“Throw Me Something, Monsta!”: Krewe of Boo

Image courtesy of Krewe of Boo on Facebook

Krewe of Boo kicks off the holiday and parade season on Saturday, October 21, 2023, with its annual Halloween parade. This lively affair has become the “official Halloween Parade” in New Orleans in 2007, and has been going strong since, only growing in popularity. Krewe of Boo is brought to you by Kern Studios and the late “Mr. Mardi Gras” himself.

With Krewe of Boo, expect the usual 3-D fiberglass and papier-mache extravaganza with all of your favorite spooky characters. This popular parade draws both locals and visitors but is not so crowded that you won’t be able to get close at any point on its route. The parade-goers had been known to don their favorite, family-friendly Halloween gear as well, and you’re encouraged to do the same.

Krewe of Boo is very child-friendly, we can’t stress that enough. Everyone is welcome to join the spooky festivities, which makes this parade one of the best and most family-friendly ways to celebrate Halloween in one of the most haunted cities in America. You’ll see werewolves, ghosts, vampires, and other Halloween-themed monsters, but all the monsters on the floats are PG-13 and not too scary even for the youngest parade-goers.

There are plenty of plush toy throws for the little ones too. In an ongoing effort to minimize waste, Krewe of Boo has been instead handing out eco-friendly cups and food items made by local companies that are sponsoring the event.

Look out for Aunt Sally’s pralinettes and Chee Wees from Elmer’s Fine Foods. The little coffee packs from PJ’s Coffee are also a mainstay. Also look out for other collectibles and consumables like candy, light-up medallion beads and doubloons.

Once again, the pre-parade fun starts early in the morning and lasts all day. First up is the New Orleans Zombie Run. This two-mile race starts at 9 a.m. and ends at noon, both at Lucy’s Retired Surfers Bar & Restaurant (701 Tchoupitoulas St.) in the Warehouse District. Participants are encouraged to come dressed as zombies and monsters. Registration for the race begins at 7:30 a.m. You can also pre-register online.

The parade will begin at 6:30 p.m. on Decatur St. and Elysian Fields Ave. in the Marigny, rolling through the French Quarter. It will first go down Elysian Fields to N. Peters St., then to Decatur, passing by Jackson Square. Then the parade will go down Canal, up to Burgundy St., making a U-turn and eventually reaching Tchoupitoulas St.

You can watch the parade at the official viewing party on the balcony of Crescent City Brewhouse (527 Decatur St.) in the French Quarter, but you might want to get your tickets soon as they will most likely sell out (tickets include an open bar and balcony access).

The parade ends at Generations Hall (311 Andrew Higgins Dr.) in the Warehouse District for the Monster Mash party. This ticketed costume party starts at 8 p.m. (until).; ages 18 and up to enter. The Monster Mash features live music, a costume contest, drink specials, and a big dance party. You can buy tickets online or at the door.

The day before the parade, on Friday, October 20, 2023, there’s a slew of scheduled events to kick off the fun, including a luncheon, a second line to Pat O’Brien’s (718 St. Peter St.) in the French Quarter, and a happy hour there.

For more information and updates please visit the Krewe of Boo websiteFacebook page, or find them on Twitter and Instagram.

Need somewhere to stay while you enjoy all the fall fun New Orleans has to offer, including the always-fabulous Halloween celebrations? Book a stay at a historic French Quarter boutique hotel today!

Fall in New Orleans Highlights

Celebration in the Oaks in the New Orleans City Park

When the summer lull is over and the temps are milder, the city gets ready to ramp it up with Halloween and a calendar full of foodie-haven and music festivals. There’s a festival, sometimes two, going on every weekend! Here are the fall highlights of what’s happening in New Orleans.

The Labor Day weekend kicks into high gear with Southern Decadence, which celebrates LGBTQIA+ culture and attracts participants from all over the world.

September continues with the New Orleans Burlesque Festival, which brings together the best of local talent and some big international names who compete for the title of “Queen of Burlesque.” Adding to the year-round roster of music and food-centric festivals, Beignet Festival celebrates both sweet and savory renditions of the beloved pastry.

Do you like fried chicken? How about beer? The National Fried Chicken Festival at the Woldenberg Riverfront Park keeps getting bigger, drawing well-known fried chicken vendors coming from all over the region to represent different cooking styles of this classic Southern dish.

Don’t forget, New Orleans throws its own lavish version of Oktoberfest over the three weekends in October at Deutsches Haus in Mid-City. October continues with Tremé Fall Festival brings entertainment from New Orleans musical royalty and food trucks and vendors from some of New Orleans’ best eateries in one the nation’s first African American neighborhoods during the first weekend of October, and the Mac n’ Cheese Fest at the Louis Armstrong Park needs no introduction.

October fun continues with the massive New Orleans Film Festival and the Crescent City Blues and BBQ Festival. Halloween kicks into high gear with the kid-friendly Krewe of Boo, courtesy of Kern Studios.

November gives us the popular Oak Street Po-Boy Festival. Don’t miss Thanksgiving at the Fair Grounds Race Course! Per a long-standing New Orleans tradition, it’s customary to turn out at the track on Thanksgiving Day to watch the opening-day races while sporting fabulous hats. The racetrack also serves a sumptuous holiday buffet, plus a fancy dinner with all the holiday trimmings at the Clubhouse.

Every Thanksgiving weekend, the Bayou Classic draws the fans and alumni of Southern University and Grambling State University to New Orleans to partake in one of the country’s greatest college sports rivalries. This involves a fan fest, a parade, and the always-amazing Battle of the Bands before the big game at the Superdome.

Finally, November kicks off the beloved New Orleans tradition of Celebration in the Oaks, a dazzling holiday lights festival scattered throughout the 25 acres of the City Park, including the Botanical Garden, Storyland, and Carousel Gardens Amusement Park. This is how you know the winter holidays are upon us!

New Orleans offers tons of fun festivals and events for people of all ages and interests, appealing to both locals and tourists alike. If you are visiting the Big Easy in the fall, be sure to book your stay at The French Market Inn, a charming historic hotel in the New Orleans French Quarter located close to all of the festivals and excitement.

Get the Most Out of French Quarter Fest

Big Chief Juan Pardo and the Golden Comanches. Photo by Justen Williams

For four days (April 13-16, 2023), a big chunk of the French Quarter — also known as the Vieux Carré, French for the “old square” (or “old quarter”) — will be transformed into a series of festival stages, each showcasing a different brand of music either rooted in, or heavily influenced by, the sounds of Louisiana.

Getting around the Quarter when there’s not an enormous music festival can be daunting. Getting around when there’s a band on, seemingly, every corner, is kind of intimidating. Here’s our guide to getting the best out of French Quarter Fest — a map, if you will, to the musical treasures of the weekend.

Woldenberg Riverfront Park

Most of the FQ Fest’s main stages are concentrated along the waterfront of the Mississippi River in the French Quarter. The 2019 festival also added a new stage, the Pan-American Life Insurance Group Stage, on the riverfront moonwalk, right across from Jackson Square.

There you’ll see the steps that lead down to the water, marking the spot where, every Mardi Gras, the Society of St. Anne enters the waters to bid farewell to something from the previous year and pay tribute to the departed loved ones. The Riverfront will also participate again in the “world’s largest jazz brunch” — one of the festival’s signature events.

Need a tropical drink to beat the heat? While we’re not a city immediately known for tiki drinks, one of the finest tiki bars in the South is located just nearby: Beachbum Berry’s Latitude 29.

The French Market & The Mint

The other side of Jackson Square is also a nexus of music stages and, importantly, food! Dozens of this city’s best vendors will be at the New Orleans Jazz Museum located in the Old U.S. Mint building at the corner of Decatur Street and Esplanade Avenue. The Mint, incidentally, will have indoor music along with lectures and other special events, which makes it a good spot for cooling off should the days get too hot.

The French Market features FQ Fest’s International Stage. Check it out to get a taste of music from around the world. If you’re in need of a bite to eat and want to try a classic Cajun diner, you can’t go wrong with Coop’s Place. If you want some liquid refreshments, Molly’s at the Market is one of our favorite neighborhood bars in the city.

Royal Street

Usually, Royal Street is an unbroken string of serious antique shops and art galleries. During French Quarter Fest, expect that scene to get livened up by several smaller music stages.

Decatur Street

Notable for the Bienville Statue, Decatur Street is where you’ll find Cajun and Zydeco music playing all weekend long. This is some of our favorite dance music anywhere.

Jackson Square

The “town square” of New Orleans, as it were, Jackson Square is a geographic lynchpin for the entirety of the French Quarter, so expect it to be filled with food vendor booths for the duration of the fest, and as vibrant as ever. It will also be the location of many of the French Quarter Festival’s special events, including the opening-day second line and the St. Louis Cathedral annual spring concert.

Bourbon Street

Bourbon Street has a reputation as a hard-partying locus of bachelor parties and wild weekend trippers, but during French Quarter Fest it showcases no less than four smaller musical stages, including the lovely Jazz Playhouse at the Royal Sonesta. The festival will also kick off with a parade on the 100 block of Bourbon St.

So, what’s the history of the French Quarter?

Glad you asked!

They don’t call this neighborhood the “old square” for nothing. The French Quarter was the original city of New Orleans, founded in 1718 by Jean-Baptiste Le Moyne de Bienville. Rampart Street is named as such because it once marked the actual city walls (or ramparts) of New Orleans. The city centered on the Place d’Armes, now known as Jackson Square, was originally built as a military parade ground where criminals were hanged in public.

The name “French Quarter” is a bit of a misnomer; New Orleans was under Spanish rule from 1762-1802, and it was during this period that two huge fires (in 1788 and 1794) seared away much of the original architectural façade of the Quarter.

Thus, the buildings you see today retain more of a Spanish than French sensibility, as evidenced by wraparound balconies (which create a shady, breezy median space between the street and private residences — a useful architectural trick in hot, pre-AC New Orleans) and lush courtyards painted in bright colors, which form a reflective patina that wards off the sun.

The best example of actual French colonial architecture in the Quarter is the Old Ursuline Convent, which is also the oldest building in the Mississippi River Valley (built in 1752). With that said, the streets of the French Quarter are largely named in honor of French nobility — Burgundy, Chartres and, yes, Bourbon.

If the French Quarter marks the original layout of New Orleans, then the original inhabitants were the Creoles, people of French, Spanish, and eventually mixed French and Spanish descent. That phenomenon is eloquently realized when one considers the names of two of the main buildings on Jackson Square: the (Spanish-origin) Cabildo and (French-origin) Presbytère. It is also worth noting that St. Louis Cathedral, which dominates Jackson Square, is the oldest continuously operating cathedral in the USA, and a fine example of French Colonial architecture in its own right.

Although the Creoles called the French Quarter home for many decades, they began moving out as the area became more depressed and ramshackle, especially in the early 20th century. That was when city officials shut down the vice in the red-light district of Storyville.

In response, the purveyors of sin crossed Rampart Street into the Quarter, and the Creoles moved out, to be gradually replaced by Italian immigrants. Later, also came the bohemians, attracted by the area’s undeniable architectural charms, as well as the members of the LGBTQIA+ community seeking tolerance.

In 1965, the Vieux Carré Historic District was established, allowing for the preservation of the Quarter’s historic character. The 1984 World’s Fair turned the Quarter into a bustling tourism destination, which is around the same time that many residents began leaving the neighborhood.

The Quarter tends to weather hurricanes and storms pretty well. Power lines are built underground, and the neighborhood itself was built on “high ground” (well, a few feet of elevation, but that’s enough) — which keeps it immune from flooding.

Today, while the Quarter is largely an area for tourists, thousands of residents still call it home.

Coming to the French Quarter Fest this spring? Take advantage of the French Market Inn specials, group rates, and best-rate guarantee for greater savings to spend on New Orleans famous French Quarter cuisine and enjoying everything this magnificent city has to offer. Reserve your room today!

Spring Festivals in New Orleans

New Orleans Food and Wine Experience. Photo by Tyler Kaufman

Every new season in New Orleans brings something special, and every spring we’re looking forward to festival fun. With the city’s festival season in full bloom, there’s something going on pretty much every week/end during spring’s official rein. Here is a rundown of the annual events happening in New Orleans between March and June.

March

Unwind with a cold beverage on any given Wednesday at the Square, a free concert music series held in the spring in Lafayette Park (located one block off of Poydras Street, between St. Charles Avenue and Camp Street) every Wednesday evening, in the heart of the Central Business District. From March through May, these outdoor concerts feature a variety of jazz, rock, swam pop, brass, Latin rhythms, and more. Bring a chair or a blanket, or dance by the stage, and dogs and kids are welcome.

No March in New Orleans is complete without mentioning the festivities surrounding St. Patrick’s Day. It often comes as a surprise to first-time visitors to New Orleans that this city has a deep Irish heritage, which traces back to its history as a Catholic port of call that was one of the main entry points for the USA. There’s an entire neighborhood in this town called the Irish Channel, plus a plethora of fantastic pubs.

The weekend closest to St. Patrick’s Day (or the actual day of, if it falls on the weekend) turns emerald green thanks to two parades and numerous block parties across the city. The massive Irish Channel Parade Uptown has float riders passing cabbages to the screaming crowds; and the Downtown Irish Club Parade rolls from the Bywater to the French Quarter, making several pit stops on its way to Bourbon Street.

The annual gathering of the Mardi Gras Indian tribes, called Super Sunday, is perhaps the most open means of accessing this unique element of New Orleans backstreet culture. If you are lucky, you might see the Indians out and about on St. Joseph’s Day, and the tribes will be out in larger numbers on Super Sunday, which, weather permitting, typically falls on the third Sunday of March.

You can catch the gathering and the procession either at the A.L. Davis Park, at the corner of Washington and LaSalle streets; or in Bayou St. John in Mid-City, at the intersection of Orleans and Moss streets, on the bayou’s banks and the Orleans Street bridge.

Next up is the New Orleans Book Festival, held at Tulane University and featuring readings, panel discussions, keynote speeches, and so on. Then, on the last weekend of March, the five-day Tennessee Williams Literary Festival celebrates this city’s love affair with the written word, as well as writers’ love affair with New Orleans.

The festival pays homage to the brilliant Tennessee Williams with conferences, a book fair, walking tours, and the “Stella” and “Stanley” contest, which involves folks screaming out the iconic scene from A Streetcar Named Desire to appreciative crowds on Jackson Square.

Following this fest, the city also hosts the Saints & Sinners Literary Festival which celebrates LGBTQIA+ authors.

March closes with two more festivals. Hogs for the Cause at the UNO Lakefront Arena is an annual celebration of whole hog roasts and local music (with some national acts in the lineup as well). The event brings awareness to pediatric brain cancer.

One of the most anticipated spring events in the massive lineup of the festival season in New Orleans, the Freret Street Festival stands out as the biggest neighborhood festival in the city. This free festival is usually held on the last Saturday in March on the stretch of Freret Street from Napoleon to Valmont. Expect dozens of vendors, a food court, and several music stages. Zeus Place, located on Freret St., had been a constant presence at the fest, offering pet adoptions.

April

Come Easter, the heavily Catholic city celebrates the end of Lent with three parades. The Historic French Quarter Easter Parade winds its way on Easter Sunday, before Easter Mass services begin, from Antoine’s Restaurant to St. Louis Cathedral in Jackson Square via classic convertible cars and mule-drawn carriages. When the parade arrives at the cathedral at 11 a.m., Easter Mass begins. Following services, folks prim and pose in Jackson Square, showing off their best Easter duds, before heading back to Antoine’s to break their Lent fasts like nobody’s business.

This procession is followed by the Chris Owens French Quarter Easter Parade, paying homage to the Crescent City’s own grande-dame diva of singing, dancing, and general fabulousness, the late Chris Owens, along with a small army of attendants, rolling from Canal and Bourbon streets to her nightclub and performance venue at 500 Bourbon St. The final parade of the day, also in the French Quarter, is the Gay Easter Parade, a long-standing tradition of the New Orleans LGBTQIA+ community.

Next up are the two heavy hitters on the city’s event calendar, the French Quarter Fest and Jazz Fest. The French Quarter Fest is the largest free musical event in the New Orleans calendar, and according to organizers, the largest free music festival in the USA. The setting is, as you may have guessed from the name, the French Quarter itself. The festival goes off in mid-April, which tends to come with gorgeous weather, and the lineup of musicians and food vendors is always fantastic.

The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, commonly known as Jazz Fest, is the preeminent music festival of a city that is pretty well known for its music festivals. Held on the New Orleans Fair Grounds race course in Mid-City, the event takes place on the last weekend of April and the first weekend of May, occupying the local weather sweet spot that links spring to summer. A dozen music stages and tents encompass genres and acts ranging from gospel to Cajun to rock and pop.

A major part of the appeal is the food tents, which feature a regular rotating sampling of some of the city’s finest cuisine. Even more than Mardi Gras, Jazz Fest has a crop of devoted repeat attendees; a sizable amount of visitors rent out homes on an annual basis for Fest, which has become something of a pilgrimage for a certain set of music aficionados. On the weekdays that link Jazz Fest’s official dates, random gigs constantly pop off around town.

The Whitney Zoo-To-Do evening fundraiser at the Audubon Zoo rounds up the event-heavy April.

May

The spring roster of festivities continues into May with the popular Bayou St. John three-day extravaganza on the bayou’s banks in Mid-City, Bayou Boogaloo; and the Greek Fest in Lakeview, complete with a toga contest and Greek staples like souvlaki and spanakopita. The Boogaloo has a smaller, more local feel than, say, the French Quarter Fest, and usually draws out an impressive flotilla of all kinds of vessels, from the expertly constructed, massive rafts to kayaks to giant inflatables, that park and party on the bayou for the duration of the festival (permit is required these days).

June

Despite the soaring temps the month of June is still going strong with festivals, including New Orleans Pride (there’s a parade, of course) and the French Market Creole Tomato Festival.

Traditionally held on the second weekend of June, the French Market Creole Tomato Festival welcomes the arrival of Creole tomatoes that Louisiana loves to incorporate into many local recipes. The French Market location and the food offerings make this a popular festival among locals and visitors alike.

The festival features live music, kids’ activities, a parade, and a second line. There are cooking demos in addition to an extensive menu of Creole tomatoes incorporated into gelato, crepes, crawfish pies — you name it.

The festival usually features a Bloody Mary market in Dutch Alley and a tomato-eating contest. There will be local restaurants and bars offering the Marys, the Marias, and other variations of the signature cocktail, competing for “Best of the Fest” awards in such categories as Most Creative Bloody Mary and Best Bloody Mary Garnish.

The annual New Orleans Wine & Food Experience (NOWFE) provides local and visiting epicureans and hobbyists an extended weekend of libations and culinary indulgence in a style that is uniquely New Orleans. NOWFE is designed to encourage participation in the full gamut of food and wine-centered experiences. The event offerings include package rates, activities, and dinners with something at nearly every price point with attire ranging from costumed to cocktail depending on the event and venue.

The Louisiana Cajun-Zydeco Festival, held at Armstrong Park, celebrates Cajun and Zydeco music with a stellar lineup of Louisiana acts, local food, an art market, and a whole lot of crawfish.

There you have it! Happy spring!

Visiting New Orleans this spring? Take advantage of the French Market Inn specials, group rates, and best-rate guarantee. Reserve your room today!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Where to Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in New Orleans

Photo by Johnny Cohen on Unsplash

Mardi Gras may be but a bead-sodden memory of a few days past, but are we stopping with the parades? Of course not. We never stop parading! (At least, sometimes it feels that way.)

As St. Patrick’s Day presents us with a slew of activities over the weekend, here are some of the best. And remember, there’s also going to be an always-impressive act — the annual gathering of the Mardi Gras Indian tribes on Super Sunday on March 19, 2023, by A.L. Davis Park (Washington and LaSalle streets).

The Irish Channel Parade

This is THE New Orleans Paddy’s Day parade. On Saturday, March 11, 2023, the parade will start at 1:30 p.m. on the corner of Napoleon Ave. and Tchoupitoulas St. Float riders typically toss all things green, including the edible kind (cabbage), and try to bestow kisses upon the spectators.

Block parties

On the same Saturday, there are two big parties kicking off mere blocks from each other at the border of the Lower Garden District and the Irish Channel. One blowout goes off at Tracey’s at 2604 Magazine St. (11 a.m. till), and the other at Parasol’s at Third and Constance streets (10 a.m. – 8 p.m.). Expect much green beer, green tutus, and green jello shots — you get the idea.

The annual Irish Channel block party will be held on Friday, March 17, 2023, starting at 1:00 p.m. This block party is located at Annunciation Square on the 1500 block of Chippewa. There will be Irish music, food, drinks, and dancers.

Downtown Irish Club Parade

If you prefer staying downriver on Paddy’s Day, the Downtown Irish Club Parade rolls from Piety and Burgundy in the Bywater into the French Quarter at 7 p.m. on St. Patrick’s Day, Friday, March 17, 2023.

Finn McCool’s Annual St. Patrick’s Day Party

Or head to Mid-City for Finn McCool’s always awesome St. Patrick’s Day block party. The fun starts at 10 a.m. and lasts into the night, with the Wee Parade, live music, and crawfish. There’s also Irish karaoke till about 1 a.m., which will either be terrible or grand and likely a bit of both. Trust us, it’s just as debauched as the other celebrations around town.

If you’re visiting New Orleans this spring, take advantage of the French Market Inn specials, group rates, and best-rate guarantee for greater savings to spend on New Orleans famous French Quarter cuisine and enjoying everything this magnificent city has to offer. Reserve your room today!

 

 

 

Things to Do in New Orleans in February

Mardi Gras comes relatively early this year (February 21, 2023), and there is a steady stream of events and entertainment leading up to it. February is not only packed with Carnival-related festivities though — let’s not forget Valentine’s Day — plus there are a few low-key local annual events you might enjoy. Here are some highlights and suggestions to make sure you make the most of this short but event-packed month.

Go See the Mardi Gras Parades

One of the best parties in the world is here! The Carnival season always kicks off on January 6, known as Twelfth Night or the Epiphany, with three parades, and will culminate as usual on Mardi Gras Day (Fat Tuesday). In the days leading up to it, dozens of parades roll in February in the French Quarter, Marigny, Bywater, and Uptown.

Do consider venturing outside the city too, if you can, as parts of the metro New Orleans, like Metairie, Covington, Slidell, and the West Bank have some of the most fascinating, fun parades of the Carnival season. You can’t catch them all, but you can try! Check the full parade schedule to get the rundown of the Carnival festivities that, depending on the Fat Tuesday date, can spill into March.

Eat King Cake

For those who aren’t aware, King Cake is a traditional cake typically served during Mardi Gras festivities. It’s socially acceptable to stuff your face with it anytime between January 6, when the Carnival season starts, and Ash Wednesday. Also, per tradition, whoever finds a plastic baby in their slice has to throw the next party, or at least buy the next King Cake.

King Cake comes with many fillings although the traditionalists insist on the old-school rendition without any. It also comes in the Carnival colors of purple, gold and green, but then again you might see the “Who Dat?” versions in black and gold during the football season, honoring the Saints.

King Cake has its own annual festival, and New Orleanians tend to have strong opinions about who makes the best King Cake in the city. One thing is for sure: Everywhere you go during Mardi Gras, from a grocery store to a parade party to a dive bar, King Cake will be there for the taking.

Take in the Art at First Saturdays

Head downtown to the Arts District to discover some of the city’s best galleries during this free event. First Saturday gallery openings are held every first Saturday of the month, down and around Julia Street, 6-9 PM. Member galleries open their doors and might be also serving free refreshments.

Celebrate Vietnamese New Year at Tet Fest

Tet Fest is held over a weekend at the Mary Queen of Vietnam Church at 14011 Dwyer Blvd. in New Orleans East. It’s a free celebration of the Vietnamese New Year with live music, traditional dance performances, fireworks, kid-friendly activities, and an amazing variety of authentic Vietnamese food. The date changes annually, falling anywhere between mid-January and late February.

Celebrate Valentine’s Day in One of the Most Romantic Cities

To be fair, this is a worldwide holiday. But Valentine’s Day (Feb. 14) in New Orleans — with her wrought-iron balconies, historical buildings, and the possibility of music on every corner — is a special kind of unique. Check out our suggestions on the romantic things to do in the French Quarter for some ideas.

Explore the French Quarter

Whether you’re here with your sweetheart to celebrate Valentine’s Day or visiting with family or friends (or alone) for any other reason, Carnival season is one of the best times to explore the French Quarter. The spirit of revelry permeates the streets, and there are parades and block parties to stumble upon. Not to mention that many of the French Quarter’s facades, porches and balconies are decked in dazzling decorations, sporting purple, green and gold.

Plus, the winter temps are usually mild here, and pleasant enough to stroll down Royal Street to visit the galleries and the antique shops, for example. You can also take in a brass band performance at Jackson Square; visit the French Market to get a po-boy and some oysters; or scarf down some beignets at Cafe du Monde. Take a tour, or just walk around and stare.

No matter when you visit and with whom, take advantage of the French Market Inn specials, group rates, and best-rate guarantee for greater savings to spend on New Orleans famous French Quarter cuisine and enjoying everything this magnificent city has to offer. Reserve your room today!

 

 

 

New Year’s Eve in New Orleans: What to Do and Where to Stay

It should come as no surprise that New Orleans does New Year’s Eve quite well. Both the city and the holiday are closely tied to the celebration, public revelry, and good fellowship. But many visitors may not expect how possible it is to have an intimate, (relatively) quiet New Year’s Eve in New Orleans. Of course, there are big celebrations within the French Quarter, but even in that storied neighborhood, a night out on December 31 can be both as raucous and as chill as you please.

Note that in New Orleans, the evening of the 31 is not a guaranteed chiller. While there have been New Year’s Eves in New Orleans characterized by heavy coats and cold winds off of the Mississippi, there is a chance the weather will be temperate, and even a little muggy. The point is: Bring cold-weather clothes but don’t be surprised if you won’t need them.

Here are some of our picks for what to do on New Year’s Eve in New Orleans.

Dick Clark Rockin’ New Year’s Eve 

Every year, Dick Clark Rockin’ New Year’s Eve production hosts its official Central Time Zone party in New Orleans near the historic Jax Brewery starting at 9 p.m. The show is coordinated with parties in New York and Los Angeles, and features a musical lineup and special guests. The fleur-de-lis drop at Jax Brewery is live-cast.

Jackson Square

This is the big, obvious New Year’s activity in New Orleans — our version of the Times Square ball drop (although the actual ball drop is a fleur-de-lis drop, and that event has a party all of its own, see above). Jackson Square is a historic and iconic meeting space of the city of New Orleans, and is always a linchpin for local events.

Every year, admission to the square is free, although you’ll want to show up early in the evening if you don’t want to be crowded to the edge of the square (depending on your crowd tolerance, the latter scenario may not be such a bad thing). Within Jackson Square, there are live music and general milling about. The end-of-the-year countdown culminates in the fleur-de-lis drop, followed by fireworks over the Mississippi.

For the Kids

If you’re traveling with young children and have made the reasonable conclusion that popping bottles of Moët at midnight and a child’s sleep cycle don’t mix well — but also don’t want your kids to completely miss New Year’s Eve fun — consider some of the family-friendly annual events in the Crescent City.

You could take your kids to Zoo Year’s Eve at the Audubon Zoo, which “parties” from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. with a soda toast, costumed characters, and of course, the Audubon’s wildlife menagerie (the event is included in the price of admission).

Or you could head to the Louisiana Children’s Museum for their annual New Year’s Eve Kids’ Countdown to Noon, which lasts from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. That party typically includes noisemakers, paper bag hats, and music, all set against the backdrop of the Louisiana Children’s Museum’s considerable range of kid-friendly displays and exhibits, appropriate for children aged from 1-12.

Balcony Bashes

If you’re looking for a more traditional night of French Quarter-style partying, be on the lookout for balcony bashes at area bars — located all up and down the (in)famous Bourbon Street nightlife strip.

A balcony bash is pretty much that — you’ll pay a cover and be allowed to plant yourself on a wrought-iron balcony overlooking the street below. Some bashes feature all-inclusive tickets that get you extras like an open bar and food. Either way, much bead tossing subsequently ensues.

With that said, a different take on the balcony bash is a French Quarter New Year’s Eve house party. Seeing as such houses usually have balconies that afford at least a decent view of the river, this is a good chance to see the fireworks while avoiding crowds. Of course, getting yourself into a house party is all based on your charm and who you know.

Allstate Sugar Bowl Parade

Need something to do during the day? Since 1935, the Sugar Bowl has been played in New Orleans, and while that event has since become the Allstate Sugar Bowl, the New Year’s Eve Parade associated with the game continues in more or less the same vein. The extravaganza is done Mardi Gras-style, so expect big floats, marching bands, plenty of throws (trinkets tossed to spectators), and a general overload of glitz and pageantry.

The parade begins at the “bottom” of the Quarter, where it meets Faubourg Marigny, at the intersection of Elysian Fields Avenue and Decatur Street, at 2 p.m. The parade proceeds into the French Quarter and rolls past some of that neighborhood’s most iconic landmarks, including the French Market and Jackson Square. At approximately 3 p.m. the parade passes the WDSU stage at the Allstate Fan Fest on Decatur Street inside the Jax Brewery parking lot, where all performers do a two-minute show. The parade ends at Canal St.

Riverboat Cruises

Want the best view of the fireworks? Local riverboats like Paddlewheeler Creole Queen and Steamboat Natchez offer an opportunity to ring in the new year with river cruises that include champagne toasts, live music, a dinner buffet, and party favors.

LGBTQIA+ Parties

The French Quarter includes some of the oldest gay bars in the country, and a slew of venues in the lower portions of Bourbon Street, starting at around the 800 block, will be throwing New Year’s Eve parties. Expect DJs, dancers (of the go-go variety), and drag cabaret. If that kind of thumping nightlife experience isn’t your thing, consider an evening at one of the city’s more laid-back bars, like Mag’s 940 (940 Elysian Fields Avenue), The Friendly Bar (2301 Chartres Street) and Big Daddy’s (2513 Royal Street) — all friendly spots that will certainly be celebrating, but perhaps minus the laser show and speakers.

Crescent Park

The Crescent Park is a public green space that has become a favorite spot for watching events take place on the river. Positioned as it is along the Mississippi, the park offers fantastic views of the water, which means you’ve got a clear vantage point onto the annual firework show. Usually, the park closes after dark, but on New Year’s Eve it will stay open to the public till 1 a.m. There are three entrances to the space in Bywater and Faubourg Marigny, and both of those neighborhoods are thick with venues to celebrate in after the last firework pops off.

Where to Sleep

We’ve given you plenty of options on how to spend New Year’s Eve in New Orleans, but let’s face it: Once the confetti has been thrown, the champagne uncorked and the noisemakers put away, you need a place to sleep (and possibly sleep in, depending on how much fun you’ve had). With that said, you want to pick the right hotel — one that has a mix of easy accessibility and cozy amenities.

If you’re celebrating near Jackson Square, consider a room at the Place d’Armes Hotel. Want to be near the action on Bourbon Street? Try Hotel St. Marie. Or position yourself near the river at the historic French Market Inn.

 

Top 10 Reasons to Stay at French Market Inn in the New Orleans French Quarter

The French Quarter is the crown jewel of New Orleans, steeped in history and bursting with attractions that draw hordes of visitors year-round. Finding the perfect place to stay is the first step of your journey, and the French Market Inn has everything you need to make your vacation truly memorable.

1. An Affordable Oasis in the Bustling Heart of the Quarter

French Market Inn offers a unique New Orleans feel that is both beautiful and authentic. Originally an 18th-century French Creole bakery, French Market Inn has a timeless ambiance that provides a lovely oasis from all the round-the-clock attractions just outside your door.

We’re also one of the Quarter’s best bargains. With special offers, weekday rates, and seasonal savings, you can always snag one of our lovely guest rooms for a great price.

Beautifully-appointed balcony rooms with street views overlooking the French Quarter are perfect for romantic getaways, while more petite guest rooms are just right for brief business trips. We also offer terrific group rates for large parties that occupy 10 or more guest rooms.

Planning a New Orleans destination wedding? French Market Inn rolls out the red carpet for guests who want to host their wedding party in a unique French Quarter hotel with a charming swimming pool in our central courtyard. We also offer valet parking, complimentary Wi-Fi, and a 24-hour concierge service that ensures you won’t miss a thing when you’re staying at French Market Inn!

2. Location, Location, Location

When you visit New Orleans, you don’t want to make a long trek to all the fabulous places you’ve read about. At French Market Inn, located on the historic waterfront strip of Decatur Street, most of the Quarter’s top attractions are just minutes away by foot.

In nearby Jackson Square, a bustling hub of New Orleans street artists and colorfully-garbed fortune-tellers ply their trades in front of the stately St. Louis Cathedral. Woldenberg Park, the site of many free festivals, is just across the way on the banks of the Mississippi. And you can easily stroll down Decatur to the famous Cafe du Monde and dip sugar-dusted beignets into chicory-laced coffee before browsing the colorful wares at the French Market.

Also close at hand: the adult playgrounds of Bourbon Street and Harrah’s Casino New Orleans, along with family-friendly attractions like the Audubon Aquarium of the Americas.

If walking around the Quarter isn’t quite your speed, you can opt for a pedicab, which is a fun way to navigate through the streets, or take a romantic mule-driven carriage ride. In a hurry? Taxis abound, and an Uber or Lyft is as close as the app on your phone.

3. You’re Surrounded by Live Music

New Orleans dances to the beat of live music all over town. But here in the Quarter, the music practically oozes out of the streets, from the crowd-pleasing cover bands on Bourbon Street to the solo sax player crooning on the corner.

Just steps from French Market Inn, you’ll find something for every musical taste and mood, whether you’re looking to rock out hard, dial it down for a romantic evening, or soak up New Orleans’ storied Dixieland musical past.

House of Blues presents great rock and blues acts touring acts and lets the good times roll New Orleans style, while The Bombay Club showcases some of the best jazz in town if not the country. And you don’t have to be Irish to enjoy hoisting a Guinness while enjoying the folksy live music at Kerry Irish Pub.

Looking for some razzle-dazzle? One Eyed Jack’s hosts everything from top touring bands to flashy burlesque shows, while the Fillmore New Orleans, inside Harrah’s Casino, presents national headliners.

For traditional New Orleans jazz, stroll down to Palm Court Jazz Cafe on the other end of Decatur, where some of the city’s greatest musical legends take the stage several nights a week. Then cross Esplanade to the live-music mecca of Frenchmen Street, which is lined with clubs and restaurants where the music starts early and continues through the wee hours.

4. Front Row Seat for French Quarter Fest

While you’ll find great music in the Quarter on any given day, you’ll be at the epicenter of the city’s live music universe in mid-April, when the French Quarter Festival rolls around, if you’re staying at French Market Inn.

The largest free musical event in the South, French Quarter Fest takes over the entire Quarter with over 20 stages of live music and has become the city’s biggest magnet for out-of-town visitors. A four-day celebration of music, culture and food, it features hundreds of musical acts in genres including traditional and contemporary jazz, rhythm and blues, Cajun and zydeco, New Orleans funk, classical, swing, rock, and international sounds from all over the globe.

Many of the Fest’s biggest acts play right across from French Market Inn at Woldenberg Park, and other smaller stages are a just stone’s throw away. Dozens of different food stalls help Fest-goers eat their way from one end of the Quarter to the other, feasting on spicy Creole and Cajun dishes before they burn up all those calories dancing to hot local bands.

The best part? When you need a break from all that action, you can pop over for a swim at French Market Inn, emerge refreshed, and hit the streets once again to let the good times roll!

5. Brimming With Festivals All Year Round

Spring is peak festival season in New Orleans. Right on the heels of Quarter Fest comes the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, the city’s other marquee music event, followed by Bayou Boogaloo, held along the picturesque banks of Bayou St. John.

But festivals are going on all year round, many of which are within walking distance or a just short cab or bike ride away from French Market Inn.

The Quarter rolls into summer with the French Market’s two-day Creole Tomato Festival, and the Louisiana Cajun-Zydeco Festival, all free and within easy walking distance. Ditto the spectacular dueling-barges fireworks display over the Mississippi River that marks Independence Day in New Orleans with Go 4th on the River and ESSENCE Fest.

July also brings Tales of the Cocktail, a lively six-day festival packed with tastings, seminars, and special events that includes spirited pub crawls; and the Running of the Bulls, where the Big Easy Rollergirls don horns and chase their human quarry through the Quarter while wielding plastic bats. (For more summertime fun, see “Great Place for a Summer Getaway,” reason #6).

Other Quarter-based festivals throughout the year include the Tennessee Williams Literary Festival, where March goes out like a lion with the raucous Stella & Stanley Shouting Contest. Krewe of Boo marks Halloween in the Quarter with a spooky kid-friendly float parade. And come Christmas, the Quarter decks itself for the holidays with caroling in Jackson SquareReveillon dinners, and the famous fleur-de-lis drop near Jax Brewery on New Year’s Eve.

Then, boom, it’s Carnival time! Mardi Gras season kicks off every year on January 6 with three Twelfth Night parades, including a lovely Krewe de Jeanne d’Arc procession on horseback and foot that winds its way through the Quarter.

And that’s just for openers. Whatever time of year you visit, there’s always something happening right outside the doors of the French Market Inn.

6. Great Place for a Summer Getaway

Summer used to be the sleepy season in New Orleans. Not anymore. The Quarter becomes a lively hive of activity in the dog days of summer when the temperatures go up and the rates go down at French Market Inn. And the best month of all to score great deals is August.

August kicks off its first weekend with two simultaneous festivals. Music lovers make a beeline for Satchmo SummerFest, held at the New Orleans Jazz Museum at the Old U.S. Mint, which celebrates the music and legend of Louis Armstrong, while see-and-be-scene art mavens don their best summer whites and throng to the Julia Street galleries on White Linen Night.

On the second Saturday of August, guys and gals alike hit the streets in their prettiest ruby frocks for the Red Dress Run, where they act silly and get giddy for good causes. Then they regroup for free libations at the Royal Street galleries during Dirty Linen Night, White Linen’s cheeky cousin.

Throughout August, foodies can graze on gourmet cuisine at the city’s top restaurants during COOLinary New Orleans. The prix fixe multiple-course dinner, brunch and lunch menus are very reasonable.

Come Labor Day weekend, it’s all hands on deck for the 24/7 Southern Decadence when anything and everything goes. This massive four-day festival celebrates LGBTQIA+ culture and attracts participants from all over the world. Most activities are centered in and around the Quarter and include two parades with fabulous costumes, many of them quite scanty.

7. Dreamy Romantic Getaway for Couples

New Orleans is one of the most romantic cities in the world. And you’ve got a head start on a dreamy vacation if you’re staying at French Market Inn, where brocade curtains frame the windows of charming rooms decorated in classic Quarter style.

While it may be tempting to ensconce yourselves amid the cushions on your comfy bed, a whole world of romance beckons from the streets just outside your door. The best part? You still have that lovely room to come back to when you’re ready to call it a night.

You know what they say about oysters, right? Jumpstart your romantic evening with a dozen or two freshly shucked oysters at the Bourbon House, just a short walk from the hotel, then stroll over to a candlelit dinner at Antoine’s or Arnaud’s. Both old-school Creole restaurants are housed in historic buildings in the heart of the Quarter and serve classic French dishes like Chateaubriand. More in the mood for nouveau cuisine? Head for Bayona, chef Susan Spicer’s flagship restaurant, which serves beautifully plated dishes in a lovely atmospheric setting.

After dinner, keep the magic going with a carriage ride through the Quarter. Book a ride in one of the many mule-drawn carriages parked in front of Jackson Square; they’re steered by savvy local drivers who can help you find the perfect romantic backdrop if you’re looking to pop the question or renew your vows.

Cap off your fairy tale date in one of the swanky curtained private booths at The Bombay Club, where you can sip Bombay’s signature martinis or other classic cocktails while listening to the cool jazz stylings of some of the city’s top artists. Then end your night on a high note in your lovely French Market Inn room, and pop that champagne you have chilling on ice.

8. Plenty of Family-Friendly Fun

New Orleans has its share of adult attractions, but it’s also one of the kid-friendliest cities in the country. You’ll find a wealth of G-rated fun in and around the Quarter near the French Market Inn.

Get to know the neighborhood with a teacher-led French Quarter Kids Tour. Younger kids can go ghost-hunting on the popular Spooky Tour, where mischievous spirits come out to play, while their bolder older siblings can take a chilling Twilight Tour or learn about old New Orleans on the Creole Kids Living History Tour. Families can also book customized private tours.

For a crash course in New Orleans jazz, take the whole family to one of the early shows at Preservation Hall, where master New Orleans musicians raise the roof for an all-ages audience. Come early to grab a good seat on the benches (though many kids prefer the floor). And be sure to feed your brood first; there’s no food or beverage service.

Jackson Square, just a hop, skip and a jump from French Market Inn, offers a passing parade of only-in-New-Orleans colorful characters. Directly across from the square, steps leading up to the Mississippi Riverwalk serve as an ad hoc stage for clowns, jugglers, acrobats, and other crowd-pleasing artists, whose free antics are sure to delight the kids for hours.

For a more structured family outing, visit the Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium, where kids can bug out with creepy crawlies, walk through a flutter of iridescent wings in the enchanting butterfly garden, get to know the locals at Boudreaux’s bait shop, and crunch down on some tasty bugs in the cafeteria.

That’s a full afternoon’s entertainment, so save the Audubon Aquarium of the Americas for another day. There, kids can watch penguins and sea otters at play, get up close and personal with magical jellyfish, and even reach out and touch a stingray (yikes!).

Between the free street performers and the fabulous ticketed entertainment, neither you nor the kids will ever be bored during your French Market Inn stay.

9. Near Iconic and Trendy Bars & Restaurants

The French Quarter is home to some of the best restaurants in the country, if not the world, beginning with the Creole grand dames: Arnaud’sAntoine’s, and Galatoire’s. You’ll also find casual eateries like the no-frills Coop’s Place, just down the street on Decatur, which offers excellent versions of local favorites like seafood gumbo and shrimp remoulade at affordable prices.

Like the city itself, Quarter restaurants continue to evolve, and Susan Spicer’s Bayona was just the first in a series of hotspots experimenting with the less classical fare. Some standouts include the aptly-named Jewel of the South.

Many of the world’s classic cocktails were invented in New Orleans. Napoleon House, just up the block from French Market Inn, first whipped up the Pimm’s Cup, a gin-based aperitif, in the 1940s. Like most iconic New Orleans drinks, it’s also widely available at other Quarter bars, and the best time to sample local spirits is at happy hour.

Home of the award-winning French 75, Arnaud’s French 75 serves discounted signature cocktails on Friday afternoon, paired with light bar fare like shrimp egg rolls. And Kingfish keeps it classic during daily happy hours when it offers iconic cocktails like the Sazerac, Vieux Carre, and Mint Julep with heartier bar food like gumbo.

Throughout your stay, you can eat and drink your way around the Quarter if you take judicious breaks at PJ’s Coffee, French Market Inn’s on-site caffeine purveyor. Grab a go-cup of joe and relax poolside to refresh yourself for the next round of indulgence.

10. Near Shopping Meccas Big & Small

When it comes to nearby shopping options, French Market Inn guests hit the jackpot. There are three major malls a stone’s throw away, and you don’t have to venture far to explore cool boutiques and souvenir shops full of New Orleans mementos.

The renovated Jax Brewery, a multi-story historic landmark packed with stores and restaurants, is only a block from French Market Inn. Across the street, you’ll find H&M, Urban Outfitters, Vans, and Sephora, all right next to one another. Hunting for discounts on major brands? Hit the Riverwalk outlet mall, which boasts the Mississippi River as its front yard.

Looking to live large? Walk down Canal toward the river to the Shops at Canal Place. The city’s premier retail emporium is home to luxury labels like Louis Vuitton, Tiffany & Co., Tory Burch, and Lulu Lemon as well as famed local jeweler Mignon Faget and exquisite artisanal handcrafts from the Louisiana Craft Guild.

Pick up unique, affordably priced local art and souvenirs at the French Market, or SecondLine Arts & Antiques on the Esplanade end of Decatur. For glam vintage-inspired clothing, shoes and accessories, hit Trashy Diva and Dollz & Dames.

Whatever your taste or price range, you’ll find something you covet near French Market Inn. Ready, set, shop!

Best Rate Guarantee

The French Market Inn, a historic New Orleans hotel, invites you to take advantage of super-discounted weekday rates. Receive even deeper discounts when you prepay in advance. If you find lower rates on your French Market Inn Hotel room(s) at the time of booking, we will match the rate.

We also invite you to take advantage of exclusive seasonal savings on our rooms. Check your available dates and book a true New Orleans experience online, or speak with one of our friendly reservation agents at (888) 626-2725. We’d love to have you, and we hope you have a great visit!

French Market Inn’s Ultimate Guide to the French Quarter

The French Market Inn is located on the bustling Decatur Street, in the center of the French Quarter of New Orleans and within six blocks of renowned New Orleans attractions like Jackson Square, the French Market, Aquarium of the Americas, Bourbon Street, and Harrah’s New Orleans Casino.

Not sure which room to choose? Or what to do around the hotel? Read on!

Choosing the perfect room at the French Market Inn

The historic French Market Inn is renowned for its meandering garden and stone-paved courtyard. Its antique brick facade opens onto a lobby adorned with period paintings, chandeliers, and columns. There are seven room types, with either a king or a queen bed, and we also have rooms with two queen beds.

The one-bedroom rooms are ideal for solo travelers, couples, or besties who don’t mind sharing a bed. The rooms with two queen beds are well suited for families, friend trips, girl trips, and any small groups that are OK with sharing a room.

Minimalists will love the petite room, it’s well-appointed and offers great value. If you treasure your privacy and are sensitive to noise, the windowless interior room also offers great value and all the peace and quiet you need.

Our beautiful deluxe room offers a little more space than the petite room, and a street or courtyard view (great for people-watching!). The balcony room features a balcony that faces the busy Decatur Street and is perfect for people who want the full French Quarter experience.

Getting around

The French Market Inn places you within walking distance of numerous New Orleans attractions, restaurants, art galleries, museums, and more. You will be able to browse through famous New Orleans art galleries and antique shops, grab a delicious beignet at Cafe Du Monde, and shop at the Riverwalk Mall and French Market in just minutes when you stay at the French Market Inn.

So what’s on Decatur Street? The 14 blocks of the French Quarter part of Decatur Street is a waterfront strip that in the past has hosted the kinds of businesses a port would have, becoming a bohemian haven with a vibrant goth and punk scene in the 80s.

Some places, like Cafe du MondeCentral Grocery and Tujague’s remained to this day; others are long gone. Today, the street is as vibrant as ever even though the punk clubs and dive bars had been replaced by restaurants that cater to tourists, and bars and clubs that have more traditional jazz bands.

You will also find a lot of zydeco-blasting souvenir shops lining the street, a few funky bars, and lots of shopping (from national chains like Sephora to unique local artist co-ops and vintage stores).

If walking around the French Quarter isn’t quite your speed, you can opt for a pedicab, which is an easy way to navigate through the French Quarter and surrounding areas. If it’s a nice day out, why not do some sightseeing and burn off all that delicious Creole food at the same time? From bike tours to paddlesports, there are many ways to explore New Orleans while you stay active.

Other transportation options include streetcars, buses, cabs, Uber and Lyft, and even a ferry that goes to Algiers on the West Bank. One of the most versatile and easy options for visitors to the city is the City Sightseeing New Orleans Hop-On, Hop-Off double-decker bus tour. It’s a nice way to travel from the French Quarter to the Garden District and Magazine Street shopping district, and the price includes two- or three-tour packages. The buses come to each stop every 30 minutes, allowing you to travel and sightsee throughout New Orleans at your own pace.

Where to eat

Starting earlier in the day, from the iconic Creole grand dames to contemporary wonders helmed by award-winning chefs, you can easily find tasty renditions of the New Orleans and southern staples on many local brunch menus.

Got a New Orleans food bucket list? Gumbo, jambalaya, po-boys, crawfish étouffée — all sorts of deliciousness await within walking distance from the hotel — including excellent, fresh local seafood.

Whether you prefer to be guided through a narrated tour by a savvy local or explore on your own, there are some very interesting culinary and cocktail tours available in the French Quarter and nearby, plus cooking demos and classes if you want to take it to another level.

Is there a better place to indulge your sweet tooth than New Orleans? We think not. With its French and Spanish roots, and its rich Creole and Cajun cuisines, the Crescent City is not a place to count calories. From Doberge cake to Bananas Foster there is an abundance of confections that will satisfy even the most discerning dessert lover. Learn more about our top picks for the best spots to get dessert in the Quarter, from the iconic beignets to southern staples like pralines and bread pudding.

The French Quarter knows no meaning of the last call, being open for business 24/7, and that includes quite a few restaurants. So when the late-night cravings hit, you have plenty of choices within walking distance from the French Market Inn, from the wallet-friendly takeout-only Verti Marte to the chic Justine. (Read here about a few of our favorite spots where you can eat after 9 p.m. in the French Quarter.)

What to do

The world is your oyster when it comes to exploring the many attractions of the French Quarter. Being over 300 years old, the Quarter is packed with historic buildings and museums. Just walking around gawking at the many architectural gems (The wrought iron! The balconies and courtyards!) can take hours.

Whether you’re here on a girls trip, business trip, a romantic couple’s adventure, a family visit with the kids in tow, on the budget, or only a short visit, there’s lots to do and explore on any given day, 24/7. Theater, live music, excitement for all ages on the magnificent Mississippi River — it’s all within walking distance from the hotel.

Where to shop

You’re in luck when it comes to shopping options near French Market Inn, as there are three malls nearby, and the area is packed with boutiques (try Chartres St. near Canal) and souvenir shops (head down Decatur toward Esplanade when you leave the hotel). For unique, well-priced local art and souvenirs, try the French Market. The French Market’s Shops at the Colonnade is a strip of shops also worth a visit if you’re shopping for souvenirs or local specialties.

Also, why not stock up on edible souvenirs before you head home? You can buy pralines, hot sauces, Zapp’s special edition chips, beignet mix, chicory coffee, and many more of your favorites near the hotel.

The best time of the year to visit

So, when should you visit? It really depends on your stamina and tolerance for the heat, because we’ve got something going on all year round. In New Orleans, we honor just about every local food there is (and some drinks) with a festival, not to mention the packed party schedule that never lets up, from the Carnival to Super Sunday to the Saints football season.

In other words, the Crescent City’s dance card is pretty much always full, even when the heat and humidity descend on the city in late spring and till mid-fall. Come fall, the city ramps it up with Halloween and a calendar full of foodie-haven and music festivals. There’s a festival, sometimes two, going on every weekend!

No matter when you visit and with whom, take advantage of the French Market Inn specials, group rates, and best-rate guarantee for greater savings to spend on New Orleans famous French Quarter cuisine and enjoying everything this magnificent city has to offer. Reserve your room today!