First opened in 2004 in a former office building in the Central Business District, the Loews New Orleans Hotel completed a $4 million renovation in November 2014. The new look is modern, but with a nod to the Big Easy: rooms and suites (which, by the way, are among the most spacious in town) are done up in soothing blues and grays, and feature local photography on the walls, and the carpets have a wrought-iron fence motif. Large picture windows afford vistas of the city or the Mississippi River.
Run by the legendary Brennan family and named after the vivacious Adelaide Brennan, the hotel restaurant also got a makeover—think canary-yellow seats, teal tufted banquettes, and Andy Warhol–esque pop art of its namesake.
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Though technically in the Central Business District, the hotel is on the edge of the Arts District, and it’s worth venturing over that way (rather than toward the French Quarter) for a less touristy experience. Check out the art galleries that line Julia Street and the Ogden Museum of Southern Art. All of Donald Link’s restaurants are excellent, but his newest fish-centric restaurant, Peche, is especially noteworthy. Get your po’ boy fix just across the street from the hotel at Mother’s and go for a sazerac at the Sazerac Bar at the Roosevelt Hotel.
Need to Know
Rooms: 273 rooms, 12 suites. From $199. Check-in: 4 p.m.; check-out: noon. Dining options: Café Adelaide & the Swizzle Stick Bar is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The all-day spot serves modern, often playful riffs on Creole fare, like shrimp-and-tasso “corndogs,” New Orleans "East" style BBQ shrimp, and black-skillet seared redfish. Spa and gym details: In addition to a fitness center, heated lap pool, whirlpool, and sauna, the Balance Spa has four treatment rooms with a full array of offerings, including facials, massages, manicures and pedicures, and salon services.
Who's it for: Its CBD location and amenities like free Wi-Fi make the hotel ideal for discerning business travelers, but the hotel is equally suited for vacationers wanting to get a taste of New Orleans without full French Quarter immersion. Our favorite rooms: At 532 square feet, the Grand King rooms lay claim to being the largest rooms in the city. In-house tipple: Chef Lu Brow, aka the Queen of New Orleans Cocktails, recently added “Sparkle Plenty” (a favorite expression of Adelaide) to the cocktail lineup, and it’s a keeper—Cathead honeysuckle vodka, Lillet Blonde, Creole Shrubb orange liqueur, citrus, gold dust bitters, and sparkling wine.