Your man in his headquarters

How to Celebrate New Orleans Mardi Gras

Mardi Gras in New Orleans is more and better than you think.  It is more and better in real life than anything you’ve seen in movies, on TV, or read about in books or in pulp magazines.  If you want to learn how to celebrate New Orleans Mardi Gras, stay a week from Mardi Gras Day to the day after Ash Wednesday.  You can’t leave on the day after Mardi Gras.  No one deserves that much penance after Mardi Gras Day.  Collect yourself, get your memory in order, have a nice dinner, and leave New Orleans two days after Mardi Gras Day, itself.  You’ll thank me for this advice.

Take it from someone who knows what he’s talking about:

Your man in his headquarters and humble narrator at his desk in La Belle Esplanade’s lobby.
Your man in his headquarters and humble narrator at his desk in La Belle Esplanade’s lobby.


Mardi Gras Day is the mot magical day of the year.  All the parades that happen before Mardi Gras Day, those are just an appetizer. Here is a link to the parade schedule for 2020.  The more Mardi Gras you get, the richer your memories will be.  Mardi Gras season is New Orleans on steroids.  Mardi Gras is a community holiday, a family holiday.  We know what you think about New Orleans debauchery.  That’s on Bourbon Street.  The New Orleanians you’ll find drunk on Bourbon Street are the people who are working.  Everyone else if from out of town.  Get yourself into the real New Orleans outside the French Quarter and you’ll learn how to really celebrate New Orleans Mardi Gras and what it means to fall in love with this wonderful city we call home.  You belong here.

Mardi Gras is a season, not just one day.  Mardi Gras season starts on January 6.  Come to New Orleans any long, relaxing 5-night weekend during Mardi Gras season; three nights, minimum.  Catch New Orleans’ spirit.  Get yourself into an authentic New Orleans state of mind.  Visit like you belong here.  Nobody outside New Orleans knows the many, many secrets the city lets loose between January 6 and Lent.  Come find out for yourself.


Get your good self down here for some Mardi Gras magic. You are on the right website.  Here is a link to our calendar.  Pick your dates.

La Belle Esplanade has been ranked the #1 small craft hotel in New Orleans since April 2014.  We have also been rated #2 in the United States and #16 in the world.  La Belle Esplanade only has five rooms.  La Belle Esplanade only has .001388% of the hotel rooms in New Orleans.  Only a lucky few on any given day can stay at La Belle Esplanade to explore real New Orleans neighborhoods on a personal level.  The best New Orleans memories begin at La Belle Esplanade.

2019 Travelers' Choice
The people have spoken, awarding La Belle Esplanade within the top five small hotels in the United States two years in a row.

Here is a link to what Mardi Gras was like at La Belle in 2018.

Here is a brief “How To Celebrate New Orleans Mardi Gras” video tutorial from our YouTube Channel:

When you are ready to explore the authentic New Orleans off the usual tourist treadmill, we hope you’ll think of La Belle Esplanade.  Follow us on Facebook.  We post 2, 3, 4, 5 times a day.  Follow us on Instagram.  Read this blog and also read our sister blog that La Belle Esplanade sponsors.  That blog is called, “The New Orleans State of Mind.”  Be a New Orleanian when you’re in New Orleans.

La Belle Esplanade Outside
Live in a colorful New Orleans for a few days. It’ll make you feel better.

Wednesday, December, 25, 2019 (yes, Christmas Day):  La Belle Esplanade is a small craft hotel.  We only have five suites.  Our operation is run by the owners: two unofficial New Orleans goodwill ambassadors with the street cred to prove it.  One of them is the person who writes these blog posts.  The other one is the better half of this operation.  If you want to make some good authentic New Orleans memories that will last you a lifetime, La Belle Esplanade is your best choice.  If you want an off-the-rack experience that’s good for a hangover, there are plenty of other places you can stay.

We only have five suites.  Plan ahead and book early!

You can see this: