The Renaissance Arts Hotel is one of those rare gems I look for whenever I travel. The hotel’s tastefully appointed rooms are complimented by a feast for the eyes lobby which is liberally decorated with static and kinetic sculptures, photo prints and one of a kind art everywhere you look. The whole effect is that the Renaissance paints an ambiance that provides for large assemblies, but still offers quiet nooks to sit for more intimate moments.
The rooms are fully equipped with quality boutique shampoos, conditioners, creams & gels. Unfortunately, they provide the single cup coffee brewers (not big enough for me) but thankfully, they do have great coffee. The Renaissance is after all, a Marriott property, and I can never say anything bad about the beds in those hotels. I’m asleep 30 seconds after hitting one of those super-plush pillows. My biggest kudo goes to Manager Frank Zumbo’s upgrade of the hotel internet system. I don’t know what they’re running for hardware, but I wish I had it at my office. Their internet is blazing fast, enabling me to video conference from my room without any of the usual connection speed problems. The room also has a 32” flat screen TV (great reception) and an alarm clock that doesn’t take a PHD to program.
The hotel offers valet parking (exclusively) which is comparable to most of New Orleans’ better hotels. I was greeted by a very professional team of parking valets headed up by Kenny. These gentlemen truly respect the fact that they are the customer’s first contact with the hotel and make sure that it is a positive experience making me feel very welcome here.
While there are probably several bellmen, the luck of the draw gave me Corey (and later Ronald) both of whom are at the top of their game. It’s a delicate balance to keep with long term guests such as myself. As a guest, you want a level of respect and courtesy, but you also want warmth and a sense of being part of the hotel “family”. Both Corey and Ronald skate along that fine line with remarkable skill.
As a frequent traveler, I sometimes encounter the inevitable trainee behind the front desk. Not so at the Renaissance. Everyone I’ve dealt with greets me by name and each has been able to promptly address whatever question I put forth… (sigh) very nice! The folks that stand behind that desk are amazing. If you’re lucky enough to be served by Dominique, or Sybil, Sidra, Thereza, or Britannee, you’ll know what I mean. But really, literally everyone behind that desk is worth their weight in gold.
The fifth floor houses the hotel pool and exercise area, with the Marriot Rewards Member Lounge on the 4th. The lounge is very comfortable, well attended, and offers a quick breakfast and light dinner/desserts Sunday nights through Friday mornings. During the off-hours, or for more robust dining, I heartily recommend the Rene Bistrot’ restaurant which also provides room service. Try the oysters, they offer a unique and varied selection. I must admit, while they have a very enticing dinner menu, my favorites are their breakfasts. Give me their Lox & Cream Cheese on a bagel (although they don’t refer to it that way) or their buffet which includes these absolutely fantastic sausages and Papa Tom’s Stone Ground Corn Grits. I know, there are many people who say they absolutely hate grits. (But they haven’t tried these! They are marvelous!) Even if you order the buffet, the wait staff will always offer to have the chef cook up something fresh and I’d suggest you let him do so. Great omelets! Oh, and I really should mention, they have a great bar, too.
The Renaissance is conveniently located in the Warehouse District, just a couple of blocks from downtown New Orleans and all the action there. It’s close enough to walk, or as I prefer, take a pedi-cab over to Harrah’s, Jackson Square, or Riverwalk. But far enough off the beaten path that you aren’t kept awake all night by sirens and such which are so typical of NOLA nightlife. For a little informal variety, I’d recommend Lucy’s which is just across the street from the hotel. (Great food and Ice-cold beer!) But really, it’s NEW ORLEANS! I’ve been in and out of here for the last 5 years and I still haven’t sampled all the great food that’s here!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- A historic setting, contemporary style, and a unbeatable location near New Orleans' French Quarter and in the heart of the trendy food mecca of the Warehouse District: all of this and more elevates the Renaissance New Orleans Arts Hotel to an unforgettable New Orleans experience. Our building is a former warehouse, dating from the early 20th century; we've preserved a sense of old-world elegance in our surroundings, while simultaneously infusing a thoroughly contemporary sense of convenience and art. Please note that our restaurant is currently undergoing renovations and we look forward to unveiling a stunning new restaurant to our guests in early 2015. For now, we recommend that our guests enjoy the many amazing New Orleans dining experiences within a short walking distance of our front doors, such as Cochon, Emeril's, Root, Tommy's Bistro, and many more. Our Navigators will be delighted to help you discover the best possible cuisine during your stay in New Orleans. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Renaissance New Orleans
- New Orleans Renaissance