New Orleans is different from any other Southern city or any other place in the world. It has a particular charm -- the French Quarter -- its quaintness, peeling paint, pungent smells of chicory, urine, and jasmine, and a balmy climate that slows you down a bit. New Orleans is known for its eclectic music, giant oak trees, spanish moss, tropical palms, chartreuse banana trees and succulent crawfish and etoufee. Here are a few places that I think are worth a visit!
SWAMP TOURS - There are a few tours that take you to see huge alligators and cypress swamps -- only twenty minutes from N.O. I like to take visitors to New Orleans on a swamp tour -- a little hot and buggy, but fun. The smaller tours are best!
THE CORNSTALK HOTEL is on Royal Street in the French Quarter and furnished with beautiful antiques.
JOSEPHINE GUEST HOUSE is an elegant historic place in the Uptown area. Owners Dan and Mary Ann always offer some good conversation.
LAFITTE GUEST HOUSE and OLIVER HOUSE HOTEL are two of my personal favorites, and are said to be haunted!.
Where to eat? The restaurant I like best is the age-old COMMANDER'S PALACE -- known for their bread pudding, strawberry shortcake, and other Creole delicacies. It has a great Sunday Jazz Brunch! They are my neighbors, so I can smell their cooking all day!
UPPERLINE -- Gourmet creative with Willie White paintings on the walls everywhere (the owner was an early collector off his work) and try the southern fried green tomatoes.
KELSEY'S on Magazine -- my favorite is their coconut salad and Pasta Melanie.
For Sushi -- Magazine Street's SAKI CAFE or the owner Sarahıs KYOTO SUSHI on Prytania.
THE CAMELLLIA GRILL on Carrolton has a old fashioned grill atmosphere and a filling traditional breakfast and good BLTs.
THE NAPOLEAN HOUSE in the French Quarter with its nicotine stained walls was intended as an American home for Napoleon, but he never got to enjoy their tasty dirty Martinis (that's with olive juice), Sazeracs (never easy to find) and zesty Caesar Salad.
GO TO THE ROCK N BOWL - Listen to get down blues and zydeco while you bowl at same time!
SNAKE AND JAKE CHRISTMAS CLUB LOUNGE - A tiny tool shed sized bar where the local musicians hang out after hours! (I was there a couple of years ago and there were two naked young women at the Bar having drinks and no one even cared! Its door is decorated with ancient half burned out Christmas Tree lights!
THE NEUTRAL GROUND - For music with your coffee. On sundays they hold "open mic" night, and if you're there, you may be lucky enough to hear some undiscovered New Orleans music idol of the future!
CAFE BRAZIL - Don't miss this spot in Faubourg Marigny for Salsa and a phlethora of music. A hot spot for dancing!
THE PARASOL BAR in Uptown New orleans is funky and a little shabby, but with the best dressed oyster poboy's in town -- a colorful local hangout. Its in the Irish Channel -- edge of the Garden District, and on St. Patrick's Day, the crowd there is denser than the barometric pressure... and that's dense!
The HOUSE OF BLUES has kool music and Folk art everywhere.... and soul moving Gospel Jazz Brunch every Sunday. A lot of the folk art at HOB was purchased from ANTON HAARDT GALLERY when they first opened!
The SATURN BAR - A "far-out" and obscure little neighborhood bar with visionary art on the walls. Don't miss this one if you crave a unusally weird experience!
CAFE DU MONDE -- For the best coffee and Beingnetsin the French Quarter. Walk through nearby Jackson Square to see some of folk artist Al Taplet's shoe shine art
TEE EVA'S - The best and most down home PRAULINES in the city are on Magazine Street at a small shop owned by the sister of the late songwriter, Ernie K Doe ("Mother in Law" and many others). For a real hoot - visit their MOTHER IN LAW LOUNGE. Tee Eva may even sing you a tune!
JOEY"S GALLERY - For a unique experience that is hard to describe try this unusal sort of jewelry store across the street from Commanders Palace on Washington Avenue. Joey was a decorator and lives now in his studio/shop amidst his hand made crystal bead and metal jewelry, He also makes metal flowers surrounded by his pet birds, squirrels and pidgeons. Be sure and tell him Anton sent you and he'll treat you to a free cup of his best chicory coffee! Hell give you a peanut to feed the squirrels
THOMAS MANN GALLERY on Magazine Street has the finest techno-romantic jewelery in the world! I bought my first piece of jewelry by Tom in the 80's.... he's the best!
UTOPIA on Magazine street has wildly- colored handmade furniture and hip women's clothes, and my favorite health food store is across the street where you can get freshly squeezed wheatgrass juice and fresh hummus. If you are a healthnut, tell the owner (Michael) that Anton sent you!
H AND H ESTATE SALES - Another fun thing, if you're a treasure hunter, is to look in the Garage Sale Classifieds on friday for H AND H Estate Sales on saturdays for best antiques and New Orleans junk from old garden district homes. I go every Saturday - the earlier the better!
THE MAPLE LEAF BAR - Foot-stompin' good Nite Spot for music where music genius James Booker used to play while you did your laundry.
THE CIRCLE BAR - The place where Hank Williams the third played last year, with folks standing in the bushes to hear him wail at rocket speed "Aint Nobody's Business"...
JACKSON SQUARE there's great museum and varigated street performers at JACKSON SQUARE -- you can even get a Tarot reading or have your fortune read
For fun, you can take the St. Charles Trolley with real wooden benches for under $2, and travel up and down the main promenade and drift into a "Streetcar Named Desire" dream... and of course, you must visit THE ANTON HAARDT GALLERY at 2858 MAgazine Street... for the best folk art around... even some of my own paintings of tropical paradises and dinner visual dramas. Just follow your nose, and I'm sure you'll have a special time.
There's still a lot I have not mentioned... Discover them for yourselves, or give us at a call at (504)-891-9080.