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New Orleans -- best area to stay in to see the city?

New Orleans -- best area to stay in to see the city?

Old Jul 19th, 2005, 05:34 PM
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New Orleans -- best area to stay in to see the city?

This is our first trip to New Orleans, and we have no idea which area is best to stay in. I've heard some controversial things about certain parts of the city not being as safe, and certain parts being more festive/beautiful. I'd prefer something in the Marriott or Hilton chains. If not a particular hotel, at least some specific streets or areas would be appreciated. Thanks!
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Old Jul 19th, 2005, 05:43 PM
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We stayed in the Marriot that is right on the edge of the French Quarter. We were very happy with the location. We were in walking distance or trolley distance to everything we wanted to visit in the city. We received the Marriot through Priceline for $50 which was a great value. The highlight of our trip was visiting the plantations outside of the city on the Louisanna River Road. HIGHLY recommend the Laura Plantation tour. It was excellent.
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Old Jul 19th, 2005, 05:47 PM
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Thanks tdelano. Are there tours to these plantations, or will we need to rent a car. I wasn't planning to, but of course, we could do a day or two drive through the area. There are several Marriotts in N.O. Do you know which one you stayed at[or which street it was on?]
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Old Jul 19th, 2005, 06:39 PM
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Hilton Riverside-On Mississippi-Riverwalk mall attached-great sports bar-trolley to French Quarter or can walk-Harrohs casino across street
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Old Jul 19th, 2005, 09:47 PM
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There are a lot of tours that will pick you up from your hotel and take you to the plantation(s). Of course this will be more expensive than renting a car and driving there yourself. The swamp tours work that way too.
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Old Jul 20th, 2005, 03:10 AM
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First, don't believe everything you hear about New Orleans. The "safety" hype is sometimes somewhat hysterical. Things change over time and some neighborhoods (Faubourg Marigny, Garden District) which were kinda unsafe 10 years ago are fine now.

If you WANT chains, I'd probably choose the Renaissance (Marriott) properties as they are new.
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Old Jul 20th, 2005, 04:25 AM
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Thanks to all, for the advice. Dan, you seem to feel we'd be better off staying at a local place. Any recommendations? I'm open to dividing our time, since we have five nights total.

Also, I'm looking for a couple restaurant recommendations. I don't want too upscale. Looking more for good places for local food, that the locals frequent.
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Old Jul 20th, 2005, 05:00 AM
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We stayed at the Marriott on Canal for our last trip in January. (Not the JW Marriott, which is across the street)
It was very nice, even had a Starbucks inside. The restaurant on the top floor was GREAT for a romantic evening. We loved the food and you are able to look out over the river.
However, there was some construction going on a few of the floors that woke us up every single morning! It started about 8AM and I like to sleep in a little bit on my vacations. I really think they might have considered closing the floor right below where the construction was going on.
Also, we used the parking garage next to the hotel and they broke my glove compartment (while checking for registration).
Long post, but what I'm really trying to say is that although the hotel was nice and the room was comfortable I'd like to try a different hotel next time.
Hope this helps.
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Old Jul 20th, 2005, 06:58 AM
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tdelano did you go on the Laura Plantation tour before or after the fire on 8/9/2004? Or long after the fire?

I'm curious as to what condition it's in since I'll be in New Orleans in February. Thanks.
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Old Jul 24th, 2005, 07:29 PM
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LoisL- We stayed at the Marriot on Canal Street.

Indytravel- Our visit was in Oct. 2003. I was unaware that the Laura Plantation suffered from a fire. I hate to hear that. Do you know the extent of the damage?
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Old Jul 24th, 2005, 07:36 PM
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indytravel- I was able to locate the Laura Plantation website with information on the fire. I really hated to see the extensive damage but would second what the website says about the tour really being about the people and the story and not so much about the house and furnishings. It would have been a great tour just to sit down and listen/ talk with the guide. The information they shared was much more than a usual tour. We also toured the plantation next door which was a beautiful house and grounds but the tour information was not even comparable.
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Old Jul 25th, 2005, 06:30 AM
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Thanks tdelano. It sounds like the quality of the tour will make it worth a stop.

It'll be interesting to hear and see the next chapter in their history of recovering after the fire.
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