There is something left in this people here that makes them like one another, that leads to constant outbursts of the spirit of play, that keeps them from being too confoundedly serious about death and the ballot and reform and other less important things in life.
Staying Safe -- There is, of course, considerable concern about personal safety in New Orleans. Your hotel choice, for the most part, need not be influenced by that. Daytime is mostly safe, and at night you will probably be traveling in cabs or, if you're in the French Quarter, in well-populated areas. If you stay above Bourbon Street, closer to Rampart, don't walk back to your hotel alone at night; take a cab or travel in a group.
French Quarter & Faubourg Tremé
Called the Vieux Carré (old square), this picturesque soul of the city that most people envision, the views that enable visitors to walk out of their hotels and feel wholly transported to the late 17th and early 18th centuries, when Quarter was built. In the French Quarter, you are ensconced in the total N.O. experience—from the serene to the sybaritic. The Tremé (just across Rampart Street) has a few lodging options, offering proximity at a lower price point.
Best for: First-time visitors; short-term visitors; historians; architecture buffs; partiers; everyone.
Drawbacks: During high season it can be bustling with tourists and goings-on. It's genrally pricier than other areas, and valet parking can add to the wallop.
Marigny & Bywater
A few inns and a slew of B&Bs (many newly minted) dot this gentrified-meets-working-class area. Artists’ workshops, galleries, dive bars and a fresh crop of darn good restaurants are scattered throughout the area.
Best for: Artists and art appreciators; bohemians and alternative scenesters; B&B fans; people seeking a less-bustling, neighborhood experience; who prefer staying among the like-minded; LGBTQ; music lovers who want to fall out of bed and onto Frenchmen Street.
Drawbacks: Some parts are walking distance to the French Quarter; others are too far from the action or from public transportation, warranting a car or bike. Expect dicey, rundown shotgun homes commingling with cool renovations.
This thriving area encompasses diverse socioeconomies and architectural styles amid quiet neighborhood streets and busy commercial corridors. It includes a number of B&Bs along sometimes grand, sometimes, shabby Esplanade Avenue.
Best for: Repeat visitors seeking to experience the city more like a resident; those who prefer B&Bs; Jazz Fest and Voodoo Experience goers; bike riders.
Drawbacks: You’ll rely on a car, bikes, taxis, or public transportation. It’s a large area with some altogether lovely sections; others not at all.
Central Business District
The “CBD” abuts the French Quarter along Canal Street and extends west to include the Warehouse District, with loft-conversion hotels, a thriving club scene, and the arts district. As the city’s commerce center, modernity and history mix—as do tourists and businesspeople. Some of the city’s finest restaurants and hotels are here, as are some good deals (especially on weekends and off-season). Most of it is still walking distance to the French Quarter action.
Best for: Hipsters; foodies; conventioneers; Superdome attendees; museum-goers; the budget-minded; families (lots of suite and chain hotels are here).
Drawbacks: It’s not New York, but this is a city center, with people working and view-obstructing office buildings (and non-stop construction—ask what's nearby when kaing reservations). Pricey parking; do without a car or save a few bucks and minutes by using a nearby private lot rather than the valet).
Inexpensive hotels: Nada. Some of our recommended moderate to higher-priced CBD hotels run super specials, especially over summer; and the many chains here might work if convention business is slow that week. But there aren’t any year-round inexpensive options in this area that we’d guide you toward, dear reader. Just being honest.
Uptown/The Garden District
The residential Garden District offers iconic Old South charm, complete with moss-laden greenery and palatial, columned homes. Not all of Uptown is as grandiose as the name might suggest—there are many more modest, no less charming properties—but the best sections are both spacious and gracious.
Best for: Repeat visitors; romantics; history buffs; claustrophobes; garden lovers; lollers-about; style-seeking shoppers (for nearby Magazine Street).
Drawbacks: Allow extra time and expense to get around—you’re not in the thick of the action or the city’s top attractions. You’ll likely be near public transportation, but may prefer a car or bike.
Not Your Mother’s Room & Board
Wherever you stay in New Orleans, good food is close by. But if that’s just not close enough—if you’re one of those who selects your accommodations based on its culinary offerings—here are a few hotels with outstanding restaurants:
* Café Adelaide in Loew’s New Orleans (CBD)
* Compère Lapin in Old No. 77 Hotel & Chandlery (CBD)
* Domenica in the Roosevelt Hotel (CBD)
* The Grill Room in the Windsor Court (CBD)
* Josephine Estelle in the Ace House (FQ)
* Latitude 29 in the Bienville House (FQ)
* Lüke in the Hilton St. Charles (CBD)
* MiLa in the Renaissance Pere Marquette (CBD)
* Restaurant R’evolution in the Royal Sonesta (FQ)
* The Rib Room in the Omni (FQ)
* Vacherie in the Hotel St. Marie (FQ)
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.