Think of them as the Untouchables: Bogus Basin, The Flicks, Hannifin's and Record Exchange have all reigned supreme in their respective categories for so long that we've decided to give them Lifetime Achievement Awards.
The people who opened Bogus Basin ski hill more than 75 years ago reportedly had a dream of making the mountain resort a year-round attraction with summertime amenities. True, it took decades to make that dream a reality, but the wait was definitely worth it. And when the snow flies once more later this year, Bogus will lay claim once again to the title of Boise's favorite mountaintop ski resort. Bogus Basin remains the best spot of its kind, and it gets to carry the Best Local Ski Resort crown down slope for good.
Imagine if some local entrepreneurs opened a cinema in the heart of downtown Boise. They still wouldn't have a ghost of a chance at beating out The Flicks as Best Movie Theater. We adore everything about The Flicks: its selection of essential films, its wide variety of beer and wine options and those the homemade dishes cooked daily in its tiny cafe. Most of all, we adore Carole Skinner and her team of employees and volunteers who embrace the magic of movies.
For more than a century, people have streamed through the doors of Hannifin's, Boise's best smoke shop. True, the number of tobacco users has ebbed and flowed, but Hannifin's still rises above all the smoke of social shifts. The shop itself is a valued piece of Boise memorabilia, what with the pot-bellied stove in the back corner sitting on the same floorboards first laid down in 1908. Hannifin's will always rule the now-retired Best Local Smoke Shop category.
When the Record Exchange opened its doors in the mid-1970s, giant record shops owned by international conglomerates were all the rage. On more than a few occasions, naysayers tried to write the obituaries of locally owned record shops. But the Record Exchange, in all of its brightly colored glory, has not only survived but flourished as musical tastes and formats continue to change. Record Exchange has taken the category of Best Local Record Store off the Best of Boise (turn)table for good.