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“Like a funeral home” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Magnolia Mansion

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Magnolia Mansion
3.0 of 5 Inn   |   2127 Prytania Street, New Orleans, LA 70130   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #81 of 144 New Orleans B&B and Inns
Potomac, MD
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
24 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
“Like a funeral home”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed September 2, 2012

Let me start by saying, this was not our first choice and we booked this place due to it's proximity to Tulane ...we happened to snag the last and only room available, The Napoleon Room. The pros: the room and property were clean, Tim, the manager was nothing but nice and courtious. There was plenty of on street parking and location was good.

Now to the not so good...on first impression for a property in the Garden District, you were greeted with scruby grounds and a front door flanked by fake plants faded to a sickly unnatural color. Hello, isn't this supposed to be the Garden District! The style and decor was a bad rendition of the victorian period with a collection of dusty artificial flowers, gold spray paint, uncomfortable reproduction furniture and a garrish red grand hallway that literally took your breath away in a bad way. I didn't know you could get that much bright red in one room. I understand this might be alot of people's cup of tea and idea of "fancy", no problem. You can tell this mansion has beautiful bones and architecture with so much potential but just fell flat on so many points and has clearly seen better days. The place feels and smells like an old funeral home that has seen better days and I don't understand who would find this place "romantic". To be honest, from the pictures, I kind of expected this and because we really just needed a room, I was willing to accept all that, had it not been for the fact how poorly thought out and uncomfortable our room turned out to be. We stayed here for 2 nights and I would have complained or asked to move to another room, but the few times we happened to see Tim, there were other people around and out of respect I would not want to do so publicly. Nor were there any open rooms. If you come here, think twice about settling for the Napoleon Room. First, the bathroom was just dismal, especially for a place that bills itself as romantic. The whole room and bathroom had such poor and unappealing lighting that I had to sit outside on the front veranda if I wanted to put on makeup. Forget about taking a bath or shower here. It takes minimum of 10 minutes to produce any hot water and the hand held "shower" that is part of the bathtub faucet produces only a small TRICKLE of water. After you soaped up with the cold water, plan on another 10 minutes to try to rinse it off. My husband wanted to kill me. I resorted to showering in my daughter's dorm. They thoughtfully provided a wall mounted makeup mirror, but it was not operable. The small pedestal sink provided barely enough room to put down your toothbrush. The good thing is that the bathroom was large enough to make it more comfortable for a traveler should they want to make improvements. On to the room...It was a small room (that's ok) but not laid out or furnished with a traveler in mind. Every square inch was crowded by useless furniture....2 stiff formal type parlor chairs (the only place to put your suitcases), a small dresser with no usualbe surface because it was covered with an old TV, folddown desk that served no purpose and took up precious space, a useless stand up valet where they should have left space for a luggage rack and tiny nighttables barely able to hold a cell phone. Again, it did not have to be this way and I wonder who looks at this and thinks this is good. As an interior designer and space planner, again, I could have made this room so much more comfortable in 5 minutes. You get the picture. There was barely a surface in the room for your personal things. The bed springs squeeked and the bedding was just a worn, "bed in the bag" type collection of dated polyester, not at all hospitality or hotel quality. We did not have a good nights sleep. I will say the cable TV,fan and air conditioning worked very well. There is nothing here that can't be easily fixed should the management take to heart my comments and desire to give the guest a much better experience.

Room Tip: Stay away from the Napoleon Room
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NewOrleansMsMagnolia, Owner at Magnolia Mansion, responded to this review, November 25, 2012
We are thankful that this guest appreciated our location, parking, A/C, Cable TV, Fan and our Host. We are located right at the gateway to the Garden District, just off St. Charles Avenue & Mardi Gras Parade Route. Yes…this is the Garden District and our courtyards are surrounded by 150 year old living Oaks, Hedges of Holly and Camellias, and our garden is filled with Magnolia Trees, Azaleas, Gardenias, Night Blooming Jasmine, etc. However, I choose not to have living plants flanking our entry doors as I consider this décor and the gets changed seasonally, as well as for weddings. The faux plants do need replacing at least once a year after a hot summer, as they have faded some by the end of summer. I usually wait and replace them with faux silk Poinsettias for the Christmas Holidays for cost effective reasons and so they last through the entire season & do not drop their leaves. I then buy new faux silk plants at the beginning of the year. Regarding the comment about our grounds being scrubby…these guests stayed here August 24th & 25th, four days before Hurricane Isaac hit New Orleans. We had nonstop rain for weeks prior to the Hurricane landfall. Our grounds are serviced and manicured each and every Thursday or Friday (depending on weather and guest arrivals). However, if it is pouring down rain, service must be delayed until weather permits.
Having addressed the above, may I say that anyone traveling anywhere, should carefully research the place they ultimately choose to stay by visiting the properties official website in order to view all available photos, and most importantly, to read the properties complete description, room descriptions, amenities, location and policies. I strongly suggest that all travelers personally contact the property they are considering, so they can ask questions if they are extremely particular about specific details and amenities for their accommodations. Regardless, when booking a room, no matter if it is a traveler’s first, second or third choice… if one is disappointed in their choice, could it be that it is possible they did not take the time to fully research before booking… or they booked solely on availability or pricing. If these travelers “kind of expected this from the photos” and because they just needed a room, I don’t really understand their emotionally charged complaints and/or criticisms. The decor is simply a matter of taste and a difference of opinion of what is visually appealing and what is not. They made the wrong choice for what their aesthetic needs desire and/or and comfort require… it is as simple as that. Decisions are usually made based on something that altered one’s final decision, whether it was availability, location, pricing, or policies etc. Perhaps these guests did not visit our official website properties, which clearly show photos of each unique guestroom and give a complete detailed description of each unique bathroom; some have photos of the pedestal sinks and tubs etc. These same photos are available on other sites to view as well, however the complete description may not always be available on other sites. This traveler booked online over an extremely busy hot rainy August weekend. Note: Only when booking directly with Magnolia Mansion are you guaranteed the exact room description, floor, bathroom & themed room type of your choice. Otherwise, only the room type is available through 3rd party reservation systems. For example, we have 2 Queen Standard Rooms, 2 Queen Deluxe Rooms, 3 Premier Plus King/Queen, and 2 Luxury Kings (the Lux Kings are not available through any online reservation system at this time).
As far as the funeral home comparison…I don’t know where this traveler has attended previous funerals; however they must have been over the top and very opulent. Personally, the funeral homes I have been to look nothing like this property, as they are usually beige & brown décor. Magnolia Mansion has a bold beautiful red grand hallway, white parlors, butter yellow dining room and golden back foyer. However, here is a point of interest…the history of this property shows that there were two funerals held at this property (prior to decorating as it is shown today). The first was held in 1869, for the man who built this home, Alexander Harris. The 2nd was held in 1887 for homes 2nd owner, John Henry Maginnis, who was struck by lightning on July 4th. Another fact travelers & history lovers may find interesting is that this building also served as the American Red Cross Headquarters in World War II from 1939 to 1954. It has also served as a wedding venue for hundreds of brides over the years. Both wedding venues and funeral homes use faux silk flower arrangements for décor when attempting to stay within restricted budgets. When budgets permit, real flowers are used. If travelers don’t mind having a few extra hundred dollars added to their stay, we would be glad to provide fresh flowers upon request. However, our décor is strictly to provide the illusion of a time gone by.

My Mother & I bought this property in 2001, right after 9/11. At the time of purchase, this building was in a deplorable blighted condition, and we are given credit by many in the historic / preservation community for saving this beautiful piece of architecture and history. It has truly been a labor of love. Soon after a complete renovation, I opened Magnolia Mansion, a licensed hotel that operates more as a B&B and Wedding & Special Event Venue. I am solely responsible for decorating it as it looks today. This Victorian Décor is not for everyone’s taste and I understand and can appreciate that. However, the Victorian Décor, furniture and colors were researched in depth to recreate the atmosphere so visitors could step back in time. The furnishings are a combination of authentic antiques and well-made reproductions, all bought here in New Orleans. As I type this, I notice that our parlors have people visiting after breakfast and sitting in our parlor chairs and couches. They seem quite comfortable; otherwise I don’t think they would remain there.
I’m sorry that this traveler did not like the décor or sleep well in Napoleons Rendezvous. They did not mention any of this during their stay. One of the first things we ask our guest each morning is “How did you sleep”? We give them an opportunity to let us know if there is anything we can do for them. This traveler is one of the few who has not slept well here in over our 10 years in service. We can’t please everyone; however we do try our best to make our guests as comfortable as possible…if at all possible. . As for the night tables in this room, they are of French Design and hold a lamp, a clock radio, and can easily hold a glass of water, a book, reading glasses and a cell phone. Regarding the hot water, the water pressure, and shower/tub functions, they all work well in all bathrooms. That is provided the user is familiar with how to operate the hardware to switch from the tub to shower function, or from the wall mount shower to Jacuzzi tubs. There are some travelers that are not used to operating certain plumbing hardware, and it is up to the traveler to ask for staff assistance in operating or to immediately notify the staff if they have an issue or complaint. If we are not notified at the time of stay, then we cannot assist in resolving their issue. We are reported to be haunted here at Magnolia Mansion, however we are not known to be able to read minds…yet. As for the pedestal sink…it is fully described (photos too) as such on our website for that room, and/or other rooms that may have the same old fashioned sink. There is a 3 tiered brass amenities table in each bathroom for the purpose of putting grooming products /makeup, as well as hooks on the bathroom door for makeup travel bags. Regarding the bathroom lighting, there is a 5 light horizontal bar above the old fashion oval decorator mirror as well as a ceiling light. The magnified makeup mirror is attached to the wall next to the Oval Decorator Mirror over the sink (under the light bar), and has a hinged arm with witch to adjust for use.
Again, I’m disappointed that this Guest was so unhappy with their choice. Hopefully this review will help others to decide what is right for their travels when searching for a place to stay. Happy & safe travels to all.
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128 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (34)
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English first
Birmingham, Alabama
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 26, 2012

If you have ever driven past or toured a grand southern plantation house and wondered what it would be like to stay there, this is your chance! We had a wonderful stay (week)! This is very different and the mansion is just beautiful. The architecture is lovely and the furnishings are very period. I had breakfast one morning alone at the end of the long table in the sunny breakfast room and was imagining how amazing it must have been to have lived in this mansion when it was built!

Tim was so sweet and was just a treasure trove of history! It was very interesting to hear the stories! Breakfast was perfect, fruit, danish, granola bars--not too much. The location is perfect. There is a small grocery store across the street....Walgreen's just a five minute walk.

The rooms are quirky and fun. Sure was nice to stay in a place that is not so vanilla and the same! We got a free upgrade room. Free WIFI, no telephone. We had a min-fridge which was very convenient.

Tip: When Tim offers to help you with your luggage, take him up on it! There are no elevators ;)

Thanks for the hospitality!!

Room Tip: If you can't do a steep, winding (beautiful) staircase, ask for the first floor rooms.
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NewOrleansMsMagnolia, Owner at Magnolia Mansion, responded to this review, December 7, 2012
Thank you for choosing Magnolia Mansion for you stay in New Orleans. I'm thrilled that you enjoyed our location, complimentary Wi-Fi and Continental breakfast (just enough to get you through until you go to a JAZZ Brunch), the Mansion's decor and appreciated the architecture of the this historic property. The Guest rooms are meant to be quirky, each uniquely themed and yes... colorful. Thank you for mentioning the staircase and reminding travelers that we do not have an elevator. Many Small historic B&B's, Guest homes, and Inns don't have elevators. Travel tip... bring walking shoes, clothes to layer and pack light. Our Host will will always offer to assist Guests with their luggage and offer helpful tips about where to go and what to do in New Orleans. Take advantage of the knowledge and experience we have to offer you. Until next time...safe travels.
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St.Louis, MO
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
34 helpful votes 34 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 16, 2012

The inn is just beautiful and right off of St Charles street. Everything is larger than life with the 10 foot doors and all the decor...It is just lovely. We stayed in the Southern Comfort theme room and it was very quaint. The bedding was so comfy and cozy. I loved snuggling in every evening for a good nights sleep.
The wifi worked great in the room the entire trip. The host Tim was very nice and helpful, but did not bug you at all..Heck you would never even know he was there most of the time. He would leave in the evenings and you practically had the place to yourself..we hardly noticed anyone else around till closer too the weekend. I loved sitting on the big front porch sipping wine and watching the storms roll in. The breakfast is just bagels,pastry ect..But there is a nice little cafe just a block or so away called the Trolley stop cafe and it had wonderful breakfast. Before 8:30 during the week you could get the early bird special for $2.99..Great value and the sweet iced tea was the best. We spent 3 relaxing nights here..It was wonderful..The only down fall we had on this trip was the street care st charles stopped working after our first day...bummer..so you had too taxi, but or drive too Bourbon, French quarter..ect...

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NewOrleansMsMagnolia, Owner at Magnolia Mansion, responded to this review, November 26, 2012
Thank you for sharing your Magnolia Mansion experience with others. Thrilled that you were pleased with your Southern Comfort Room and bed, our Host, the Mansion décor, the nearby eateries (many nearby to choose from), our location, Wi-Fi and your privacy. Regarding the privacy of our Guests & feeling like you have the whole place to yourself and that is exactly what we want you to feel. Relaxed and peaceful. There is something magical about it. We do our best to be available for our Guests during the day and on call for emergencies at night. Sometimes we are not always working where we can be seen, however we are always here working somewhere on property, assisting a Guest, or on call. It is unfortunate that the St. Charles St. Car was under repair and renovation during your stay. The St. Car Repairs should be done throughout the city very soon. Our city is trying to get everything in tip top shape for Super Bowl this year, which is being held here in New Orleans. Normally, the Street Car is the best way to get around during the day, as one stops about every 15 minutes or so up until around 6pm. After that I suggest to our Guest they should take a cab after dark for convenience, comfort and safety. Until next visit…Safe Travels.
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Tulsa, Oklahoma
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 9, 2012

I'm a researcher, so when it came time to have my first (and only, hopefully) honeymoon, I looked for a long time for the best place. I loved Magnolia Mansion from the beginning, and I was very pleased with our stay there.

First, we loved the location. The Garden District was the best spot for us, because it was quiet, lovely and within walking distance of some great restaurants and boutiques. The Magnolia Mansion is literally a block away from the St. Charles Trolley line, which my husband and I took all over town. We literally only used our car once to go to dinner 10 or so blocks away.

Secondly, I loved how the Magnolia Mansion has been authentically restored and decorated. The other hotels & B & Bs I researched were generally cheaply decorated and fairly cliched. I'm a fan of historic architecture and antiques, and I found both throughout the Magnolia Mansion. Our room was decorated with actual period furniture and silks, which were stunning. Our bed was comfortable, our bathroom was luxurious, and we had a great view. The communal areas are as beautifully furnished, and the outdoor areas are lovely. There are many rules at the Magnolia Mansion (no kids, no red wine), which I was appreciative of - that's what keeps the place looking good, well furnished, and a good place for couples.

Tim, the manager, and Hollie, the owner, were lovely. They were very helpful but gave us plenty of privacy, which I appreciated. Hollie, especially, was very understanding about some snafus that forced us to postpone our wedding, and I'll recommend her B & B forever based on that alone.

Breakfast was plentiful, and the coffee was strong, which worked for us. Keep in mind, though, that breakfast is not hot, because B & Bs in New Orleans are precluded from serving hot breakfasts. There are plenty of places around that serve hot breakfast if you like. My husband and I were fine with the breakfast that was served and appreciated how early it was ready so we could enjoy the city.

Finally, I don't know how we missed that the B & B was reported to be haunted, but we did. The last night we were there, we both awoke to knocking (on a wall?) that lasted a good 20 minutes, that we could never find a source for. Also, the bathroom light was on, though neither of us left it that way. We didn't get a lot of sleep that night, but it's a great story to tell.

We hope to return to the Magnolia Mansion soon. I'd definitely recommend it to anyone. I wish Hollie the best.

Room Tip: We stayed in the Bordello Moulin Rouge which was a nice combination of authenticity and camp - we lo...
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  • Stayed December 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lancaster, PA
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 25, 2012

Sorry for the title, but it really annoys me when reviewers complain about something that's City ordinance. Even though New Orleans city law prohibits *ALL* B&Bs from serving a hot breakfast, Tim, the onsite manager, makes sure there is still plenty of coffee, teas, orange juice, fresh fruit, cold cereal, packaged pastries, even bread and bagels with a toaster and a microwave oven for instant hot cereals.

Likewise the comment about "draconian" rules. We appreciated the strict No Smoking policy, especially when you consider this property is on the Historic Register and literally irreplaceable, and that cigarette smell is difficult and expensive to get out of the carpet, draperies and bedding,

As for not having someone available 24/7, I found that a bit ridiculous. This is a private B&B with an onsite proprietor, not a hotel run in a private house.

Now for my own review: I can't imagine why anyone would rate Magnolia Mansion any less than a 5. Our stay was delightful in every way.

The mansion is very well kept considering it's over 150 years old. The downstairs (main floor) and our room were spotless both when we arrived and during our entire five day visit. The rooms are all decorated in period furniture and spacious. Do look at the photos on their website as the bedrooms all have a theme and may not appeal to everyone. We didn't choose Magnolia for this, but it didn't bother us, either. Our (private) bathroom was both modern and enormous in comparison to the average hotel - or even B&B - bathroom. That was both a surprise and a treat.

This is a strictly adults-only B&B, and we appreciated the peace and quiet this offers. It made our stay as restful and relaxed as we hoped it would be. In fact, even though Magnolia was fully booked, you'd never know it. All the guests were very quiet and respectful of others, and we never once heard loud voices or a blaring TV - nice!

It's in a great location, just a block away from the St. Charles streetcar, which made getting around easy and inexpensive. The only time we used a cab was when I was wearing 4" heels to dinner.

Tim is as accommodating, helpful, knowledgeable, friendly and professional as anyone could wish for; he's a real asset to Magnolia. Even though hours are officially 8am-5pm, we invariably saw him in his office when we came in around 9 or 10, waiting for his guests to return (I imagine this was just in case someone forgot their key.) He lives onsite, so there's never any worry about someone being available for an emergency. Tim is also very well-versed in the history of the house, if you're interested.

There are ghosts (I saw one and heard two others), but they don't disturb anyone and aren't frightening at all. If you're a ghost hunter, you'd probably be disappointed at the marginal activity.

Room Tip: Look at the pictures on their website before booking.
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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NewOrleansMsMagnolia, Owner at Magnolia Mansion, responded to this review, June 2, 2012
Tim & I want to thank you for posting such an informative detailed overall review for travelers to consider when making a choice of where to stay. Thank you for posting this for future travelers. Just for the record...I too recognize and appreciate that Tim is a great asset to Magnolia Mansion. He really knows this city, and is great at arranging tours & restaurant reservations etc for everyone who is interested, & is very accommodating to our guests.

To be very clear, in regards to cities restrictions of serving a Hot Breakfast, we do not have a restaurant at Magnolia Mansion and we do not have a restaurant licence to serve a hot breakfast. Therefore we are limited to serving a Continental Breakfast (with a choice of 2 hot egg, cheese & sausage prepackaged microwaveable breakfast sandwiches). I intentionally did not to even want to attempt to try to compete with all of the amazing restaurants to choose from in this city.

Most people save their calorie intake and room in their tummies for the gourmet meals served up by the great chiefs here in New Orleans. Also, we do leave complimentary snacks out 24/7, as well as fresh filtered water available to refill every one's water bottles when desired. An Ice Bucket is put out daily in the dinning room by the water each afternoon prior to closing the office. During the day, should someone want or need ice, all they have to do is ask us...we are here.

We are thrilled that your stay was delightful in every way. Magnolia Mansion apparently was the right choice for your stay here in New Orleans. I'm glad that you mentioned the themed rooms. I also suggest that all travelers review each room's description and look at the photographs, which are available on our website. I designed each room to have it's own unique theme, so travelers would not feel they are in just another hotel room. I want people to feel as if they have stepped back in time. Each room reflects something original to New Orleans & the south. Different rooms appeal to different tastes. I am also pleased that you appreciated our non smoking, privacy, and other policies. These policies are in place to protect every one's safety as well as this historic property. Many of our guests ask for a copy of our policies to give to their friend and families for when they stay at their home (our policies are available on our website as well). Most of our policies ask people to apply common courtesy and common sense. Again, If you are looking for party central...this is not the place for you. So be very aware of this, unless you have actually rented this property as an event venue, separately from the guest rooms, this is not for you. Magnolia Mansion is known for being a wonderful place to relax and get a wonderful nights sleep, and is not for every one's needs...so travelers please do your homework.

You are absolutely correct regarding the fact that someone is always on property and available to assist during the day when asked, or overnight in case of an emergency. Even if the office is closed or if it is after hours, someone is here

on property. We can always be reached on the emergency cell number provided to each guest for the day of their arrival, it is also given to them again at check in, as well as posted in each of their rooms, and also in the dining room by the phone. If someone needs anything at any time (that can not wait till morning), we can be reached on this emergency cell phone to assist them in some way, if at all possible. So again, thank you for recognizing the difference between doing business as a small private B&B/Boutique Hotel as oppose to a the operations of running a standard Hotel. Many large Hotels are open to the public 24/7, however more & more are changing their staffing hours & check in restrictions.

I am personally happy that you found Magnolia Mansion to be quiet & peaceful throughout your stay. This was one of the reasons I choose to make this an adults-only Boutique Hotel/B&B. It is because I wanted it attract those seeking a quiet romantic getaway. Also because, many of my friends who have kids, have mentioned on different occasions, they too need a weekend of solitude away from all the noise & chaos created by their own children, as well as a break from other people's children. As far as your sightings of our spirited guests that never check out...our resident ghosts, congratulations. They have always been friendly, however some are a little mischievous, and only make their presence known to those they wish to. I'm happy to hear you had a Hauntingly Peaceful & enjoyable stay. We hope you come back to visit us very soon. Wishing you Safe & Happy Travels!
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Nashville, TN
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 22, 2012

I loved my stay here. The room was beautiful and the hotel was beautiful. Both had lavish decor. I went with my dad when we saw my brother's graduation. I had a great experience and would recommend it to couples or friends.

They do have a strict age limit (no children), all guests must be registered, and there are several other rules. If you read the rules beforehand and think you can follow them, then this is the place for you. Some people find the rules to be off-putting or draconian, but they are outlined clearly, and if you do not like them, you can stay elsewhere.

My only gripe is that the breakfast was not very diverse in it's offerings. I like eggs and biscuits, and expected more from an upscale place than granola bars, fruit, limited pastries, and oatmeal.

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NewOrleansMsMagnolia, Owner at Magnolia Mansion, responded to this review, May 31, 2012
Thank you so much for taking the time to share your experience with others. We are thrilled you & your Dad enjoyed your stay. Thank you for pointing out that people should read the policies prior to booking. I have them posted on line for people to do just this so they can make the best choice on where to stay. Many people stay here because of our policies. We have many guests who have told us that they love the fact that only registered guest are allowed on this property so they are not disturbed and they feel safe. If a guest would like to have someone stop by & visit them during the day, while the office is open and this has been discussed and previously arranged with the Host, we do our best to accommodate them if at all possible. However, when and only when pre- arranged in advance, can any unregistered guests come on property and they are only allowed in the common areas (parlors, Veranda), and unregistered guests are never allowed in the guestrooms, so as not to disturb our other guests. To many, the obvious reason we have these policies in place for our property, is to insure the safety & privacy that many of our guest are seeking. Magnolia Mansion was designed to appeal to those seeking a romantic & peaceful environment. Many couples who have children, come to here (or a place like this) to get away from their children & have some quiet time to fall in love all over again. This is where you come to get engaged, or celebrate an anniversary, a honeymoon or just for a romantic get away. Regarding the breakfast. I also suggest they read research this, as our menu is our website & posted in other reviews, such as this one. Just a reminder to readers, we are within walking distance to many great cafes & restaurants, however, Magnolia Mansion does not have a restaurant on site. Our breakfast menu is more extensive than was explained in this review. So just to be clear for all of the TripAdvisor readers, so they know in advance, I will list a detailed description of each & every item offered is as follows. We offer the same self serve enhanced Complimentary Continental Breakfast each morning of your stay between 8:30am & 10:30am. This consistent menu offers the following: A Choice of…Coffee, A Selection of Hot Teas, Low Fat Milk, Orange Juice, Fresh Fruit (Apples, Oranges, Banana’s), Assorted WrappedPastries (a choice of a Cheese Danish, Cinnamon Rolls, Chocolate Hazel Biscottie), Assorted Wrapped Breakfast Bars ( Apple, Strawberry, & Blueberry Nutri Grain Bars, Quaker Multi Flavored Granola Bars) , Assorted Packaged Instant Oatmeal, Three Types of Cereal (Raisin Bran, Honey Oats, Cheerios), & Assorted Bagels & English Muffins ( 3 types of breads- plain, wheat & blueberry). Also available upon request, are a choice of two Hot Grab & Go Breakfast Sandwiches. The choice is either an Egg, Cheese, & Sausage on Croissant, or an Egg Whites (only), Cheese & Turkey Sausage on a Wheat English Muffin. However, be aware that you must ask to have one made for you, as it says on the Menu placed on the Breakfast table 24/7. I love my eggs & biscuits as much as this traveler does, and I have found this Breakfast Sandwich to be very satisfying to not only myself, but also our guests. It gives them just enough to hold their appetite at bay until they get to their favorite restaurant for lunch or Brunch. We do hope you & your father come back to stay with us & enjoy what you did enjoy & love about Magnolia Mansion. Happy Traveling to you, until we see you again.
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San Francisco, California, United States
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed May 18, 2012

First the pros: the setting is wonderful, right in the heart of the Garden District. The communal spaces of the hotel, inner rooms and patio, are quite beautiful, I can see why it is a popular place to have weddings.

Just don't plan to spend your honeymoon here.

The cons: I came hoping to experience some southern hospitality. Instead, our very first interaction involved being required to pay $50, in cash, because the late arrival of our plane brought us in later than the proprietors' bedtime. Sorry to interrupt your beauty sleep, but aren't you running a hotel? Nothing like a little graft to get my 2nd anniversary vacation off on to a good start. Upon leaving, a friend was taking over our room and she was treated very rudely and wasn't allowed into the hotel, and I have yet to receive an explanation for her poor treatment.

That this place bills itself a bed and breakfast is an insult to the word breakfast. Your stay includes the same "breakfast" supplied at your typical Super 8: toast with little plastic packets of jelly, bagels with foil packets of cream cheese, unpeeled fruit. I can understand that not every bed and breakfast can make homemade pastries, but if you must buy them from the corner 7-11, at least take them out of the plastic wrapper and put them on a serving tray and pretend that you care. The low quality food and complete lack of class is quite a contrast to the surroundings of the hotel.

At least while you're staying there you can borrow from and enjoy their fine selection of VHS tapes to watch in your dimly lit room. I'll be returning to New Orleans for a week in November, but I will never return to the Magnolia Mansion.

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NewOrleansMsMagnolia, Owner at Magnolia Mansion, responded to this review, May 31, 2012
We want to thank you for posting this review on behalf of you & your traveling companion. I’m glad that the area and the communal spaces were appreciated, as it is a great location for travelers, as well as a beautiful venue for weddings and receptions. However, there are many Honeymoon couples who have stayed at Magnolia Mansion may seriously disagree with his Honeymoon comment based on their personal experience.

Tim remembers this couple very well and made notes in their reservations due to several uncomfortable issues that he experienced with them on several encounters, as they arrived to check in at 2am in the morning. The next morning Tim made tour reservations for them to do a city tour. They were very business & not very talkative or pleasant to Tim during this process.

These reservations through an online 3rd party popular reservation site, as many people do in today’s online world. We always contact the reservation system that each guest books through to request all of their contact information, so that we can get in touch with them to send them an email & call them prior to their arrival to confirm that all is in order, their arrival time, also that they have no children or pets, as all of our guests must be 21 years or older, and to see if they are celebrating anything special. Sometimes, we do not receive this information from the 3rd party reservation source until the day of the guest arrival…and then it’s too late to contact them as they are in transit. Sometimes, we never receive the information at all. It is the traveler’s responsibility to contact the property they have chosen and personally confirm all details of their reservation, stay & desired information.

My advice to everyone who also books anything online is the following! Always, always, always visit the property’s official website and do your homework, read their policies and restrictions to see if this is the right choice for you personally. In addition to this, call and contact the property directly (Bed & Breakfast, Inn, Motel or Hotel) and to let them know if you are celebrating something special, give them the cell number you are traveling with, confirm their Check In & Check Out times (arrange prior should you need an early or late Check In) and confirm details of anything that is really important to you as a traveler and guest. All Bed & Breakfasts, Inns, Motels or Hotels have different policies and this is their right to do so. Smaller B&B’s & Inn’s, as well as larger Hotels, have Check In Restrictions. This is not unusual at all, neither is the age restriction, all properties have their reasons for doing this. Magnolia Mansion has our hours of office operation & check in policies posted very clearly on our website.

Magnolia Mansion is not for everyone, as it is a unique Historic property and is for those 21 years or older that are looking for a hauntingly romantic, private and peaceful experience. Our Check In time is between 2pm & 6:30pm. We arrange early Check Ins without any additional fees or costs, provided we have been contacted and have been properly informed, in order to have their room & paperwork ready upon their arrival. If a room is not ready for Check In yet, then we gladly hold luggage, and give the earliest possible time for Guest’s to return and get settled. We always suggest a nearby eatery for them to wait & enjoy themselves or, if they prefer just go for a nice walk through the Garden District or on a walking tour, or they can sit and wait in parlors and read through coffee table books provided.

However, all arrivals after 6:30pm are subject to a $25 cash late fee (per reservation) upon Check In, and special arrangements must be made in advance. Also, all arrivals after 10pm are subject to a $50 cash late Check In fee. Magnolia Mansion has these policies in place for several reasons. Because we are a small property and operate with a very small staff, we do not have 24/7 office/front desk hours and we are up very early each day to set out the complimentary Continental Breakfast (I will address this further on), as clearly shown on our website.

Also, Magnolia Mansion maintains a very peaceful quiet and romantic atmosphere and late arrivals can sometimes be very disruptive, as some folks like to go to Bourbon St. and celebrate their arrival into the Big Easy, if you know what I mean… before Checking In. It is best always Check In before you start toasting the night away.

The last reason is a safety issue. Many B&B’s, Inn’s, Motels, & even some Hotels, have limited Check In times. Some will not allow anyone to Check In after 7pm or 8pm period. This policy is becoming more popular with hospitality properties around the country, due to crime and staffing cutbacks. Many Hotels & other accommodations in Palm Springs, for example, and other cities that have smaller properties have started this policy. I know, because I’ve stayed at some several times. I always like to see what someone else is doing that I may or may not consider implementing as a procedure or policy at Magnolia Mansion. Also, be aware that some accommodation properties will not hold your reservation after a certain time, if you have not checked in by then. You could show up & they may have given your room to someone else because you were considered a “No Show”. So again, do your homework and take personal responsibility for contacting & confirming details directly with the property of your choice. Make sure your reservation in order and you have are completely informed of all of the properties policies, & give them your cell phone to contact you if needed, etc.

Now as far as the comment about their friend, which was …“Upon leaving, a friend was taking over our room and she was treated very rudely and wasn't allowed into the hotel, and I have yet to receive an explanation for her poor treatment.”

This will be a very detailed explanation that will hopefully answer his question as well as educate others. First of all this couple checked in on a Friday and the gentleman left on Sunday, while the lady remained. Over the weekend that they were both here, neither of them mentioned anything about him leaving or a friend arriving to stay here, at any time. It was only when this couple was rushing out the door on Sunday to take him to the Airport, that the woman informs Tim that she would be having a friend come and stay with her. Our guests did not give him the name of her friend, nor a time we were to expect her, nor a contact number to reach her friend. Because our Guest was aware of our Check In procedures and other Mansion Policies, it sounded to Tim and as he understood it, our Guest would be personally be bringing the friend back with her, so she could Check In and sign all of the required registration paperwork.

As it turned out, this was a clear lack of communication between Tim and our Guest, and therefore it lead to an uncomfortable situation for all concerned. The friend of our Guest arrived after 6:30 pm on a Sunday (By the way, Tim did not ask for nor collect the $25 late fee from the friend). Because her friends name was not given to us by our Guest, and she was not on the property at her friends time of arrival, nor had our Guests notified her 3rd party reservation source that we were to expect another guest under her reservation details, by law and our agreements with the 3rd party reservation party and our understanding of this, we are not allowed to give a key to someone’s room or let them check in.

When the friend of our Guest arrived, she was very tired. Tim invited her in to sit down. She chose to wait in the parlors and common areas until our (registered) Guest could be reached by phone, which took approximately an hour. Once this was done she was properly Checked In and given a Key. She was very nice and was not treated rudely by Tim in any way. Tim simply could not give her a key to a room that was not in her registered in her name. Due to the fact that we never received any documentation in writing from our registered Guest nor from the source of her original reservation. Upon Check Out, Tim held the bags for the ladies while they went out walking around. They later came back to Magnolia Mansion to pick up their bags. Tim carried their luggage down to the Taxi Cab and both Ladies headed off to the airport. Upon departure, the friend of our Guest was very nice to Tim. However, the original Guest remained very businesslike and extremely distant.

As for our infamous Continental Breakfast…again, this information is on detailed on our website & one of the things we have been heavily criticized for previously, in some online reviews. We are not known for having a fabulous Breakfast. It is however, a substantial Self-Serve Complimentary Continental Breakfast served between 8:30am & 10:30am consisting of the following: A Choice of…Coffee, A Selection of Hot Teas, Low Fat Milk, Orange Juice, Fresh Fruit (Apples, Oranges, Banana’s), Assorted Wrapped Pastries, Assorted Wrapped Breakfast Bars, Assorted Packaged Oatmeal, Three Types of Cereal, Assorted Bagels & English Muffins ( 3 types of breads) & also available upon request are Hot Jimmy Dean Breakfast Grab & Go Sandwiches (2 choices). Either an Egg, Cheese, & Sausage on Croissant, or an Egg Whites (only), Cheese & Turkey Sausage on a Wheat English Muffin.

Now, having described in detail our Breakfast selections and to be very clear, we do not run down to a convenience store to buy our wrapped pastry! I go to Sam’s & buy in bulk like most small businesses. The pastries are to remain wrapped (as are the jellies, butter, & cream cheese), as this is required by our health department (as in most cities), when self-serve meals are provided, as we are not a restaurant and do not have a restaurant license. Again, this is a health and safety issue (& just common sense). If breakfast is high on your list for what you want included in your traveling experience, then I suggest a standard hotel with a restaurant license or a Bed & Breakfast that is highly praised for their full hot breakfast. We all have different priorities when choosing a place to stay. So, if you want your fruit peeled for you, your cream cheese placed on a plate for you & pastries fresh from the oven…then Magnolia Mansion is not for you. At least you know your fruit is fresh when you peel it yourself…Just a thought!

If these travelers had researched this property, and what we provide and are known & not known for, and had they read all of the information that is provided in so many areas on line for them to see. They would have known this and made another choice regarding accommodations.

NOTE: Another reason we don’t provide full hot breakfast, is that most people come to town to go to New Orleans gourmet restaurants for a Jazz Brunch, Lunch or Dinner. They stay out late, sleep in & only want a little something to lite to eat to hold them over till they get to their restaurant of choice. Most people are out late at night having a good time & like a good quiet night’s sleep so they can go on tours & have fun eating & playing through this wonderful city called New Orleans

Magnolia Mansion is appreciated for its beautiful ambiance, privacy, tranquil & romantic atmosphere, great location and historic architecture. Not so much, because our Continental Breakfast! I hope this helps others make a better choice, when considering their stay somewhere, so they will make a choice that is just the right experience for them. Safe & Happy Traveling to All!!!
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Additional Information about Magnolia Mansion

Address: 2127 Prytania Street, New Orleans, LA 70130
Location: United States > Louisiana > New Orleans
Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking
Hotel Style:
Ranked #81 of 144 B&Bs / Inns in New Orleans
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Magnolia Mansion 3*
Number of rooms: 15
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Adults Only-21 Years or Children 12 Years Old and up -No Children under 12 years old/No Pets. Known for Peaceful Leisure Travel and Romantic Getaways, Elopement Packages, Business Travelers, and those seeking a quiet stay in a historic property (built 1858). We are centrally located in the Garden District, just steps from the Saint Charles Street Car, Mardi Gras Parade Routes, and only minutes from the Superdome, F.Q., Convention Center, Restaurants, and most major attractions. Non-Smoking property, however smoking is allowed outside in a designated area on our wrap around Veranda. Magnolia Mansion is 14,000 Sq. Ft. And the Courtyards and Grounds are Gated and Locked. Only Registered Guests are allowed on Property at All Times, Unless Approved by Management or Owner in Advance. Office hours are 9am-4pm CST Monday-Friday / Saturday - Sunday 9am-2pm CST. Check- In Time- 2:00pm - 6:00pm CST. All Guests Requiring Early or Late Arrivals Must Call Magnolia Mansion Directly to Notify and Arrange Prior to Arrival Date, as Special Arrangements Must Be Made in Order to Accommodate this Request. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Magnolia Mansion Hotel New Orleans

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