A number of boutique hotels have opened in New Orleans in recent years, from the Atelier Ace-owned Maison de la Luz downtown, to Hotel Peter and Paul, an independently-owned conversion of a Marigny Catholic church with a nationally acclaimed food and beverage program, to the newly-opened Kimpton Hotel Fontenot in the CBD.
Now, two of the biggest hotel brands in the world are set to make their New Orleans debut this summer — the Four Seasons and a Richard Branson-owned Virgin hotel. Additionally, the developer behind the Drifter and Catahoula hotels has transformed a Victorian-era infant orphanage-turned-guest house into a boutique property featuring two restaurants, one an offshoot of a popular Austin French-Vietnamese cafe, set to open later this month.
Here now, a look at the three forthcoming hotels — where, when, what they will look like, and most importantly, their food and drink offerings.
Four Seasons Hotel and Residences New Orleans
Restaurants: Miss River, the Chandelier Bar, and as-yet-unnamed Donald Link restaurant
Where: 2 Canal Street, CBD
When: July 21, 2021
The hotly-anticipated Four Seasons New Orleans recently announced it was finally accepting guest reservations for its 341 rooms starting July 21, 2021. Located in the former World Trade Center New Orleans overlooking the Mississippi River, the 34-story tower hotel will feature restaurants from Alon Shaya and Donald Link, two heavyweights in the New Orleans restauranteur world. Shaya will lead the hotel’s “primary,” lobby-level restaurant, Miss River, which is set to open alongside the hotel. Shaya told Eater the team has designed a leisurely, progressive experience common in New Orleans fine dining destinations like Galatoire’s and Commander’s Palace, with teased dishes including whole buttermilk fried chicken served with dipping sauces; clay pot dirty rice with seared duck breast and duck egg yolk; a Louisiana oyster patty with puff pastry and caramelized mushrooms; and a salt-crusted red whole red snapper.
Miss River’s bar seats 30 people, with another 120 or so seats distributed throughout a large dining room, outdoor terrace, and wine tasting area. The hotel’s lobby bar, dubbed the Chandelier Bar, is run by Hadi Ktiri (previously a bartender at Arnaud’s French 75 Bar) and will focus on Champagne offerings and iconic New Orleans cocktails, with a menu of bar snacks from Shaya.
The Link Restaurant Group, owners of Herbsaint, Cochon, Gianna, and Butcher, will run a restaurant on the hotel’s fifth floor, adjacent to the crescent-shaped infinity pool, featuring floor-to-ceiling views overlooking the Mississippi. The as-yet-unnamed restaurant is expected to open in October 2021, a few months after the hotel’s initial opening.
Hotel Saint Vincent
Restaurants: San Lorenzo, Elizabeth Street Cafe
Where: 1507 Magazine St., LGD
When: June 22, 2021
Hotel Saint Vincent is from Zach Kupperman and Jayson Seidman, hotel developers also behind the Drifter on Tulane Avenue, in partnership with Austin hospitality veterans Larry McGuire and Liz Lambert of MML Hospitality. It has 75 rooms, a couple of outdoor terraces, and a guests-only lounge and swimming pool. For food and beverage, the hotel will have a replica of popular Austin restaurant Elizabeth Street Cafe, serving French-Vietnamese pastries for breakfast and Vietnamese specialties for lunch and early dinner, like ginger-chili oil dumplings, banh mi, and chicken laap. There will also be cocktails and natural wine offerings, coffee and tea, and desserts including strawberry guava jam or lychee raspberry jam beignets, a dark chocolate pot de creme with miso caramel, daily macarons, and a Nutella eclair.
The hotel’s primary, all-day restaurant, called San Lorenzo (the patron saint of cooks), claims it will mix coastal Italian cuisine with New Orleans influences with a focus on seafood — the dinner menu includes a raw bar with oysters from the Northeast and Pacific Northwest as well as the Gulf Coast; seafood tartar, carpaccio, and crudo; fresh pasta dishes that center around seafood or vegetables (squid ink chitara, lobster spaghetti arribiata, and shrimp scampi risotto); and steak, pork chop, snapper, and swordfish on the grill. The hotel and San Lorenzo are expected to open on June 22, 2021, while Elizabeth Street Cafe is officially open.
Virgin Hotels New Orleans
Restaurants: Commons Club, Pool Club, and Funny Library Coffee Shop
Where: 550 Baronne St., Warehouse District
When: Labor Day weekend 2021
Billionaire Richard Branson expands his hotel empire to New Orleans this summer, debuting an $80 million hotel in the Warehouse District with 238 guestrooms, something called a Shag Room, and a food and beverage program from Alex Harrell, a well-known local chef who’s led the kitchen at Sylvain, Angeline, and most recently, Hotel Peter and Paul. In addition to a coffee shop and rooftop pool and lounge, Harrell will oversee a menu of contemporary Southern-American cuisine for Virgin Hotels New Orleans’s Commons Club — which shares the same name as the restaurants at Virgin properties in Nashville, Chicago, and Dallas.
- New Four Seasons Hotel in New Orleans Will Feature Restaurant From Alon Shaya [ENOLA]
- Donald Link Partners With Four Seasons New Orleans for Hotel Restaurant [ENOLA]
- New Orleans’s Most Anticipated Restaurant Openings for 2021 [ENOLA]
- A Trendy Austin Vietnamese Restaurant Is Expanding to New Orleans [ENOLA]
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