The first night we jumped (splashed) right into the thick of the activites by joining the festive throngs for the rollicking Royal Street Stroll. It is described as a “unique NOWFE event that brings together New Orleans’ greatest gifts: rare antiques, fine art, live jazz and stunning historic architecture with the world’s outstanding wines. Shop the enchanting galleries of Royal Street while experiencing wine and food offerings at each stop.”
What they didn’t include in the write-up, but they hinted at in the fine print which I completely missed, was In the event of inclement weather, the event will still be held. Rain ponchos will be distributed if necessary.
Our level of “inclement weather” conisisted of torrential downpours and record thunderstorms, which our little rain poncho’s were certainly no match for. Actually, since it was warm rain, this really just added to the crazy fun, as people rolled up their pant legs and jumped in the puddles, while sipping some superb-wines, and nibbling on some delish BBQ oysters, gumbo, and mini-Mufletta while eye-balling some great works of art.
Thankfully, we were staying just a puddle-jump away, so before we “caught our death of cold” we swam over to our room at the wonderful Hotel Monteleone.
LOVED it! Perfect choice as headquarters for the NOWFE event– I would definitely stay here next year. This historic family owned and operated hotel, with it’s elegant Old World facade located in the French Quarter, has played host to numerous celebs since it opened in 1886. Granted the lobby carpet was a trifle threadbare, but I’ll take a little faded elegance over generic Big-Box Chain hotels anyday.
Plus I think it has the best location: right on Royal street, which offers the best upscale shopping, and just minutes away from all the action but still far enough to avoid the racuous noise of Bourbon St. Being able to take in some sun at the outdoor pool or work-out in the small but efficient fitness room, more than made up for the lack of river-view from our “river view” suite.
It’s been a while since I’ve stayed at a hotel that didn’t advertise how wonderful their “sleep system” was, but i have to admit-this was one of the most comfy beds I’ve ever slept on. Three nights of perfect sleep is a thing of beauty, or at least worth 3 stars!