Distinctive Travels Distinctive Travels
Resorts Hotels Cruises Tours Spas

New Orleans, Louisiana
web: marriott.com

By Carol Weinshel, Correspondent

From the Riverwalk along the Mississippi to Bourbon Street, one can find New Orleans alive and exciting at almost any hour. A short walk from the Marriott on Canal Street a visitor can easily savor its Cajun delights, enjoy pralines at Aunt Sally's, coffee at Café du Monde, browse in the antique shops in the French Quarter, listen to jazz after dark, hop on a trolley car or just relax in a horse-draw carriage for a romantic view of the historic Garden District. Fun, alive, beautiful, quaint - all with old-fashioned Southern hospitality, it is no wonder New Orleans hosts so many visitors throughout the year. Riverwalk. This is the entrance to exciting shops, a brand new aquarium and the harbor along the Mississippi River.

New Orleans Marriott // Located on Canal Street, close to shopping, Harrah's, the Riverwalk and the Morial Convention Center, the Marriott lives up to its reputation. All the amenities for business and pleasure as well as fine restaurants, a Concierge Desk staffed with people who live and love the city and the Marriott name make this property a delightful home away from home.

Places to see // A walk along the Riverwalk takes one right to the Aquarium, a relatively new addition to New Orleans' harbor. There one can feel safe to walk or jog along the Mississippi early in the morning or at sunset. Jackson Square is home to the famous statue of Andrew Jackson atop his horse and is surrounded by beautiful gardens. Museums dedicated to southern history are aplenty as are outdoor jazz concerts.

Places to eat

Inside New Orleans.com // A 'must' during a trip to New Orleans is a dining experience at Brennan's on Royal. Home of Bananas Foster, diners are treated to a table side show in preparation of this delectable treat. On a less formal side, is Brennan's Palace Café on Canal still offering a wide variety of poultry, fish and meat `a la New Orleans. Here, a favorite is the White Chocolate Bread Pudding - light, fluffy and truly delicious. For those visitors looking to continue savoring the best of New Orleans, The Commander's Palace and Emeril's should not be missed and, if you want to enjoy a delicious meal where Oysters Rockefeller were created, then don't miss Antoine's. The home to cuisine at its best, one can find Cajun cooking, beignets, coffee laced with chicory and muffalettas not to mention gumbo in all varieties. A visit to New Orleans means leaving all plans for a diet at home!

Entertainment/Night Life // In this city that never sleeps, one can enjoy listening to live music at the House of Blues or Preservation Hall where New Orleans jazz is at its best.

Shopping // One does not have to walk far to enjoy the shopping experience in New Orleans. From the downtown Mall on Canal Street to the Jackson Brewery to the antique shops in the French Quarter to the Farmer's Market to the Pedestrian Mall surrounding Jackson Square, New Orleans is a shopper's paradise. Stroll through the streets, window shop and enjoy the antique shop windows lined with silver, have your portrait painted, your palm read and by all means, people watch! Favorite souvenirs of New Orleans include Mardi Gras beads and masks, Pralines, Cajun spices, and coffee, not to mention the myriad of tee shirts designed on the jazz theme.

Activities // Relatively new to the New Orleans scene is Harrah's Casino, bustling with the sound of slot machines, music and people at any hour. A perfect city for conventions, it seems that New Orleans is always playing host. Not all that far out of town is Tulane University, situated in a beautiful area along the trolley route. For museums, theater, sports, history, music, restaurants, this is the place. You can't do it all, but a good place to start is a city tour where you'll hear stories to delight your fancy. Well worth the time, a good tour often stops at a cemetery outside of town. To find out why cemeteries are on top ground, you'll have to take a tour and learn for yourself!

Transportation // Taxis and buses abound and there is an Airport Shuttle Bus to and from the major hotels. With narrow streets and not much parking, one would do well touring on foot. Tips: New Orleans is hot and humid. Light clothes are recommended for the spring and summer as well as comfortable walking shoes. Sneakers and sandals seem to be very popular. Although hot, don't forget to bring a sweater for those cold restaurants, convention meeting rooms and museums. Just as in any city, a word to the wise is "be street smart".

By Carol Weinshel, Correspondent

Alone, on business, in this exciting city, I was invited to attend the National Cable Television Association Conference. I found myself in a hotel with all the amenities one could want and a staff more willing and able to assist than I cold ever imagine. With suggestions for dinner, advice as to touring during my limited free time and assistance in locating my shuttle bus for my return to the airport, I couldn't have been more comfortable.

The conference was attended by 26,000 people in the Morial Convention Center. Much to my amazement, this facility prides itself in its size - I was told that the Exhibit Hall is the size of 9 football fields. For me, this was like being a little kid in a candy story because the exhibitors were ready, willing and able to shower me as a teacher with gifts and reminders of the Conference. What a wonderful way to be welcomed into a city - and I thought I was alone! For my next trip, I'll be looking forward to visiting the World War II Memorial, which to my disappointment, opened just after I left.