
  • Dali Restaurant
  • East Coast Grill
  • Kebab Factory
  • Ole Mexican Grille
  • Oleana
  • Rosie’s Bakery
  • Ryle’s Jazz Club
  • S&S Restaurnat
  • Spice and Rice
  • The Biscuit
  • The Druid
  • Thirsty Scholar Pub

More Information about Inman Square

To learn more about Inman Square in Cambridge, MA, CLICK HERE to speak with Ed Greable.

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