Totally Boise Blog


Boise's Evolving Landscape: Farewells, New Beginnings, and Community Spirit

Last updated December 27, 2023 by Totally Boise

From the closing of Gino’s Italian Ristorante, a community favorite for 27 years, to the innovative designs in housing and urban green spaces, Boise is a city of constant evolution and heartwarming tales. Let’s take a look at the quirky new flowerpot-shaped Airbnb, the revival of Moon’s Kitchen Cafe in a new location, and how the city's first responders are lighting up the holiday season for kids at St. Luke's.

One Last Chance to Eat at Gino’s Italian Ristorante

Following a remarkable 27-year run, a cherished Treasure Valley eatery is set to shut its doors permanently at February's end.

Gino's Italian Ristorante, established by Gino and Tia Vuolo, has been a beloved staple in the community ever since the duo launched it in downtown Boise. In 2009, the family relocated the restaurant to Meridian. Foodies can enjoy their last few meals at this iconic spot during the holiday season, as it will be open without reservations on Dec. 22-23 and Dec. 27-30 from 4:00-9:30 p.m.

Flowerpot-Shaped Airbnb Opens in Idaho

Whitney Hansen and her mother won Airbnb's "OMG! Fund" contest last year with their unique concept.

Their award-winning design was a home resembling an enormous flower pot, located on Hansen's mother's quaint flower farm just outside Burley, en route to Oakley. The farm was a recent venture, started by her mother in the summer. This distinctive building stands 24 feet high, offering a genuine two-story living experience. Spanning 436 square feet, the interior welcomes guests with its high, outwardly tapering walls. It features a pullout couch that comfortably accommodates a couple, a kitchenette suitable for preparing small meals, and a refrigerator. On the same level, there's a bathroom that Hansen proudly refers to as “dreamy,” complete with a spacious walk-in rainfall shower.

Moon’s Kitchen Cafe to Reopen in New Location

Moon’s Kitchen Cafe is gearing up for a Jan. 1 reopening, contingent on passing all necessary inspections, at its new venue situated on the second floor of the Zions Bank building at 800 W Main St. in downtown Boise. This new spot is conveniently located just around the corner from its former address at 712 W Idaho St.

The cafe had to shut down on Nov. 9 following the condemnation of its previous site in the historic Union Block Building by the city of Boise. The closure was due to the building failing a structural inspection, as stated by the city. This issue also temporarily impacted Mai Thai, which had to close its doors as well.

First Responders Shine Lights for Kids at St. Luke's in Boise

A group of Treasure Valley first responders convened at St. Luke's Children's Hospital in Boise one Thursday evening to brighten the holiday season for the patients with a special display of lights.

Seeking to bring joy and brightness to the festive season, Boise Police, Boise Fire, Meridian Police, Meridian Fire, the Ada County Sheriff's Office, among others, lit up their emergency vehicles, including firetrucks and police cars. This luminous spectacle was orchestrated as a unique treat for the children in the hospital, infusing a sense of festive celebration just before Christmas.

A New Kind of Park is Coming to Boise

The city of Boise is transforming a narrow strip of land in west Boise into an innovative park that combines green space with a habitat for pollinators.

This slender three-acre parcel, generously donated and adjacent to Capitol High School, is set to become a connecting pathway between Hyatt Hidden Lakes Reserve and Spaulding Ranch. However, the project's ambition extends beyond just creating a walkway. Its design aims to preserve Boise's open spaces, support pollinator populations, and incorporate native plants for water conservation, all while offering a venue for public art.

Embracing Change and Community

It's evident that this city is a vibrant hub of activity, innovation, and community spirit. From the end of an era with the closure of Gino’s Italian Ristorante to the exciting beginnings of unique accommodations and urban parks, Boise continues to showcase its dynamic and compassionate character. The city not only embraces change but also cherishes its traditions and community values, as seen in the heartwarming efforts of its first responders. Boise's story is one of continuous growth and communal warmth, making it a truly special place to be.

If you love learning about all things Boise, we’ve done the research for you! Check out our blog to find local stories and insider tips for exploring Boise.

Catch Up On This Week in Boise


  1. Treasure Valley restaurant to close after 27 years, patrons will have one last chance to dine
  2. Flowerpot Airbnb opens for business just outside of Burley
  3. Moon's Kitchen moves to new location in Boise | Local News |
  4. First responders to shine lights for kids at St. Luke's in Boise
  5. A new kind of park will be coming to Boise




Memories are made in Boise.
Don’t forget to share yours with us.



Stay in the know about all things Boise.

Copyright 2023 by Totally Boise | Privacy Statement | Terms of Use