Award-Winning New Orleans Boutique Hotel
When it comes to an authentic, and eclectic place to stay in New Orleans you cannot go wrong with this award-winning New Orleans Bed and Breakfast. La Belle Esplanade is located in heart of the soulful, Treme neighborhood of New Orleans, which is known for its jazz clubs, soul food spots and cultural centers this area celebrates the local African-American and Creole heritage.
Built-in 1883, La Belle Esplanade has been ranked as the #1 place to stay in New Orleans since 2014. This French Quarter hotel, located on the historic Esplanade Avenue, was built as a Creole response to the mansions on Saint Charles Avenue.
The house is one of three homes built on Esplanade Avenue by cotton broker Julius Weiss, a German native who spent a few years around Mississippi and Louisiana before ultimately settling in New Orleans. Weiss never actually lived in any of the houses he built. The homes were built with a unique “pizza shape” in the back due to the property lines of the neighborhood.
Hard Times in Treme
In the 1960s, the fashionable neighborhood experienced hard times, and the three buildings, which were converted into apartments, fell in disrepair much in the same way many of the stately mansions on the same street did at that time.
Two decades later, preservationist and attorney James Derbes purchased the address that is now the La Belle Esplanade with the intention of turning it into a bed and breakfast. With the “sweat equity” investment, Derbes restored the building to its original glory, period charm and all. Not satisfied with just one project, James Derbes also took advantage of a unique opportunity to purchase the neighboring address, 2222 Esplanade Ave and so the two became one as Esplanade Villa.
Surviving Hurricane Katrina
When Hurricane Katrina struck the city, the house, amazingly, did not sustain any water damage. Even though the landscape of New Orleans is flat, the street sits atop Esplanade Ridge, one of the highest points in the city.
Soon after Katrina, Esplanade Villa ceased its operation as a bed and breakfast and was converted back into apartments. Then, in 2012, Mr. Derbes was gracious enough to part with the building which he worked so hard to restore. La Belle Esplanade is now a historic hotel in the New Orleans French Quarter that is operated by La Belle Esplanade, LLC with the mission to help guests experience the real New Orleans.
La Belle Esplanade has 5-suites, each with a clawfoot tub, shower and private sitting room. All the suites also boast a private balcony from where you can watch the city go by down below.
The La Belle Esplanade Goodwill Ambassadors
The current owners of the hotel are Matthew King and Melanie Schmitt, who moved to New Orleans in 2010. While not natives of the area, they call New Orleans home and like so many of its visitors, they are completely captivated by the city.
Matthew King is the public face of the hotel, handling all the guest relations and correspondence. Perfectly fitting for his life as an inn owner, he was and still is, a jack-of-all-trades before he became an innkeeper. He has served on the board of directors of the New Orleans Tour Guide Association, the Professional Innkeepers of New Orleans Association, and the Louisiana Bed and Breakfast Association. So if you’re looking for an area expert, Matthew is the guy to seek out.
The other half of the inn-keeping duo is Melanie Schmitt. A native of Hamburg Germany, Frau Schmitt is an incredibly nice, well-traveled individual, as well as an excellent chef.
bnbfinder Diamond Member Collection
La Belle Esplanade Hotel is a member of the bnbfinder Diamond Collection. Diamond Collection is an exclusive group of professionally inspected and highly rated luxury inns. Each member of the bnbfinder Diamond Collection is required to have passed a professional inspection from a third-party industry-recognized inspection agency.
Members of this program offer guests exceptional experiences and levels of service in line with and in many cases exceeding today’s discerning travelers’ highest expectations. bnbfinder invites you to peruse our Diamond Collection members listed below. Remember to tell the innkeeper you found them via the bnbfinder Diamond Collection!