The many names that New Orleans is known by such as the "Big Easy'' or the "Crescent City'' bring visitors from around the world. There are many reasons for this. The city lies on the Mississippi River and is a major US port for cargo and pleasure vessels. There is the French Quarter with its historic buildings, jazz clubs and great food that are also a big draw. Many attractions are featured in the city, but the most well known party in New Orleans is Mardi Gras. It has been going on since the 1700's and visitors are in awe over the many floats and balls.
The Warehouse District is one of the areas that has undergone several transformations since it was built. It began as the industrial part of town that housed grain, coffee and produce. This street was teeming with prosperity during the nineteenth century when the ships would come into the Port of New Orleans. While the port is still a major shipping area the buildings were abandoned when commerce and trade practices changed. Containers replaced the need for warehouses so the historical old buildings were left empty.
There was a resurgence of the neighborhood in the 1970's when the Contemporary Arts Center opened. This was a 10,000 square foot area that displays art plus performances of music, dance and theater. The old warehouses were the perfect place to create and present the artist's work. There are over twenty five galleries that encompass this area today. Julia Street is the main area and it is where the first Saturday of each month has a gallery hop. The galleries in the area also sell art and often feature more than one local artist.
Museums have made their way into the Warehouse District as well. The most popular is the National World War II Museum that continues to grow their exhibits. Visitors can find veterans that act as docents; they give tours and answer any questions the guests have.
Although it is still known as the Warehouse District to many, it is called the New Orleans Art District today. Over one million people have visited this part of New Orleans. Visitors can find more than just art and museums when they tour the Warehouse District.
Many fine restaurants call this neighborhood home. Emeril opened his first restaurant in this area. The Louisiana cuisine is represented at many of the establishments. Michaul's has dancing at their restaurant and fresh seafood is served at Rio Mar. If guests like sushi it can be found at the Rock-n-Sake and there is great jazz music at some of the clubs. Cajun cuisine and music can be found at clubs like Mulate's.
There are chain hotels like Hampton Inn, Embassy Suites and the Courtyard in the Warehouse District. However, if guests would like a boutique hotel or one within walking distance of the French Quarter they are available in the Warehouse District as well. They all offer deluxe accommodations with the latest technology such as high speed internet and cable TV.