Interstate inks New Orleans deal

Interstate Hotels & Resorts has signed an agreement to manage the historic Bourbon Orleans hotel, in the heart of New Orleans’ French Quarter.  It is the third hotel Interstate manages in the Crescent City, all owned by a local group of hotel developers.  Interstate is in discussions with the same group of investors regarding management of a fourth hotel expected to open this fall.
Located at 717 Orleans at the corner of Bourbon Street, the 218-room Bourbon Orleans is situated directly behind the landmark St. Louis cathedral, offering easy access to the city’s most celebrated attractions, including Royal Street and its upscale shopping, the always entertaining Jackson Square, the CafĂ© du Monde and the diversions and nightlife of Bourbon Street.  Built in 1817 and opened as the opulent New Orleans Ballroom, the property catered to the city’s love of dancing and balls, and was adjacent to the Orleans Theater, where French Opera was established in America.  The facility was purchased in 1881 by the Sisters of the Holy Family and served as a school for more than 80 years.  In 1964, the property was sold to hotel interests.  The Bourbon Orleans of today combines the elegance of a European boutique hotel with the modern amenities demanded by today’s guests. 
“The Bourbon Orleans is a New Orleans treasure and a favorite with visitors seeking a connection to the city’s rich history and Southern charm,” said Thomas F. Hewitt, Interstate’s chief executive officer.  “This unique, historic hotel is a strong contributor to this market as the city continues to recover and return to pre-Katrina levels. 
“We are delighted to add a third locally owned New Orleans hotel to our portfolio and build on our previous relationship with this group of owners,” he added.  “We consider the offer of additional hotels from our current owners as a major compliment, and we look forward to delivering the same superior level of service we have provided in the past.”
“Interstate has delivered outstanding results for us to date, and we look forward to expanding our relationship with them through the Bourbon,” said Joseph A. Jaeger, Jr., managing member of St. Ann Lodging, LLC.  “Their expertise with historic hotels and urban destination markets, together with their proprietary operating systems and marketing expertise, makes them a strong choice as manager.  We believe the property will generate strong returns and be a significant player in the city’s comeback.” 
Each of the Bourbon Orleans’ spacious guestrooms exhibits its own charm and grace, with features like Chippendale and Queen Anne furnishings, pillow top mattresses and private balconies with views of the hotel gardens, the French Quarter or the city, combined with such modern amenities as large work desks and ergonomic chairs, high-speed Internet access, mini bars and room safes. 
The hotel features 6,000 square feet of flexible event space, anchored by the elegant, 2,700 square-foot Orleans Ballroom, which can accommodate groups of up to 350. 
The hotel also offers some of the French Quarter’s most notable cuisine at its three restaurants:  Paillard’s, the hotel’s new Southern fusion restaurant; Vieux Dieux Brew, a smaller, more intimate venue in the hotel’s lobby; and Napoleon’s Itch, an after-hours lounge that is quickly becoming the hottest addition to the dynamic nightlife of the French Quarter.