Hotel at a Glance: The Historic Cotton Exchange
Ornamental white columns and a gilded canopy flank the entrance to The Historic Cotton Exchange. Inside, walls hung with French impressionist paintings give the lobby a stylish, sophisticated feel. The hotel sits on the cusp of both the French Quarter and the Central Business District, giving you easy access to attractions in either neighborhood.
- Distance from Bourbon Street: 1.5 blocks
- Go swimming: The hotel has a garden rooftop pool.
- Drink this: Specialty martinis are popular at the elegant lobby bar.
- Travel 19th-century style on the St. Charles streetcar, built in 1855. It still passes right in front of the hotel and is the oldest continuously operating street railway system on Earth.
New Orleans’ Central Business District: Vibrant Downtown with Lots of Historic Character
In the 1960s, many of the historic neighborhoods of the Central Business District were torn down to make way for high-rise office buildings and parking lots. Had a preservationist group not intervened, the neighborhood would have looked a lot different today. They not only salvaged many of the neighborhood’s 19th- and 20th-century buildings, but also much of its character.
Today, you can see some of this character at historic Lafayette Square, which hosts free concerts. Or, take the St. Charles streetcar past antebellum mansions and southern live oaks en route to the Garden District, just to the south.
If you’re in the mood for some shopping, head to The Shops at Canal Place, a massive indoor shopping complex along the Mississippi River. From here, you can easily walk to Harrah’s, the Audubon Aquarium of the Americas, and other attractions along the riverfront.