Hotel At a Glance: Hotel St. Pierre
Hotel St. Pierre's row of 18th-century Creole cottages earned this quaint inn a spot on the National Register of Historic Places, fitting in with the French Quarter's multicultural heritage and patchwork architecture. From this spot, you're not far from Bourbon Street's burlesque clubs, restaurants, and music venues are just steps away, as is Jackson Square. Here, you can watch plein-air artists paint or head to Cafe du Monde, a 24-hour coffee shop famous for its chicory coffee and fluffy beignets. Also nearby is the Faubourg Marigny district, an off-the-grid Bohemian district rife with shops, restaurants, and music.
- What to do nearby:: Explore the French Market's shops, flea market, farmer's market, and ample dining options.
- Relax in spacious rooms outfitted with antique and period furniture while enjoying views of the hotel's quaint tropical courtyards.
- Go for a swim in the hotel's two pools, tucked between outdoor seating areas and plant-rich courtyards.
- Press recommendations: New York Times' "Frugal Traveler" recommended the hotel for trips to the French Quarter
- Notable guests: Louis Armstrong once stayed here, and Tennessee Williams, who lived across the street, would often stop at the front desk to visit with friends.
New Orleans’s French Quarter: Let the Good Times Roll
"Stop thinking of New Orleans as the worst-organized city in the United States," writes author Dan Baum in Nine Lives, his post-Katrina book. "Start thinking of it as the best-organized city in the Caribbean." Some folks think there is something distinctly foreign about New Orleans, a place where people’s priorities seem inclined toward enjoying life and relishing the moment at hand. Nothing says it better than the town’s unofficial Cajun creed: “Laissez les bons temp rouler,” or "Let the good times roll."
Historical buildings with intricate wrought-iron balconies line the narrow streets of New Orleans’s French Quarter. Here, street musicians often fill the air with jazz music, their trombones and tubas swinging back and forth. Just off the Jackson Square park and near the towering St. Louis Cathedral, the legendary Café Du Monde serves beignets under heaping piles of powdered sugar, as well as cups of iced or steaming café au lait.
And then there's Bourbon Street, where neon lights advertise frozen cocktails and gaudy strip clubs and crowds gather along 13 city blocks. The nearby Frenchmen Street, just north of the Quarter, provides a slightly less touristy taste of New Orleans nightlife. Some of the city’s most popular live jazz and blues bars dominate this historic two-block district, with each venue hosting world-class musicians nearly every night of the week. Jazz fills the air at the Spotted Cat Music Club, where a sign warns that both drinks and drunks are barred from the piano—but like all rules in New Orleans, it's one that's bound to get bent from time to time.