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Offering up a little something for everyone, New Orleans appeals to foodies, architecture aficionados, music lovers, party-people, and history buffs, making it a top destination year-round. We recently experienced two New Orleans hotels that offer distinctly stylish experiences — though both are walkable to the French Quarter (and each other). One is new and trendy, boasting a colorful, eclectic design. The other is an older, more established hotel characterized by its old-South elegance. Both are fabulous!

Two Stylish New Orleans Hotels for Your Next Visit

Virgin Hotels New Orleans

550 Baronne St., New Orleans, LA 70113 • (833) 791-7700

New to the Warehouse District and New Orleans as of fall 2021, the lively Virgin Hotel brand is a fantastic choice for a bachelorette weekend, honeymoon stop, or girls’ getaway with an artsy spin. Cocktails on the rooftop bar, a knowledgeable barista just off the lobby, and colorful artwork everywhere capture the youthful energy of New Orleans itself.

The hotel brought in local interior design firm Logan Killen Interiors to layer a NOLA vibe and history onto the Virgin style. Art Deco influences and wood-paneled walls merge with cheeky art and modern furnishings. The lobby is a shock of pink, with an Instagram-worthy floor of brass and glass tiles to give you a taste of what’s in store as you move past the entry spaces. The “Funny Library” gets its name from the unusual mix of art (a realistic-looking man in a bunny suit garners his fair share of attention!).

Also, on the first floor, the all-purpose common room is a combo of lobby, lounge, and coffee bar to fit our multi-purpose lives. Other common areas include a two-story bar, Commons Club restaurant, and “The Shag Room” (also utilized for private parties). The penthouse level is where a preppy pool area and rooftop bar keep locals and out-of-towners alike coming back for a fantastic view of the city.

RELATED: A First-Timer’s Guide to New Orleans: Where to Stay, Eat & Play

Pink lobby in Virgin Hotel in New Orleans, LA

The Virgin Hotel lobby sets the tone for the hotel’s quirky, Euro-style look. The arched doorways reference architectural features seen all over New Orleans. Image: Virgin Hotels New Orleans

"Funny Library" room at Virgin Hotels New Orleans

Colorful art and eclectic furnishings are standout features in the Virgin Hotels New Orleans’ “Funny Library,” an all-day room with a coffee bar, communal red table, comfortable places to sit, and conversation-starting decor. By the way, the guy in the corner — the one in the bunny suit — he’s a sculpture. And yes, that’s David Bowie in the framed black-and-white portrait. Local books and artists are part of the charm of the space! Image: Virgin Hotels New Orleans

Squash soup from The Commons Club at Virgin Hotels New Orleans

Meals at the Virgin Hotel’s Commons Club pay homage to the city’s culinary history, with specialties such as chicken confit, Gulf fish, mushroom fritters, and the delicious squash soup that’s pictured here. Image: Virgin Hotels New Orleans

Rooftop lounge overlooking New Orleans, LA

The rooftop lounge at Virgin Hotels New Orleans has specialty drinks and a panoramic view of the city. Image: Virgin Hotels New Orleans

Rooftop pool at night at Virgin Hotels New Orleans

The hotel’s rooftop pool features the trademark “Virgin Red” as a design motif, along with an undeniably “big city” vibe. Image: Virgin Hotels New Orleans

Rooms and suites are equally well-thought-out. All rooms have a separate makeup vanity/desk and closets for two, with upscale touches such as Deco-style marble and French wallpaper. This mix of traditional and contemporary is a signature Virgin motif, also seen in the beds. Red textured beds and seating areas have unique features like bullion fringe and built-in SMEG refrigerators.

Hotel guest room with orange retro furniture

Cleverly designed guest rooms make the most of every inch of space, with built-in chairs as part of the upholstered bed and a retro-looking mini-fridge. Image: Virgin Hotels New Orleans

Windsor Court Hotel

300 Gravier St., New Orleans, LA 70130 • (800) 262-2662

If old-world luxury and elegance are more your speed, look to the Windsor Court Hotel. A few blocks from the French Quarter, this four-star mainstay channels a proper British vibe (afternoon tea and even an architectural model of namesake Windsor Castle grace the lobby). Its antiques and artwork — estimated to be worth millions of dollars — make it a lovely place to visit for a weekend with your Mom, an anniversary celebration, or a group couples’ trip. Street-side jazz bands at Jackson Square and French Market eateries are both close by, but how nice is it to know the quiet Windsor Court awaits you after exploring the busy streets?

Hotel lobby table with pink roses

Guests love the familiar greeting of fresh roses in the Windsor Court’s lobby, just one of many welcoming sights. Image: Windsor Court Hotel

Afternoon tea room at Windsor Court Hotel

Afternoon tea at the Windsor Court Hotel, served from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., is a longstanding tradition worth the splurge. You can currently enjoy the tea on weekends, but weekdays may be an option soon! Image: Windsor Court Hotel

Built in the 1980s, the hotel feels like it’s from an earlier era. Numerous renovations have kept it updated, such as upholstered headboards with built-in lighting, fresh carpet, and other new furnishings. However, it still boasts murals and oil paintings from earlier days.

At 23 stories, there’s a lot to enjoy at Windsor Court. The spa is a favorite spot for visitors, as is the pool. Restaurants and lounges are spacious and full of special touches. The Polo Lounge, with its leather seating and dark-wood walls, feels like an upscale English pub, and on weekends it becomes a popular spot for jazz. The Grill Room is fine dining with a New Orleans twist, ideal for a special dinner. Afternoon tea in Le Salon is a must — it’s a swanky lobby bar and lounge area where you’ll enjoy mimosas, English teas, special sandwiches, and scones, all with a background of music and the pleasant buzz of people coming and going through the front door.

RELATED: 3 Cajun Shrimp Recipes for Mardi Gras Season

Soft color palette of hotel guest room

The soft color palette of blues and cream is part of the relaxing charm at Windsor Court, with magnificent views out the window and spacious guest bedrooms. Image: Windsor Court Hotel

The Polo Lounge at Windsor Court Hotel

The Polo Lounge is popular with locals and non-guests of the hotel (don’t be surprised if you see a celebrity or two), with its British pub feeling and well-known bar program. Image: Windsor Court Hotel

Club-level dining room overlooking the Mississippi River

Windsor Court guests who spring for the club level have access to all-day drinks and snacks overlooking the Mississippi River in the lounge. Image: Windsor Court Hotel

Raspberry-lime mousse from The Grill Room

Don’t miss the specialty desserts at The Grill Room, which offers elevated dining in an elegant setting. How beautiful is this artfully composed lemon raspberry mousse? Image: Windsor Court Hotel

Exterior of Café Beignet in New Orleans, LA

Beignets are a must for any trip to the Big Easy. Café Beignet Royal serves delicious ones! Image: Lisa Mowry

New Orleans is a culinary mecca, so make sure to explore the neighborhoods well beyond the walls of your hotel. In addition to the ever-popular beignets served at spots like nearby Café Beignet Royal, the city is home to many charming restaurants by leading chefs.

Compère Lapin has James Beard-winning chef Nina Compton at the helm, and Toups’ Meatery from Bravo TV’s ‘Top Chef’ Isaac Toups offers up NOLA cuisine with a twist. As the birthplace of brunch and the Grasshopper cocktail, Tujague’s specializes in refined Cajun cuisine, while the new Mister Mao brings an unexpected take to global cuisine. And this sampling hardly scratches the surface of notable bars and restaurants around New Orleans — there’s plenty to be explored that keeps us coming back again and again.

Happy travels!

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To explore more hotels and resorts across the South, visit our travel archives.

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