This past February, Josh and I traveled to The French Quarter in New Orleans, Louisiana for a few days of relaxation. With both of us being business owners, it can be difficult to truly set aside some time away from our computers to refresh. We set our e-mail messages to auto-reply and took a flight out of CHO Airport.
February 1st was Josh’s birthday, so I thought it would be fitting to take a trip to a place with European architectural influences (something Josh has loved since his years as a foreign exchange student). I had flown to New Orleans for a wedding back in 2013, but Josh had never stepped foot in the state of Louisiana. We checked into a sweet little place in the heart of the French Quarter called the French Market Inn. If you’re looking for a cute and simple spot to rest your head, we both thoroughly enjoyed our stay. It was perfectly located within quick walking distance of the beloved and wildly popular Cafe du Monde. Confession: We indulged ourselves once per day with delicious, sugar-coated beignets. No regrets!
On our first day, we wandered aimlessly – being inspired by the sounds of jazz, vagabond-style tunes, and beautiful textures. While taking a stroll, we stumbled across an open Bevolo workshop with two kind gentleman who were crafting gaslight lamps. Bevolo began in The French Quarter back in 1945 and, to this day, all of their iconic copper lamps are still pieces of art, made by hand.
As we walked the streets, we passed many horse-drawn carriages and delicious eateries. Some of our favorites included Stanley (so good that we ate here twice!), Napoleon House, EAT New Orleans, The Maison on Frenchman (loved their seasoned chicken wings!), and Cafe Beignet (in our opinions, the beignets at Cafe du Monde were better… but Josh very much enjoyed his Ham & Swiss lunch).
The French Quarter is known for its jazz and street music, so we spent quite a bit of time stopping and listening to live local tunes. One particular music group (St. Cinder) stood out to us and we sat for nearly the entirety of their afternoon show. Note: I honestly cannot remember the last time I purchased a physical CD, but it just made sense to do so. These folks are talented and whip up some catchy tunes!
Since the Inn was so close, we spent quite a bit of time in the Jackson Square area. During one of the days, we stumbled across a sweet elderly man selling hand-drawn art on the corner of St Peter Street and Chartres Street. I snapped a quick photograph and asked him if he was the artist behind the drawings. He proudly told us yes and proceeded to excitedly inform us of the locations shown in his work. Supporting local artists is something of great importance to us, so we decided to purchase an original drawing!
Of course, it was a requirement to grab tickets to an evening showing at Preservation Hall (for a true and traditional New Orleans jazz experience). The audience gathered in a small space with a simple setup: floor cushions, wooden benches, and standing room in the back. We listened, we sung, we cheered, and perhaps even danced and tapped to the beat. Photographs were prohibited inside of the Hall (thus no photos to share here), but we enjoyed listening to such talented musicians in a laid-back setting. A good time was certainly had during our last night in The French Quarter!
Note: Some other places we stopped by and highly recommend checking out are The National WWII Museum and Spitfire Coffee. This was my second time to the WWII Museum and the experience was as glorious as the last visit. At Spitfire Coffee, I experienced one of the best cappuccinos I’ve ever tasted.
Images captured on the Leica M6 & Contax 645 with Fuji 400H and Portra 400. B&W images converted from Portra 400.