New Orleans Is Open And Ready To Host

October 26, 2021
Photo by Jeff Anding

Photo by Jeff Anding

As travel and in-person events reignite around the country, New Orleans is welcoming meetings and events. Major renovations and new luxury lifestyle hotel properties have recently opened. Meetings are safer than ever with more than 84% of eligible New Orleans adults having received at least one COVID vaccine.

New Orleans is built to host, as meetings, conventions and cultural events return and thrive. Travel and in-person events reignite around the country and New Orleans is welcoming meetings, events and visitors of all kinds.

Major renovations and new luxury lifestyle hotel properties are coming online. Chefs continue to create culinary magic in our 1,200+ restaurants. A revived music scene is rocking again. The resilient city of New Orleans is open and ready to host meetings and events of all sizes. New Orleans represents a 300+-year-old culture unlike anywhere else in the world and has always been built to host. Couple that with ongoing developments throughout the city and you have an enhanced meeting experience created by a world-renowned hospitality industry of seasoned professionals focused on delivering success. Notable new developments include:

  • Four Seasons Hotel & Private Residences New Orleans opened its doors in August 2021. Located on the Riverfront at the foot of Canal Street, the hotel is the latest addition to the city’s luxury accommodations. The 34-story, mixed use development houses a 341-key hotel on the lower floors and 81 luxury condominiums on the upper floors. The property includes two restaurants, The Chandelier Bar, spa, roof-top pool and bar area, a cultural museum and 29,000 square feet of meeting space.
  • Virgin Hotels New Orleans is the latest lifestyle brand to open its doors in the Warehouse District in August 2021. The property features 238 chambers as well as multiple dining and drinking outlets including the brand’s signature Commons Club and Funny Library Coffee Shop.
  • Hotel St. Vincent opened in June 2021 in the Lower Garden District. This is the latest project by designer and hotelier Liz Lambert and her partners at MML Hospitality. The 75-room hotel honors Saint Vincent’s storied past with highly considered restoration and modern design that complements the property’s historic character. The hotel features two restaurants as well as the lobby bar, pool and courtyard and a modern event space with an open floor plan adjacent to the hotel all available for private events.
  • One 11 Hotel, the first new hotel in over 50 years in the French Quarter, opened in December 2020. Located on Iberville St., it is a chic, 83-room hotel that opened in December 2020. Guests and locals will find reprieve from the energy of the surrounding streets in the common areas, including a sophisticated lobby bar and art gallery and a vibrant rooftop with panoramic views of the French Quarter and Mississippi River.
  • Kimpton Hotel Fontenot, located at the intersection of Poydras and Tchoupitoulas Streets in the Central Business District, is a property that pays homage to the city’s rich musical history. Originally opening briefly in March 2020, the hotel’s grand reopening was in May 2021. The Peacock Room, the crown jewel of the Kimpton Hotel Fontenot, offers a contemporary selection of hard to come by spirits and the menu features refined regional classics as well as live music. The property features more than 12,000 square feet of flexible meeting and event space, with a bright, modern style.

Live music thrives in New Orleans this Fall with the launch of NOLAxNOLA, the country’s first-ever club-based music festival, formed by musicians and music clubs, for musicians and New Orleans’ cultural economy, starting an annual tradition. From October 7-17, there were more than 200 shows in 35 music venues over 10 days, delivering live music safely in intimate club environments around the city.

“The Fall of 2021 is packed full of celebrations, museum exhibitions and holiday events such as the Krewe of Boo parade, that returned last weekend for the first time since 2019, and has reenergized the city’s creative spirit,” says Stephen Perry, president & CEO of New Orleans & Company. “With the sheer number of extraordinary cultural opportunities that can only be found in New Orleans, the city is ready for visitors to come and enjoy authentic experiences unlike any other destination.”

This month, New Orleans hosted more than 3,000 people for the Specialty Coffee Expo at the New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, with guests enjoying the stunning new 7.5-acre outdoor pedestrian park. Generously, the Specialty Coffee Association donated 50% of all attendee revenue to hourly employees at local coffee shops and provided leftover tradeshow materials such as milk and furniture to four local nonprofit organizations in New Orleans. Sustainability efforts are a major focus at the Convention Center as they work to achieve a LEED silver certification, increase donations to local nonprofit organizations and reduce the carbon footprint for upcoming conventions.

Face-to-face meetings in New Orleans are safer than ever with more than 84 percent of eligible New Orleans adults having received at least one COVID vaccine, which is well above the national average of 75 percent. Since the beginning of the pandemic, New Orleans’ tourism industry has been committed to the highest COVID safety standards, and NOLAxNOLA, large events and small gatherings are no exception. During the recent impacts of Hurricane Ida, New Orleans was fortunate to be protected by the effective levee system put in place after Hurricane Katrina. While our neighbors in Louisiana are still recovering, New Orleans is okay, resilient and open. There has never been a better time to visit or plan an event in New Orleans as successful conventions continue to thrive.

“We couldn’t have asked for a better experience while planning and executing our NAEC 2021 Convention and Exposition in New Orleans. Like many planners, we were challenged with navigating COVID-19 restrictions and attendee questions following Hurricane Ida, and we couldn’t have done it without the trust and support from New Orleans & Company, the New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center and the Hilton New Orleans Riverside. Attendees and exhibitors are still talking about how smooth the event ran. It was such a relief to know that we were in good hands every step of the way.” - Rena Cozart, Executive Director, National Association of Elevator Contractors (NAEC) Convention & Exposition, October 2021

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