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My four years of reviewing NOLA haunts: toasting the best of the best (part 2)

Whether you are looking for a place to unload your pooch or an easy hop onto the streetcar, NOLA has a hotel for you. Just remember to bring your mask, your flask and a leash and you're good to go.

Chef and restaurateur Emeril Lagasse is a New Orleans legend
Photo by Dylan Rives
The Hotel Modern at Lee Circle is simple but elegant
The Hotel Modern

Yesterday, July 13 I feted the best place to hold a parrot and where to drink a decadent ginger mint julep. Today I examine the best pet-friendly hotels as well as where to find the friendliest servers, and oh yes, where you can find the best mattress.

Pooch-and-puss-friendliest hotel: Hat's off to Creole Gardens, which I've written about more than once. Maybe it's the location (Garden District) or the easy feel of the place, but for my cat's money, it'd be the place we'd settle for a week and not worry about disturbing the neighbors. Not to mention that it's uber-duber close to this examiner's fave barbeque joint, the infamous Voo-Doo Bar-B-Q on St. Charles!

Where to jump on a streetcar: The Holiday Inn on Carondolet, though less swanky, has friendly staff, an endlessly full bowl of apples and prime access to the St. Charles streetcar. Second choice: The Hotel Modern, where you can catch a ride right outside, too, there on

The best people-watching lobby: Windsor Court, for not only is it divinely English, grand and gleaming, but you're treated to the scent of 144 fresh pink roses.

Friendliest servers at the onsite restaurant: Hyatt Regency tied with Windsor Court

Best mattress and opportunity to spot a ghost: Dauphine Orleans at 415 Dauphine. Rumor has it that some deceased, ur, ladies-of-the-evening wander the halls at night. I don't know about that, but if so she will have to fight me to get my Tempur-Pedic mattress. So soft you'll never want to get out of bed. Hmm.

Best hotel for a girlfriends' getaway: The W, because it's not only the first initial of this examiner's last name, but because it stands for "wow". A couple drinks at the onsite SoBou will get you gals in the mood for a night on the town. When you return (early, ladies!) sink back into your comfy rooms, replete with their 350-thread count linens and panoramic views of the city. Ask for the Spectacular Room, which sleeps four ladies comfortably (or four ladies and that mysterious person you just brought home.)

Laissez les bons temp rouler. Until next year's awards!

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