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Hotel in Bourbon Street Ok for Kids?

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Alexandria, Virginia
posts: 2
Hotel in Bourbon Street Ok for Kids?

I had no clue what Bourbon St. was about when I booked the 4 Points Sheraton on Bourbon St. It had the best online rate for a French Qtr hotel and the reviews were good. Later while reading up on things to do I realised this was the adult entetainement district and am quite upset. I am travelling with a 9 and 15 yr old. I cannot cancel, I will lose the entire amount. Can I stay there safely and still manage to avoid the sleazier aspects of the French Qrtr?

North Carolina
posts: 1,009
reviews: 15
1. Re: Hotel in Bourbon Street Ok for Kids?

We stayed at the Royal Sonesta (also on Bourbon) last year with our kids. We just used the side entrance/exits and ignored Bourbon. You will have to cross Bourbon (other side of the street from the Sonesta I think) to get to most of the places you want. Your kids will likely not notice especially if you use the side street. Do be sure to ask for a quiet (not Bourbon St side) room. You will be fine once you get your bearings.

Pittsburgh...
posts: 418
reviews: 97
2. Re: Hotel in Bourbon Street Ok for Kids?

There are explicit photographs posted outside the buildings of some of the sleazier clubs on Bourbon St. Often you will also see young (er-r-r) "ladies," scantily- clad, standing in the doorways of these places. They are not particularly aggressive, even towards potential customers, so I doubt if they would personally bother you or your children. Most of the heavy crowds and general nastiness of Bourbon St centers around evenings and weekends, but be alert at all times.

My suggestion to you, given the financial arrangements you've already made, is to just go with it, but to exercise caution (for both safety, and the sake of innocence) by keeping the kids with you at all times, and by promptly ducking down the side streets, from Bourbon to Royal, at every opportunity. Perhaps your Hotel has side entrances so that Bourbon St can be avoided entirely? Or, if you are really uncomfortable, have a cab pick you up and drop you off at the front door.

The idea of children on Bourbon St is not unheard of, but I think we're all wondering how you managed to book a trip to New Orleans with "no clue what Bourbon St was about."

Montreal
posts: 404
reviews: 8
3. Re: Hotel in Bourbon Street Ok for Kids?

i agree with the others that you'll be fine...but...i'd suggest maybe street viewing the area for your plan of action on google maps for getting off bourbon street when you step out of the hotel....i noticed you're almost right beside the strip joint with the famous love acts sign so you might want to avoid going in that direction on bourbon so your kids don't see the nudie pics outside or ask too many awkward questions:P

Edited: 10:36 am, December 27, 2012
Montreal
posts: 404
reviews: 8
4. Re: Hotel in Bourbon Street Ok for Kids?

also, i think street viewing it will probably help you decide on whether your morals and values will align with your location. don't think it'll be too bad, but you'll know for sure by looking at what's around you. you know way better than we do, of course what's right for your family :)

College Station...
Destination Expert
for New Orleans
posts: 6,699
reviews: 3
5. Re: Hotel in Bourbon Street Ok for Kids?

Except during the last four days of Carnival ending with Mardi Gras, Bourbon St. is relatively tame during daylight. Depending on your particular sensibilities, you may wonder what all the fuss is about. However, Bourbon St. is no place for children under around 16 to be walking up and down after dark.

The Four Points is a nice hotel generally well located on the corner of Bourbon St. and Toulouse St. Although I can't recall if there is a hotel entrance door onto Toulouse, you can walk along the front of the hotel to Toulouse St. daytime or evening and use that street to get to the more popular family attractions. You will usually be heading towards the River. Though only a short block from Bourbon St., the parallel Royal St., the street of shops (the only bars are affiliated with hotels), has a very family friendly nature, as does the parallel Decatur St. between Canal St. and Ursulines Ave. The area going from the hotel away from the River on Toulouse is a bit more sketchy, but is fine if you want to walk to a cemetery tour late morning or early afternoon.

Get a good map of the French Quarter and surrounding areas and familliarise yourself with the area. Feel free to get back to us with specific questions. If you stay off Bourbon St. after dark, other than its intersection with Toulouse St., I doubt your children will be exposed to any life changing traumatic experiences.

Indianapolis
posts: 361
reviews: 43
6. Re: Hotel in Bourbon Street Ok for Kids?

Although it does get more "risque" during the evening hours I have traveled down Bourbon Street many a time in the middle of the day 1-3 pm and those scantidly clad errr....women are out shaking what God gave them. So if you think Bourbon Street is "safe" for younger eyes because the sun is shining just be aware!

Orlando, FL
posts: 436
reviews: 29
7. Re: Hotel in Bourbon Street Ok for Kids?

Don't be too worried about the ladies standing in the doorways. They are very considerate when they see children coming down the street and they step back into the clubs. We have gone down Bourbon a couple of times with my son and we walk down the middle of the street if it is later in the day so we are away from the posters.

College Station...
Destination Expert
for New Orleans
posts: 6,699
reviews: 3
8. Re: Hotel in Bourbon Street Ok for Kids?

As I said, it depends on your sensibilities. I have found that during the day the "exotic entertainers" in front of the "gentlemen's" clubs (usually one per business) are not "out" on the sidewalk or street, but rather are inside the open door thresholds, are not "shaking" but being rather still (although they do seem to like to smile and wave), and not much more "scantily" clad than typically seen on a US beach popular with ladies in their 20s, though the apparel style is somewhat more suggestive (not many high heels on the beach). I would classify the small 8" X 10" pictures in front of the businesses as "hard R" not "X". Also the "gentlemen's club" businesses, while certainly not scarce, do not dominate the street.

In any event, by using Toulouse St., instead of walking up or down Bourbon St., you won't notice all that much of this type of activity.

Missouri
posts: 1,041
reviews: 29
9. Re: Hotel in Bourbon Street Ok for Kids?

I generally agree with the others. When you walk out of the front of the hotel, DO NOT TURN TO YOUR RIGHT. If you do so, you hit sleaze pretty quickly. Turn to your left and walk a few steps to Toulouse Street and turn right to head towards the river and the family-friendly action. Should not be a problem.

Missouri
posts: 1,041
reviews: 29
10. Re: Hotel in Bourbon Street Ok for Kids?

P.S. You may want to take a ride on the St Charles Streetcar line. It is a pleasant and interesting experience. The quickest way to get to it is to go down Bourbon Street. I recommend that you don't. My adult daughter won't even walk me past the sleaze of that part of Bourbon. Instead, as Loopwhole suggested, use Royal Street to get to the Canal Street area.