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Crescent Park
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New Orleans News | Press

Monthly Media Update

New Orleans' monthly Media Update covers the latest travel and tourism developments around town. Please email to be added to our media mailing list.

What’s New in New Orleans Hospitality Industry – 2023

The first half of 2023 has been successful for New Orleans’ most important industry.  The year started with a bang when we hosted the 71st Annual Miss Universe competition where our city and culture were on full display for an international broadcast audience of 500 million people in 165 countries.

For Mardi Gras, New Orleans & Company partnered with the city of New Orleans, Grounds Krewe and Can Manufacturer’s Institute (CMI) with support from other non-profits dedicated to resilience and sustainability to expand upon previous Carnival recycling efforts with the new Recycle Dat! Initiative collecting 142,974 used beverage cans from four hub recycling locations along the St. Charles Avenue parade route.

The Spring Festival season was one to remember. Hogs for the Cause on the UNO Lakefront was a success, raising $3.6 million for Pediatric Brain Cancer. French Quarter Festival celebrated its 40th anniversary with an estimated 875,000 attendees, the largest number in its history. The Zurich Classic broke the record for highest attendance in a single day in tournament history on Saturday and followed that up with a strong performance on Sunday. New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival saw over 460,000 attendees visit the Fairgrounds over the seven-day event.

For the second year in a row, the TODAY Show with Hoda & Jenna broadcasted live from New Orleans’ Jackson Square on Monday, May 1 and recorded a second show that aired on Tuesday, May 2 meeting with several of the city’s culture bearers. Clips from the two shows are available here.


  • In May, the festival fun spreads to Mid-City and Bayou St. John with Bayou Boogaloo, May 19-21, and the New Orleans Greek Festival, May 26-28.
  • Essence Festival of Culture returns to Downtown New Orleans June 29-July 3. The concert series held at the Caesars Superdome is headlined by Missy Elliott, Ms. Lauryn Hill and Megan Thee Stallion. Tickets are available here.
  • During Restaurant Week from June 19-25, visitors will be able to find multi-course curated menus from some of the best restaurants in New Orleans. A list of participating restaurants is available here.
  • Tales of the Cocktail will take place at a variety of New Orleans hotels, restaurants and bars July 23-28. The theme for 2023 event is VITALIZE to encapsulate the hospitality community’s vibrancy and adaptability.
  • 2023 Festival Calendar Highlights are available here


  • The Audubon Nature Institute announced it will complete its renovation of the Audubon Aquarium of Americas and Insectarium and reopen on June 8. This project is the biggest renovation of the Aquarium since it opened on Canal Street in 1990.
  • In 2020, Audubon announced it would be moving Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium from the U.S. Custom House on Canal Street to the Aquarium campus on the river, building a combined experience that re-envisions Audubon’s downtown guest experience and educational programming. The new renovation will include approximately 17,000 square feet of new exhibit space constructed inside the existing walls of the Aquarium as well as 2,500 square feet of the existing Aquarium breezeway space that will be enclosed to create a shared public lobby.  
  • Tickets to visit the renovated Audubon Aquarium are on sale now, click here.


  • Southern Rail Commission (SRC) and Amtrak announced key project milestones for passenger rail projects within the I-20 Corridor and along the Gulf Coast.
  • Gulf Coast Passenger Rail - Amtrak is currently running familiarization trips for the highly anticipated return of passenger rail service between New Orleans and Mobile.
  • Baton Rouge to New Orleans Rail - Representatives from the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development discussed federal funds the state is currently pursuing to advance the Baton Rouge to New Orleans Passenger Rail project.


  • Louisiana Children’s Museum announced a new Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Tifferney M. White. White is considered a nationally recognized leader in the children’s museum field. She previously served as Chief Learning Officer of Discovery Place.
  • At Discovery Place, she developed the strategy and vision of learning experiences across the Discovery Place museums, the STEM Education Studio, outreach opportunities, and most recently overseeing the two children’s museums.
  • The Convention Center recently announced a new Innovation Team to focus on developing creative approaches to optimize, streamline, and transform convention center operations to assist the venue in delivering its mission to advance innovation.
  • In addition to the Innovation Team, the Convention Center recently added a Chief Diversity Officer (CDO) to their team, becoming the first convention center in the country to do so.  CDO Rocsean Spencer will work in supporting the organization’s policies and directives that mitigate bias, increase equitable outcomes, and foster respect and inclusion, and ensure that the communications and People Services programs reflect the organization’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion goals.


  • In 2024, Nobu Hotel New Orleans and restaurant are set to open within the newly created Caesars New Orleans, following a multimillion-dollar transformation of Harrah’s New Orleans.
  • Kimpton Hotel Fontenot announced that King, the new French brasserie, is now open. The restaurant is part of the hotel's expansion into the historic building next door offering seating for 125 people. King is led by Executive Chef Samuel Peery.
  • For more information on hotel news and developments click here.


  • In line with Disney’s 100th Anniversary, The National WWII Museum in New Orleans will open a special exhibit, “The Walt Disney Studios and World War II,” which explores how one of America’s most beloved entertainment companies helped achieve Allied victory. Disney and history lovers alike may visit the exhibit from now through September 24 in the Museum’s Senator John Alario, Jr. Special Exhibition Hall.
  • Featuring a collection of over 500 rare historical objects and film clips, this traveling exhibit will showcase collections such as “Films and Print for Training, Propaganda, and Entertainment” and “Insignia and Morale.” Not only does the exhibit include profiles of Disney employees who left their studios to join the Armed Forces, but it highlights the remarkable American minorities who paved the way for future Generations.
  • Disney is set to open New Orleans themed projects both in the parks and on the big screen. A New Orleans vibe will take over the recreated “Haunted Mansion,” a New Orleans-set supernatural comedy. Tiana’s Bayou Adventure, based off the New Orleans-set movie “The Princess and the Frog”, will take the place of Splash Mountain in the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World and Disneyland.


  • Breeze Airways recently announced seasonal one stop services to and from Hartford, Connecticut and Los Angeles, California from May-September 5.


  • New Orleans & Company earned the prestigious gold statuette for Best Culinary Destination – U.S.; Silver statuette in Best City Destination – Domestic; and bronze statuette in Best Tourism Board – US at the 8th annual Travvy Awards. New Orleans was also awarded the “Most Desirable City” – Rest of World - by Wanderlust Magazine at the Wanderlust Travel Awards in the United Kingdom. 
  • ​For more information about the awards click here
  • Windsor Court Hotel was voted the No. 1 hotel in New Orleans by Travel + Leisure readers in this year’s World’s Best Awards. Every year Travel + Leisure shares the World's Best Awards survey asking readers to weigh in on travel experiences around the globe.  
  • To view Travel + Leisure’s 5 Best Hotels in New Orleans click here.   
  • 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 Peacock Room at Kimpton Hotel Fontenot was awarded Best Bar in the Hemispheres Magazine 2022 Readers’ Choice Awards. Also featured, the Jazz & Heritage Festival was named the Best Cultural Festival.  
  • 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 Grammy Awards announced the list of nominees for the 2023 awards. Several Louisiana artists including PJ Morton, Tank and the Bangas, Lil Wayne, and Dr. John were nominated. The 65th Grammy Awards will air live on Sunday, February 5.  

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, Facebook at New Orleans & Company, or Twitter and Instagram @Visit New Orleans.

Media Contact
MaryBeth Romig
Associate Vice President, Communications & Public Relations, 504-556-5050

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