A few weeks ago, I was very fortunate to be invited by the Hotel Monteleone to stay for a weekend in the vibrant city of New Orleans. Walking into the hotel, I was surrounded with warm hospitality and a sense of deep rooted history. From the moment we arrived, the service was impeccable. After checking-in, Rami, Humphrey and I were escorted to our luxurious one bedroom suite. The hotel is pet friendly which I love because I always want my baby Humphrey with me wherever I go! The Hotel Monteleone team surpassed all of my expectations in ensuring that our stay was comfortable and relaxing!
What I loved the most about the Hotel Monteleone was enjoying all of the the comforts of the hotel paired with the rich culture of New Orleans, all right at our doorstep!
Things to Do at Hotel Monteleone
Visit the Carousel Bar: The Carousel Bar is arguably ‘the’ most popular bar in New Orleans. You may ask, “But what makes this bar such an attractive destination?” The bar is built like a merry-go-round with the seats & counter revolving around the the center of the bar! TBH, I have never seen any other bar like this before so its definitely a must visit when in New Orleans. Apart from an extensive cocktail menu, the Carousel Bar offers opportunities to be immersed in New Orleans culture with live Jazz music on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. You can have a look at their schedule here.
Rami and I spent every evening enjoying pre-dinner drinks and chatting with people from all over the world at the Carousel Bar. One word of advice: If you want to be sure to secure a spot at the revolving bar, get there early, especially on the weekends! We saw the bar seats fill up as early as 11am (yes, that’s when they open).
Eat At Criollo: We had the opportunity to enjoy lunch at Criollo in honor of COOLinary Month — This is the New Orleans version of Restaurant Week! Basically, 80 award winning restaurants offer prix fixe lunch and dinner menus inspired by the history and culture of New Orleans during the month of August. Our lunch was delicious and the perfect finale to our wonderful weekend in NOLA.
Hang Out on the Rooftop: New Orleans has some of the best sunsets I’ve ever seen. Just before the sun completely sets, there are a few minutes when the sky turns rose gold. I remember that evening so vividly. The breeze was cool and I was with my little family taking in that moment and I was at peace. I’ll never forget that day. If you get to the roof early enough, I suggest taking a relaxing dip in the pool and staying to watch the sunset.
Fitness Room: Access to a gym anywhere I stay is a huge plus for me. It always feels great to start the day right (especially when I know I’ll be indulging all day).
Things to Do in New Orleans
Cafe Du Monde: I have a confession… Even though I try to stay away, I love doughnuts and since the beignet is the official state doughnut of Louisiana I just had to try it. In New Orleans, there is nowhere better than Cafe Du Monde for coffee & beignets. The cafe is open 24 hours a day, serving up the most fresh and crispy beignets you will ever eat! Once we were finished eating, we walked over to Washington Artillery Park located directly across Decatur St. from Jackson Square. Because of its elevation, it has a commanding view of both Jackson Square and the Mississippi River. We enjoyed a beautiful sunset over St. Louis Cathedral and if you’re lucky, you may even find a jazz band playing on the street!
Live Music: After speaking with many New Orleans residents about the best Jazz show in town, we decided on Snug Harbor on Frenchmen Street. According to our Uber Driver and their own menu, Snug Harbor has the BEST burgers in town. Since I’m not a big meat-eater, I thought the burger was ok but Rami LOVED his burger. The burger come with a side of baked potato (fully loaded if you want) and I will say, the baked potato was AH-MAZING! Snug Harbor has live music every night with sets at 8pm and 10pm. The dining room is separate from the music room and they don’t serve food where the music is played so I suggest arriving early, having drinks in the bar room, eating in the dining room and then enjoying NOLA Jazz in the music room. Frenchmen Street is a lively area full of live music and fun bars and I highly recommend checking it out!
Royal Street: Here you will find Hotel Monteleone! along with art galleries, antique stores, world class restaurants and some of the most picturesque architecture that New Orleans has to offer! One of our favorite restaurants on Royal Street is Mr. B’s Bistro.
Canal Street: Canal Street was originally intended to serve as the main street of New Orleans and is the starting point of many tours. Here you will find great views of the famous New Orleans street cars along with awesome shops, theaters and restaurants. If you’re looking for a spot to eat on Canal Street, I would suggest Palace Cafe. If you’re in the mood to watch a broadway show, check out the breathtaking Saenger Theater.
Bourbon Street: No New Orleans visit is complete without a visit to Bourbon Street. There are people around all day but at night the street really comes to life offering some of the best bars, clubs and live music venues New Orleans. Try Fritzel’s European Jazz Club and Pat O Brian’s for awesome music.