My Favorite Places On / Around Campus

Category Student Voices

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Risa Komatsu
Risa Komatsu Class of '21
Authored on April 16, 2021

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As the campus re-opens next semester, I am excited for the new and returning students to get to experience the various spaces on and around campus!

As I look back on my 4 years (2.5 of which I lived on campus), I would like to share some of my favorite places.

Basement of Stone Hall (Quincy House)
If you are lucky enough to be sorted into Quincy House (for more information about being sorted into Houses, look at the blog here), the basement of Stone Hall is a great place to study or hang out with friends! Stone Hall is one of the two buildings in which students sorted into Quincy House live, and there are various common rooms for studying or just hanging out. The Quincy House Committee also sometimes hosts "Festas" in this space, which are social events (often with free food!) for students in Quincy House to get together and make new friends.

6 students sitting in common room couches

Hanging out in the Stone Hall Basement

This room also has a kitchen, so my friends and I made apple pie together! (From left to right: Hilina Woldemichael ('21), Melissa Yamada ('21), Matthew Giles ('21), Benjamin Ho ('21), Zachary Yedidia ('21), and me.)

Squash Courts in the Athletic Complex
The Athletic Complex at Harvard is located across the Charles River from Harvard Yard and upper-level dorms. There are a variety of athletic facilities that are available to students during certain hours, and students can reserve them ahead of time. I liked to go to the Murr Center with my friends to play squash! There are also smaller squash courts in the basements of Lowell House and Dunster House, which are two other upper-level Houses.

Two students playing squash

Squash Courts at the Murr Center

My friends and I liked to play squash at the Murr Center! (Left to right: Stephen Freeman ('21), Rowen VonPlagenhoef ('21))

Smith Campus Center
The upper floors of Smith Campus Center have a number of great study spaces with lots of sunlight coming through the large glass windows! There are also specific rooms that you can reserve for student activities, so my choir sometimes hosted some socials in one of the rooms on the 10th floor. In non-pandemic times, the lower floors of Smith Campus Center are open to the public, and there are also many study spaces, coffee shops and takeout food places --- and even an outdoor seating area for nice days!

Cityscape of Cambridge

View from the Smith Campus Center

The view from the Smith Campus Center is also very pretty! You can see Harvard Square from the windows.

Zinneken's (Not on campus but walking distance!)
Zinneken's is a Belgian waffle place right across from Harvard Yard. Seating is limited (and not available during the pandemic), but you can order takeout and eat it wherever you want! Their waffles are just so good, and it was a guilty pleasure for me and my friends. My favorite is their "Strawberry Glamour," which is a waffle topped with strawberries and chocolate!

5 students each with a waffle

Eating waffles!

My friends and I went to Zinneken's for Brunch before the Harvard-Yale Football Game! (From left to right: Eva Cai ('21), Link (Yale '21), Sophia Li ('21), Hilina Woldemichael ('21), and me.)

All of these places hold so many happy memories for me, so I hope you get to experience these wonderful places too!

Risa Komatsu Class of '21

Hi everyone! My name is Risa, and I am a senior studying Neuroscience with a secondary in Psychology.

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Risa Komatsu