Chic Three-Day Itinerary to Discover New Orleans, Louisiana
Arts & Culture
Food & Wine
My family immigrated to New Orleans from Paris in the 1800s. My Grandmother was born and raised here with lots of familial history within the streets of New Orleans. While it can be a rowdy Mardi Gras party, New Orleans, Louisiana also has a chic and elegant side to it that one ought to explore. It serves incredible cuisine and hosts some of the best chefs in the world. NOLA also has a ton of mystical culture and activities to participate in and plenty of magic to take home with you. Indulge!
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Where to stay
Maison de la Luz
Refined and romantic, this boutique charmer is Southern hospitality defined.
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Ace Hotel New Orleans
A Warehouse District gem close to the French Quarter, with handsome rooms, two hotspot restaurants and a rooftop pool deck with knockout views.
Hotel Saint Vincent
A place of refuge in the 1860s, this boutique hotel was resurrected with psychedelic-patterned wallpapers and an Italian modernist interior.
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Day 1: Exploring NOLA at leisure
The first thing you need to know about NOLA is that you must walk with spirits — drinks, perfume and/or magic – to fit in! Start your day by stopping by Hové Parfumeur. This historic New Orleans perfumery uses the finest essential oils to create fragrances and products for men and women. Next, a stop at the New Orleans Pharmacy Museum is a must. This 1823 apothecary is now a museum with exhibits of early medicines, superstitious cures and more. Finally, you’ve worked up an appetite and owe a visit to Café Amelie for lunch for lighter fare options in the area.
Consider lounging in Jackson Square in the afternoon. You might want to stop by at the Voodoo Museum or perhaps the Seance Bar upstairs in Muriel's. You will not see a sign. Instead, head into Muriel's, and they will point you upstairs. This is a hidden gem!
For the evening, have a drink at the Alto rooftop bar at the Ace Hotel. Head to dinner at Josephine Estelle (reservations required.) This special osteria is a collaborative spirit of James Beard Award-nominated chefs Andy Ticer and Michael Hudman, whose renowned culinary tale is the unlikely marriage between classic Italian recipes and the bright and mysterious flavors of the American south. Finally, consider a nightcap at the stylish Bar Marilou – a French-style bar in a former library (accessed through Maison, you must make a reservation.)
Day 2: The Country Club and exquisite dining
Post breakfast, it is time to stretch your legs by strolling along the Mississippi to the Bywater neighborhood. This walk will take approximately 45 minutes, depending on how many stops you make. You will be walking through Lafayette Square, so figure in some excellent people-watching time. Be sure to take a small bag with a swimsuit and toiletries because you're going for a swim. No, not in the river, but at the fabulous Country Club! The Country Club is a personal favorite because it was once my great-great-grandfather's gorgeous Italianate home. You can read about the ownership of the Dubus family over a cocktail at the beautiful bar overlooking the grounds, which includes a saltwater pool, sauna, hot tub and tropical vegetation. Going early will beat the party crowds to stay on theme with being easy.
Once you have had your poolside fill, time for happy hour at Bacchanal Wine to enjoy music back in the courtyard with an extensive wine list, gentle vibes and steps away from the Ninth Ward.
Head to dinner at N7. You will miss it if you're not paying attention. It has a high wooden fence, and the entrance is somewhat hidden. However, once you step in, the dripping Brugmancia (angel's trumpet) will immediately make you fall in love, and you might not leave. This lovely restaurant features French cuisine with a Japanese influence. It will be hard to choose between sitting outside or indoors at the bar, but I recommend sitting outside. You can see the beautiful bar where you can have a nightcap afterward.
Day 3: Low-key local day
After breakfast at your hotel, head to City Park via tram. Take a four minute walk to catch the tram at Keefe and Lafayette, #91. City Park is huge, with over 1,300 acres to cover so I suggest narrowing it down to the lower bottom half. You will find a Botanical Garden and museums to keep you busy all day.
Once you think you are about to get hungry for lunch, head over to Carmo, a delightful tropical-themed restaurant with vegan, omnivore and fresh seafood options.
Walk that lunch off and hit Haus of Hoodoo, a beautifully curated shop in the Lower Garden District. The staff is incredibly knowledgeable on the matter, and the owner Jessika is a true force of nature. Be sure to pick up one of her hand anointed and fixed Better Business candles to burn on Thursdays. You'll thank me for this pro tip.
Finally, tonight dinner is served at Mosquito Supper Club (Reservations and prepayment required). This incredible restaurant has a truly sustainable model for the planet, people and profit. You will love this unique experience and learn so much about where your food comes from, not only in the physical sense but the people behind it.
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