It's not exactly shocking, but the Crescent City not only has something for everybody but for every body.
NOLA has made Orbitz's annual list of America's sexiest cities, "a city where romance abounds all year round" according to our own Convention and Visitors Bureau.
While the story broke before Valentine's Day, natch -- sorry, I was too busy romancing to remember to post it -- we can just call this an "evergreen" anyway. Goodness knows New Orleans is the Paris of the South, where just a stroll along the Mississippi at sunset can set your heart a-flutter.
- Rio de Janeiro
- St. Tropez
- Monte Carlo
Good for NOLA for beating out San Francisco (this Examiner's hometown), but what's up with Miami. Really? Let's do a recount.
"Our city has never been more romantic," said Mark Romig, President and CEO of the New Orleans Tourism Marketing Corporation. "There are discounted packages available that will fit any budget, and southern hospitality that offers fun, great activities, and the perfect destination for a romantic Spring Fling."
So what's so sexy about my adopted city? How about...
- The Moonwalk at Dusk
- An historic streetcar ride down St. Charles
- The Sculpture Garden at City Park
- Any French Quarter lush and beautiful courtyard
- A carriage ride in the Quarter
- The fountain at Audubon Park
- Huggin on the top deck of the Steamboat Natchez
- A rooftop patio off Bourbon
- A corner booth at a dimly lit jazz club
- The courtyard area near the flaming fountain at Pat O'Brien's
- The Lakefront at sunset
"New Orleans has played cupid for many couples," says Stephen Perry, President and C.E.O. of the New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau. "Whether you are on your honeymoon or a 30th anniversary getaway, New Orleans' inherent sexiness will ensure an unforgettable travel experience."
While in town, couples may want to go dancing, dining and romancing aboard the aforementioned Steamboat Natchez or the Creole Queen, staying in any number of romantic hotels 9see below). Or heck, even get married.
Here is a list of this Examiner's recommended hotels:
1) Holiday Inn Express, French Quarter - cheap, rooftop pool, super friendly staff (on Carondolet on the Street car line) (www.hifrenchquarterhotel.com)
2) Maison Dupuy - fancy schmancy, a courtyard straight out of a Merchant Ivory film, excellent wine bar and onsite jazz (www.maisondupuy.com)
3) Omni Royal Orleans - a four-diamond award winner in the heart of the Quarter, luxury with a quirky kick (www.omnihotels.com/FindAHotel/NewOrleansRoyalOrleans.aspx)
4) Inn on Bourbon New Orleans - Overlooking Bourbon St. near Jackson Square with a romantic courtyard and sexy setting (www.bourbonorleans.com)
5) Hotel Monteleone - historic, dripping with the kind of luxury only an oyster lover could appreciate, exquisitely appointed (www.hotelmonteleone.com)
6) Astor Crowne - stunning Canal Street staple, convenient enough for that late-night Bourbon Street stop but elegant enough for your mother (www.astorneworleans.com)