I just got back from my first trip to New Orleans a few days ago and have been chomping at the bit to write this review of the beautiful and charming Prytania Oaks Hotel. Not to sound like a broken record (since everyone seems to use this word to describe the place), but what a GEM! Seriously... it is beautiful and charming. So, here's the scoop:
We were in Room 267 and had a balcony view overlooking Prytania Street. The moment we walked in the room, I was all ooo's and ahhhh's! There were beautiful hardwood floors, a queen-sized four poster bed, a desk, mini-fridge, microwave, coffee maker, an armoire, a mounted flatscreen tv, HUGE vaulted ceilings (at least 12 feet high), and two sets of the most gorgeous french doors leading out to a lovely balcony just outside of the room overlooking the street. The bathroom was beautiful, even down to the detail they put into framing out the sink with some lovely crown. Very nice. I will admit that the room would have been cramped if we had giant luggage (no place other than the skinny armoire to store suitcases or spread out, but we only had our small weekend bags, so we kept them on the desk and in the nice sized foyer by the door. The space was absolutely perfect for what we needed and was really clean and classy. It felt like a real treat to have the pleasure to stay there.
The bed was comfortable and the pillows were fine, though I have to admit... I am partial to feather pillows and was a little disappointed that this amazing room did not have them. Oh well. Out of fairness, I did not ask if they had any feather pillows because the pillows were comfortable enough that it wasn't a big deal. The shower was wonderful! I loved the heavy water pressure (it was heavenly and I kept raving about it!) but, apparently, I spent a little too long enjoying my shower bc my husband said the temp never really got hot enough for his liking (which wasn't my experience at all). The next day I took a more responsible shower (wasn't in there for an eternity-- ha!) and hubby said the temperature was perfect, so I really think it was my fault that first day. The thermostat kept the temperature just perfect for us and there was a ceiling fan should we have needed it (though we didn't since there was a cold front those two nights). The comforter looks thin but kept us plenty warm and very comfy.
We were in love with the black-out curtains they had in the room, which kept it nice and dark for a restful night's sleep. As for noise, while I am a super heavy sleeper, my husband is not and did mention that he could hear people walking up/down the stairwell late at night and dragging their luggage down the stairs first thing in the morning. He could also hear the street noise whenever a car drove by, but not so much so that any of this made it difficult for him to sleep, which was good. I would recommend that light sleepers not request a street view though because there would be a higher chance of any noise distracting you. Again, as a heavy sleeper, I slept like a baby so it was perfect to me. :-)
The Prytania Park Hotel (sister property) is just across the street, caddy corner from the Prytania Oaks and is where you check in. The staff was great! Dana, in particular, took a lot of time with me to provide restaurant suggestions and such-- she was fantastic and so, so helpful (thanks, Dana!). We parked our car in the free (and well-lit) parking lot over by the main office, which seemed preferable to parking in one of the only five or six spots that are adjacent to the Prytania Oaks building. And the location of the hotel to the hot spots of New Orleans was excellent-- 1.7 miles from the French Quarter (which we walked-- only took about 35-4o minutes on foot and it provided a beautiful stroll through lovely old homes, pretty parks, and even some of the downtown skyscrapers-- great diversity!
The hotel is situated in the Garden District and is conveniently just one-two blocks from the St Charles trolley (a $3 per person ticket for a full day of unlimited rides on the city trolleys/buses). While we opted to just explore on foot, it was nice knowing the trolley was there as a back-up plan and it was fun to see it passing through the city. :-) There are lots of great food options on St Charles Street, so the fact that we were so close by to that major thoroughfare was a major plus during our stay!
A continental breakfast is served from 7:30-9:00 (or was it 7:00am?-- anyway, you get the idea) and had cereal, danishes, and a waffle maker, plus juice, milk, and coffee. Pretty simple, but plenty. :-) While we were there, they served breakfast at Prytania Oaks but sometimes serve it at the Prytania Park lobby-- they tell you at check-in where you can expect it to be each day on your stay.
If you have a car while in New Orleans and are able to explore more than just the French Quarter, take a drive down to the end of St. Charles and Magazine Streets in the Garden District area. The houses there are out of this world! Also, Metairie Cemetery is something to behold (wow!) and seeing Lake Pontchartrain just a few miles north of the city on Lakeshore Drive is worth the 18 minutes or so that it takes to get up there. It is so close by and is worth checking out at sunset if you have the benefit of having a car while there-- lovely! I loved exploring the streets of the French Quarter (the street performers are a hoot!) but have to admit that the 45 minute wait we had at Cafe Du Monde to get their world famous beignets (power-sugared covered donut treats) was a let-down. I still recommend you have a beignet while there though-- it is just a NOLA thing that you would not want to miss out on and, were it not for the long wait, I probably would have LOVED it! Just try to go later in the afternoon... after 4pm maybe... because the crowds just make the lines ridiculous any earlier in the day.
Check out the pictures entitled Room 267 to see our room.
I hope this review was helpful and that you have a GREAT time on your trip to New Orleans. Don't hesitate to book this hotel-- you'll love it!!!
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