ISN’T IT ROMANTIC
Honeymoon destinations don’t always have to include palm trees and all-inclusive resorts. In fact, the post-nuptial road less traveled can be one that is exciting and creative.
Let the good times roll!
Take New Orleans for example. You won’t find a grain of sand within its city limits, but you will discover an historic southern port town brimming with romantic distractions, well-preserved architecture, and charming neighborhoods. It’s a sexy city that can be naughty or nice no to mention a whole lot of fun as you wind your way down Bourbon Street, slip into a smoky jazz bar, or dine by candlelight at some intimate bistro. Once you’ve said the “I dos” get ready for the
ceremonial rice (and beans) by plotting your
escape to The Big Easy. And be prepared to
laissez le bon temps rouler!
WHERE TO STAY:
If you’re going to travel to a place as romantic as New Orleans, why would you stay in a chain hotel? You wouldn’t. Instead, sequester yourselves behind one of the seven historic cottages belonging to this French Quarter hideaway. The former home of naturalist and painter John James Audubon, who lived here while completing his Birds of America series from 1821-22, features one and two-bedroom cottages with private, guest-only access and a shared saltwater pool. And, with just seven cottages that means no crowds, plenty of privacy, and no more than a dozen other guests at any given time. Each abode features various amenities, such as hardwood floors, exposed brick walls and private courtyards. A continental breakfast is delivered to your doorstep each morning with turndown service in the evening. http://www.auduboncottages.com
WHERE TO EAT:
MURIEL’S JACKSON SQUARE
Housed in a magnificent 15,000 square foot, two-story manse restored to its original 1800s Vieux Carre splendor is this delightful dining destination. The Creole and Cajun menu features an array of mouthwatering appetizers, entrees and desserts along with a nightly tasting menu. The most romantic tables are those on the balcony overlooking Jackson Square or in the serene courtyard. And, if you think you saw something out of the corner of your eye it’s probably the resident ghost. Yes, Muriel’s Jackson Square is most definitely haunted! www.muriels.com
WHAT TO DO:
The best way to explore New Orleans is by neighborhood. Spend a few hours—or longer—inhaling the history, architecture, attractions and more. The people are friendly, too, and likely to share their favorite and best-kept city secrets.
The French Quarter
Skirting this neighborhood and resting close to the Mississippi River is the legendary Café du Monde. For about five bucks you can get a trio of piping hot beignets, a square piece of fried dough dusted with powdered sugar, and a cup of coffee served black or au lait. Nearby is the French Market, a six block area featuring dozens of retail shops, performance venues, restaurants, cafes, a flea market and farmers’ market. If you’re in the mood to party, Bourbon Street can be a sobering experience. Leave your inhibitions on the next block and experience Fat Tuesday any day of the week. Order a hurricane from Pat O’Brien’s in a go-cup- yep, it’s legal to drink openly on the streets of New Orleans (and a near requirement on Bourbon Street). It’s a party all night every night in this part of town.
The Garden District
This quaint section of New Orleans is like a museum without walls. With each turn and passing glance you’ll find a well-preserved collection of antebellum mansions, manicured gardens, and southern pride. Movie buffs will recognize the mansion at 2707 Coliseum Street from the film The Curious Case of Benjamin Button starring Brad Pitt. Novelist Anne Rice’s former home is located in this neighborhood, too. Other famous residents include Sandra Bullock, Nicolas Cage, and Peyton Manning. No visit to the Garden District is complete without a walk through Lafayette Cemetery No. 1. Opened in 1833 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, above the ground graves and tombs line the cracked walkways of this eerie fortress.
The Warehouse District
Art enthusiasts will enjoy a trek through this neighborhood where a pair of fine museums, the Ogden Museum of Southern Art and the Contemporary Arts Center, is located. A collection of contemporary galleries fan out in either direction and showcase the works of local talent. History buffs won’t want to miss a visit to the nearby National World War II Museum.
For more information:
Visit the New Orleans CVB