- New Orleans is the Cultural Capital of the South, boasting many new cultural attractions, hotels and restaurants that have opened since 2019, and hundreds of millions of dollars of investments and upgrades at the New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center and citywide.
- As we continue to emerge from the pandemic, the series of successful major events continues for New Orleans’ cultural economy. We started 2022 with the Allstate Sugar Bowl, Mardi Gras and the NCAA Men’s Final Four. Then we moved into Zurich Classic, Navy Week, French Quarter Fest and Jazz Fest. This summer, we hosted the New Orleans Wine and Food Experience and Essence Festival of Culture.
- The Audubon Zoo has been named one of the 14 best zoos in America by Travellers Worldwide.
- Four Seasons New Orleans and Hotel Saint Vincent have been named to the Travel + Leisure It List 2022, the 100 Best New Hotels in the World.
- The Ernest N. Morial Convention Center earned two major awards from the Louisiana Department of Environmental for major and impactful initiatives aimed at reducing the facility’s environmental footprint.
- The Environmental Leadership Program Awards, given to the Convention Center in the Community Environmental Outreach category, as well as the Energy and Water Pollution Reduction category, recognize outstanding activities and projects that demonstrate environmental leadership and the pursuit of a cleaner, safer environment.
- Starting on Veterans Day 2022, the National World War II Museum will open Expressions of America, a first-of-its-kind nighttime sound and light experience celebrating the power of individual Americans to impact the world around them during a time of monumental conflict.
- Expressions of America will immerse audiences in written words, songs, and personal reflections of the everyday men and women who served our country in every way imaginable during World War II.
- Generously presented by the Bob & Dolores Hope Foundation, Expressions of America will uniquely combine the latest outdoor projection technology with wartime letters and oral histories from the Museum’s collection to allow audiences to experience the stories of the WWII generation like never before.
- The second annual NOLAxNOLA is slated to return September 23-October 9, 2022. The festival is designed to suport the New Orleans music community and preserve vital tourism business in the fall.
- In its inaugural year, 35 venues from nearly every neighborhood in the city participated over a span of two weeks, including Tipitinas, Preservation Hall, The Howlin’ Wolf, d.b.a., Kermit Ruffins’ Mother In Law Lounge, The Maple Leaf, Snug Harbor Jazz Bistro, Buffas, the Saturn Bar, Three Keys, Gasa Gasa and Cafe Istanbul. In total there were more than 300 shows over 10 days in October.
- 2022 Festival Calendar Highlights:
- For a full list of events, click here.
- The Backstreet Cultural Museum announced its reopening in July 22 and its new location at 1531 St. Phillip Street in the Treme neighborhood. For over 20 years, the Backstreet Museum has been the home of Mardi Gras Indian suits, Social Aid and Pleasure Club insignias, as well as Skull and Bones and Baby Doll memorabilia and other pieces of New Orleans’ one-of-a-kind parading culture.
- The museum was owned and operated by the beloved Sylvester Francis who passed away in 2020. His daughter, Dominique Dilling-Francis, will carry on his legacy and take over the operations of the museum.
- Museum of the Southern Jewish Experience, located in the Warehouse District, opened in early 2021. The museum explores the unique history and culture of Southern Jews: how and when they arrived, which customs they held on to, and how they created new traditions alongside their neighbors in cities large and small across the South.
- Liberations Pavilion at The National WWII Museum, currently under construction, will mark the final major addition to The National WWII Museum.
- Liberation Pavilion, which is expected to open in late spring 2023, will explore the end of the war, the Holocaust, the immediate postwar years, and the war’s continuing impact today. The pavilion will house two floors of exhibit space featuring personal experiences, iconic imagery, impactful artifacts, and immersive settings.
- Sazerac House offers an interactive, high-tech experience takes visitors through a journey of the history and culture of spirits in New Orleans including the world-famous Sazerac Cocktail and Sazerac's roots, dating back to the 1850s, and includes a micro-distillery on-site.
- Vue New Orleans, located on the 33rd and 34th floors of Four Seasons Hotel New Orleans, is a one-of-a-kind indoor and outdoor observation deck and exhibit featuring the only 360-degree panoramic riverfront views of New Orleans and beyond.
- It is a state-of-the-art cultural exhibit designed to honor, celebrate, and share stories of the diverse cultures that converged to create the magic that is New Orleans.
- The Sydney and Walda Besthoff Sculpture Garden was originally conceived in 2003 but doubled in size in 2019 and has grown to include more than 90 sculptures. Occupying approximately eleven acres in City Park adjacent to the New Orleans Museum of Art, the garden design creates outdoor viewing spaces within this picturesque landscape. Admission is free.
- The Louisiana Children’s Museum (LCM) has moved from its long-time home on Julia Street to City Park. The new LCM is situated on 8.5 acres and has been designed for Silver LEED certification. The museum includes five interactive exhibits including a 100-foot long mighty Mississippi water exhibit, plus indoor and outdoor environment elements, including decks, bridges, sensory and edible gardens, a floating classroom and a restored interpretive wetlands area.
- LCM has partnered with local restaurant group, Dickie Brennan & Co., for the onsite full-service cafe, Acorn, which has seating for 165, with half the seating inside and half outside. There is also a kid's culinary lab and child size booths.
- Southern Food & Beverage Museum (SoFAB) is offering an in-depth look into how to create delicious, traditional dishes that can be found nowhere else in the world, while discussing their cultural and historical origins led by Chef Dee Lavigne, SoFAB’s Director of Culinary Programming.
- Both the Cajun and Creole classes include a curatorial-led tour of the museum.
- Zip NOLA is a new swamp zipline attraction located 26 miles from downtown New Orleans and 15 miles from Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport.
- Zip NOLA’s state of the art facility is nestled on the banks of Lake Pontchartrain, in the quaint historic town of Frenier. The course is roughly one-half mile long, taking guests approximately an hour and a half to complete.
- The Frenchmen Hotel was remodeled and opened in February 2022. Originally built in 1860, The Frenchmen hotel has a storied history hosting locals and visitors of New Orleans alike. Remodeled and reimagined in 2021, The Frenchmen continues to honor that tradition by breathing new life throughout our historic walls.
- From the rooftop bar to the courtyard plunge pool and the expressive art to the authentic jazz resonating from the sister venue Midnight Revival, the destinations in The Frenchmen are just as robust as those on Frenchmen Street.
- Mint House New Orleans Riverside located minutes from New Orleans' famed French Quarter, is an adaptive reuse project housed in a converted warehouse with 15 design-forward, spacious apartments ranging from one-to-three bedrooms. The interiors were inspired by the bold colors and history of New Orleans.
- Four Seasons Hotel & Private Residences New Orleans opened its doors in August 2021. Located on the Riverfront at the foot of Canal Street, the hotel is the latest addition to the city’s luxury accommodations. The 34-story, mixed use development houses a 341-key hotel on the lower floors and 81 luxury condominiums on the upper floors.
- The property includes two restaurants: Miss River by Chef Alon Shaya and Chemin a La Mer by Chef Donald Link and The Chandelier Bar. Chemin a La Mer offers spectacular views of the Mississippi River.
- Virgin Hotels New Orleans is the latest lifestyle brand to open its doors in the Warehouse District in August 2021.
- The property features 238 chambers as well as multiple dining and drinking outlets including the brand’s signature Commons Club and Funny Library Coffee Shop.
- Hotel Saint Vincent opened in June 2021 in the Lower Garden District. This is the latest project by designer and hotelier Liz Lambert and her partners at MML Hospitality.
- The 75-room hotel honors Saint Vincent’s storied past with highly considered restoration and modern design that complement the property’s historic character.
- The hotel features two restaurants: San Lorenzo, a coastal Italian menu with New Orleans inspiration, and the second outpost of Elizabeth Street Café, the perennial Austin favorite, featuring a French bakery and Vietnamese café menu.
- One 11 Hotel, the first new hotel in over fifty years in the French Quarter, opened in December 2020.
- Located on Iberville St., it is a chic, 83-room hotel.
- Guests and locals will find reprieve from the energy of the surrounding streets in the common areas, including a sophisticated lobby bar and restaurant with outdoor seating, art galleries celebrating different themes on every floor, and a vibrant rooftop with panoramic views of the French Quarter and Mississippi River, open only to hotel guests.
- The Chloe, on St. Charles Avenue, is a boutique-style hotel in Uptown New Orleans that opened in 2020.
- The hotel features 13-foot ceilings, original fireplaces and other historic details.
- Kimpton Hotel Fontenot, located at the intersection of Poydras and Tchoupitoulas Streets in the Central Business District, is a property that pays homage to the city’s rich musical history. Originally opening briefly in March 2020, the hotel’s grand reopening was in May 2021.
- The Peacock Room, the crown jewel of the Kimpton Hotel Fontenot, offers a contemporary selection of hard to come by spirits and the menu features refined regional classics as well as live music.
- Higgins Hotel & Conference Center, a Curio Collection by Hilton on the campus of The National World War II Museum, opened in mid-2019. The hotel features 230 guestrooms, a second-floor conference center with more than 18,000 square feet of meeting space, plus restaurants, a provisions market and a rooftop venue with stunning views of the city.
- Alon and Emily Shaya’s Pomegranate Hospitality introduced Saba’s Lounge, an all-new lounge space adjacent to the group’s flagship restaurant, Saba.
- Located at 5757 Magazine Street Suite B, the lounge offers Israeli-inspired cocktails and a list of curated unique and natural wines, alongside a menu of Saba’s signature salatim, hummus, wood-fired pita, and desserts. Beverage highlights include special large-format classic cocktails such as a Negroni, Old Fashioned, and Sazerac — served in a beautiful, hand-selected decanter meant to be shared.
- Mister Mao is a new tropical roadhouse on Tchoupitoulas in the Garden District. Unapologetically inauthentic, Mister Mao is serving up locally sourced, global flavors through refined small plates.
- St. John is a new restaurant on Decatur Street in the French Quarter in September 2021.
- Chef/owner Eric Cook’s menu will draw influences from the melting pot of cultures that lent traditions, flavors, ingredients, and cooking styles to the city- Italian, French, African, German and Caribbean.
- Banh Mi Boys, a unique Vietnamese sandwich shop, has expanded from its Metairie location. In December 2021, Banh Mi Boys opened up a new location Uptown on Magazine Street.
- The former Claret Wine Bar space was renamed The Bower Bar and opened in early January 2022.
- The cocktail program at The Bower Bar is under the direction of Beverage Director Mickey Mullins and features field-to-glass libations focusing on the seasonal herbs, flowers and produce available at Sugar Roots Farm.
- Guests at The Bower Bar can enjoy the same culinary creations found next door at The Bower, along with the famed “boards” that made Claret a go-to destination for cheese and charcuterie.
- Carnival, Disney and Norwegian Cruise Lines all have resumed Caribbean cruising.
- Both the Carnival Glory and Valor resumed year-round cruising in late 2021.
- The Norwegian vessel Breakaway also resumed seasonal cruising in late 2021.
- The Disney Wonder resumed cruising in February 2022 and will go through March.
- American Cruise Lines and American Queen Voyages have both resumed year-round Mississippi River cruising with Viking River Cruises scheduled to resume on June 25.
- The Royal Caribbean International Radiance of the Seas will sail from New Orleans November 2022 - January 2023.
- All vaccine and mask mandates have ended in the city.
New Orleans & Company is the tourism and hospitality industry’s official destination sales, marketing and trade organization, responsible for driving over $10 billion of diverse annual business to the regional cultural economy. We attract leisure and cultural travel, business meetings, conventions, weddings, festivals, sporting and special events to New Orleans, considered the cultural capital of the south, in a highly competitive global environment. Founded in 1960, New Orleans & Company is committed to celebrating the richness of our culture while creating jobs, building careers, and enhancing the quality of life for every New Orleanian. For more, please call 504-566-5011, visit Neworleans.com, Facebook at New Orleans & Company, or Twitter and Instagram @Visit New Orleans.