With Valentine’s Day around the corner, your mind is likely racing with all of the possible romantic grand gestures. Our advice to you? Book a vacation/staycation in dreamy New Orleans and enjoy a romantic getaway that will impress your sweetheart.
Stroll the French Quarter
The French Quarter was made for romance. Stroll Royal Street hand in hand, and stop into one of the many boutiques to buy your loved one (and yourself) a memento. Royal Street offers everything from quaint antique shops to high-end jewelers, so it’s well worth the stroll.
Across the street from Jackson Square, hike up to the Moon Walk (a promenade named for a former New Orleans Mayor) and grab a bench so you can both gaze across the vast Mississippi River. Bring some cash to tip busking musicians and you’ll add some tunes to the night.
Savor Swoon-Worthy Dinners
Book a romantic dinner at one of Dickie Brennan’s restaurants. The second-generation restauranteur’s Tableau has an unbeatable location in Jackson Square – the heart of the French Quarter. Nab a second-level balcony seat and enjoy a delicious Creole dinner (try their decadent duck breast) while taking in some of the best people watching in the city. For a decadent chateaubriand for two and table-side martinis, schedule your romantic evening at Dickie Brennan’s Steakhouse. Another cozy option is Tujague’s, which has been dishing up old-school NOLA-style cuisine for 160 years, so you and your date can savor the flavors of old New Orleans.
Wining and Dining Outdoors
Bacchanal Fine Wines & Spirits combines two of the most romantic aspects of New Orleans – food and music. This local hideaway has an expansive wine store in the front, where you can select your favorite vintage. The sommelier will uncork it and bring it into the outdoor dining area under a canopy of sparkling lights, where you can enjoy wine, cheese, and great music – setting the scene for the romance to come. Be prepared to wait for a bit on Valentine’s Day because they don’t take reservations, but you’re likely to witness a proposal or two, as the band plays on.
Dance it Up on Frenchmen Street
Keep the musical theme of the night going at Frenchmen Street’s entertainment district – a three-block string of clubs that’s a nice respite from the rowdier Bourbon Street. Head directly to The Spotted Cat and dance the night away with your sweetheart to some of the best jazz in the Crescent City. Swing dancers flock to this locale, so you’ll have plenty of dancing inspiration.
All That Jazz
New Orleans is the birthplace of jazz, and there’s no shortage of venues to enjoy together. Snug Harbor Jazz Bistro, also on Frenchmen Street, offers a chance to sit comfortably with your sweetheart and soak in the music of jazz legends like Ellis Marsalis or one the many members of his talented family. The club has a higher cover than most other New Orleans music halls, but that ensures that you’re surrounded by other music lovers.
Palm Court Jazz Cafe on Decatur Street is a romantic, old-school jazz bistro. You’re likely to meet regulars who make the pilgrimage back to New Orleans to hear their favorite combos five nights a week. The classic jazz tune “Palm Court Strut (Swing Your Butt)” originated there, and is played as regularly as you would imagine.
Stay in the Romantic Roosevelt Hotel
Book a vacation or staycation at iconic luxury hotel The Roosevelt New Orleans Waldorf Astoria. The Roosevelt’s holiday decorations are legendary and the sparkle continues on through Valentine’s Day. Book a relaxing Couple’s Therapy Suite massage at the Waldorf Astoria spa, complete with luxurious local ingredients. Follow your appointment with a refreshing dip in the rooftop pool.
Post-pool, you can toast your trip with cocktails in The Sazerac Bar, named for one of the world’s first mixed drinks, surrounded by historic Paul Ninas murals. The Roosevelt has a colorful past, including Louisiana Governor Huey “The Kingfish” Long keeping a suite there for his burlesque-dancer girlfriend Blaze Starr.
Make your own history with a Valentine’s Day stay in New Orleans at a Hilton hotel.