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Loft 523
Loft 523
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Opened in April 2001, this Central Business District property, a converted dry-goods warehouse, is a departure from the typical New Orleans hotel. Instead of fleur-de-lis wallpaper and Louis XIV chairs, you’ll find Fortuny lamps, Herman Miller desk chairs, and Agape “Spoon” tubs in the palatial bathrooms. The 18 lofts, with their white walls, concrete floors, and modern furnishings, feel straight out of the pages of Dwell.

The hotel doesn’t have the amenities of a larger hotel; the lobby is meant for checking in, not hanging out, and there’s no restaurant or bar to prop up, but guests have privileges at the sister hotel, International House. And, most significantly, the fact that there are just 18 rooms means that from the minute you check in, the front desk team knows you. 
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Neighborhood Vibe
The Central Business District (CBD) is a quiet but proximal respite from the French Quarter. In the neighborhood, stop by Loa at the International House for one of “spirit handler” Alan Water’s creative concoctions, like the Marlene (pronounced like the movie star), which melds housemade Mississippi Blueberry & Blackberry Liqueur with Iris Root Liqueur, Combier Kümmel, and Bittermen's "Hellfire" Bitters. John Besh’s Luke has an oyster happy hour (50 cents a bivalve) that’s worth checking out and also an excellent burger. If you want to get fancied up for the night, Besh’s more formal August is the place to do so. On the other end of the spectrum, there’s Mother’s, known for its debris po’boy. Wear whatever and be prepared to wait in line during peak hours. 
Need to Know
Rooms: 17 rooms, 1 suite. From $179.
Check-in: 4 p.m.; check-out: noon.
Dining options: There’s no on-site restaurant, but you can order room service (John Besh’s Luke is a popular choice) if you feel like staying in.
Spa and gym details: There’s no gym, but guests can use the one at International House, which has spin bikes, elliptical and rowing machines, and a punching bag. 
Insider Tips
Who's it for: Design geeks and creative types will feel right at home in the hotel’s cutting-edge crash pads.
Our favorite rooms: The top-floor Penthouse One has a private outdoor space with views of the city.
Good to know: Take advantage of the knowledgeable staff, who can point you in the direction of off-the-beaten path destinations like Bacchanal, a restaurant and outdoor wine bar, or Mariza, a cool Italian spot in the Rice Mill Lofts, both in the Bywater. 
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