Art Is Closer Than You Think In New Orleans

I went to the New Orleans Museum of Art the other day, which should be a post in itself full of the photos of paintings I took while I was there, but a trip the art museum is better experienced and best appreciated in person.  NOMA is at the end of Esplanade Avenue, about a 25-minute picturesque stroll from the #1 small hotel in New Orleans.  Art is closer than you think in New Orleans.  You’ll see.  Our tiny hotel is full of art.  Our lobby is a museum.

Here is just one photo of one painting that I particularly enjoy admiring when I visit the art museum.  I took a lot of photos the other day.  They’ll be peppering the blog in the next couple of installments.  I forget what this one is called.  I think it’s called “Pleasant Daydream.”  It’s called something like that.

Art in New Orleans: It's Closer Than You Think.
To me, this is what it’s like to live in New Orleans: it is a reverie.

You can’t see a single brushstroke.  It’s breathtaking in its virtuosity.

Some people say that Frau Schmitt’s and my hospitality is breathtaking in its virtuosity.  Frau Schmitt is the better half of this operation.  I always have to work at it.  Neither of us has any background in the hospitality industry.  We come from very different backgrounds.  What we know about hospitality is what we’ve always practiced in our own homes:

Be nice to people.  Be respectful.  Be gracious.  Share.

It’s not rocket science.  Reading reviews of other places to stay, in New Orleans and around the world, it seems to be more complicated than we make it out to be.  We love what we do.  We love where we live.  We hope that comes through to the people who choose to make La Belle Esplanade the headquarters for their New Orleans adventure.  As of today, we have 554 reviews on TripAdvisor.  544 of them are 5-star.  Ten of them have four stars.  Our last 4-star review occurred in December 2015.  Read the “very good” ones and compare them to the “excellent” ones.  There aren’t any horrifying revelations in them.



Let’s look at some of the art that graces the walls in La Belle Esplanade.  Art is closer than you think in New Orleans.  We have a beautiful commissioned painting in one of our steep stairwells:


Art is closer than you think in New Orleans.
This whale doesn’t lie. Art is everywhere in New Orleans. Just look at this guy’s clothes!


The chap who painted the painting of the whale above is my favorite artiste.  You may have the chance to meet him while you are here.  I’ve been a big fan of his for a long time.  The whale is one of his favorite subjects.  The whale’s name is Yippee.

Regular readers know that I love living in New Orleans.  Art is closer than you think in New Orleans.  I don’t just mean painting and music or drama or poetry.  I mean the art of living.  Lives are lived well in New Orleans.  I watch them gracefully unspool everyday.  I am often fortunate and blessed to be a part of the paths I cross as I go about my daily routine.  New Orleans is beautiful in a New Orleans state of mind.

If you don’t follow La Belle Esplanade’s Facebook page, you should.  I’ve started posting a series of videos featuring me, your humble narrator, reading short snippets of stories.  I keep meaning to put them up on our Youtube channel, but I don’t always get around to it.  I’m a busy micro-hotelier, you know.  Here’s an example of the one:


It gets even better after this episode.  If you’ve spent time with me over breakfast you are justly correct to assume that I have an eccentric taste in literature.  My taste in literature is as eccentric as my taste in fedoras.

If you haven’t spent time with me over breakfast, here is your chance to hear my mellifluous voice and accent as I crack myself up and chuckle along with the plot and try to comment afterward on what I’ve chosen to read, usually at random from my extensive library of weird books.

Yep, it’s a video series of a man reading a book.  If that doesn’t get you excited, nothing will.  If that doesn’t get you to follow La Belle Esplanade’s Facebook page or  to subscribe to our Youtube channel nothing will.

We also regularly update our Instagram account, if you like to use Instagram.  Just search for La Belle Esplanade. There is only one.

Visiting New Orleans is something that can’t be expressed in words.  Art is closer than you think in New Orleans.  It is in the very air.  Art plays out on the streets and the sidewalks.  You never know what artistic surprises, intended or not, you’ll find in New Orleans.  This is why no one ever says their visit is too long.  Anyone who is bored in New Orleans is either spending too much time in the tourist trap French Quarter or they have a hole in their imagination.

New Orleans is a city of pure imagination.

If you are thinking of visiting New Orleans.  I know the #1 place to stay in our magical city.  Good memories, the best kind, are made every day on Esplanade Avenue.  We don’t call our tiny personalized hotel La Belle Esplanade for nothing.  It really is beautiful.

Have a great New Orleans day, wherever you happen to find yourself!  When you are ready to visit New Orleans and get the authentic experience, you know where to find us.

À votre santé,

-La Belle Esplanade

…ranked the #1 place to stay in New Orleans and in Louisiana, #3 in the U.S., and the #17 place to stay in the whole world.

Wednesday, July 4, 2018:  It is Independence Day today during New Orleans’ tricentennial.  300 years of history.  It’s good to be alive in this wonderful city that Frau Schmitt and I call home.  Don’t be a stranger.  Visit New Orleans like a New Orleanian.

La Belle Esplanade: art is everywhere in New Orleans.
Your New Orleans goodwill ambassador is always ready to make a recommendation about books or about what to do in New Orleans.  Expect the unexpected!