Christmas is an amazing celebration of life, love, joy and freedom. I never want to lose the celebratory spirit of the season. I find it inspirational and transformative to experience the holidays in different regions to see firsthand how others celebrate. This year - New Orleans, last year it was Santa Fe. Two distinctively different cities in their architecture, their arts and their cuisine. Each is lovely in its own way. Let me share with you our jazzy New Orleans holiday…
The historic Garden District is home to the finest and grandest architecture in New Orleans. Many homes were festively decorated with big red bows or garlands. Some even had Christmas trees on their upper verandas.
Many luminaries have lived in the Garden District, such as writer Anne Rice, actors Nicolas Cage and Sandra Bullock to name a few. Historical figure Jefferson Davis, the President of the Confederate States of America, probably not a favorite figure with Northerners, also resided in New Orleans at one time.
Notable architect Henry Howard, an immigrant from Ireland and sometimes called the forgotten architect, was responsible for so many of the resplendent architectural homes in the area. Howard infused his grand structures with fabulous details by using techniques that blended both American and European styles.
Two hotels were a must see for their noted, over the top Christmas decor - The Roosevelt, and the Four Seasons, which were both in nearby downtown, only a trolley stop away. Some of the best tips often come from fellow travelers. We stalked a few until they led us to these magical wonderlands…. (okay we didn’t stalk them but may have followed them for a bit). These beauties prove they were in the know!
The iconic French Quarter has its own kind of holiday magic. While on our engaging, historically enlightening, and delicious food tour with Dr. Gumbo, we viewed much wonder, magic and song in this historic sweet spot.
Just down from the French Quarter we were delighted to find Luna Fete, an amazing outdoor festival of light, art & technology presented by the Arts Council, which featured local artists who cast their light creations onto the historic Gallier Hall. We were spellbound.
Looks like these holiday trips will be an annual event…hmmmm where to go next year!