[Hot Tin, Website]

Top Ten Things to do in the CBD and Warehouse District

07:00 January 15, 2024
By: Abby Palopoli

New Orleans' Central Business District is defined by high-rise buildings, upscale shopping, sleek restaurants, luxury hotels, theaters, and more. While Sunday afternoons bring Saints fans to Caesar's Superdome and carry them down Julia Street for nighttime celebrations, Monday mornings bring business leaders and medical professionals downtown before unwinding for a night of classy dining and locals entertainments.

The Warehouse District houses numerous places to eat that celebrate Louisiana cuisine and set the stage for your culinary escapades throughout the city. New Orleans is uniquely vibrant and busy with locals and tourists flooding the streets during Mardi Gras and every other day for great food, music, and fun. Need to know how to fill your day in the CBD? Here are 10 things to do that any New Orleanian will tell you.

What to do in the CBD/Warehouse District

1. Caesar's Superdome

1500 Sugar Bowl Dr., (800) 756-7074, caesarssuperdome.com
[Caesar's Superdome, Facebook]
Caesar's Superdome brings thousands of tourists to downtown New Orleans every year for Saints games and celebrity concerts. They host a variety of events that range from parades, parties, fundraisers, concerts, and more. They have club seating for private events and numerous food and beverage stands to visit during halftime.

Coming up, thousands fans will come see Taylor Swift perform on October 24-27. There's always a game, concert, or special event at Caesar's Superdome or Smoothie King Center throughout the year, so check their websites and buy your tickets!

2. Willa Jean

611 O'Keefe Ave., (504) 509-7334, willajean.com
[Willa Jean, Website]
Willa Jean is in the center of CBD serving fresh baked goods and delicious Southern breakfast staples. This chic cafe has great teas, home blend coffees, and cocktails for thirsty early birds. Their bakery sells rustic breads, pastries, cookies, and cakes that will turn your sweet tooth permanent. It's the perfect spot for Sunday brunch or a weekday meal, and it's an absolute must in downtown NOLA.

Known for their hot-out-the-oven chocolate chip cookies and classic New Orleans fare, Willa Jean constantly brings loyal customers and new fans to their door. Their signature dish BBQ shrimp toast with gulf shrimp, NOLA-style BBQ sauce, and burrata cheese on top of grilled sourdough bread will knock you off your feet with flavor.

3. Julia Street

[Photo by Gustavo Escanelle]

Downtown NOLA calls all art lovers and history buffs to Julia Street for evening strolls through the extensive list of art galleries, rivaling that of Magazine Street and Royal Street. This historic New Orleans street is the center for gallery viewing, featuring local artists as well as nationally known artists.

Special events like White Linen Night comes to Julia Street annually on the first Saturday in August and Jammin' on Julia, the Spring art walk, every first Saturday in May. Julia Street is just a short walk away from the French Quarter, so come visit its galleries after you dine in the Quarter.

4. Hot Tin

2031 St. Charles Ave. FL 14, (504) 323-1500, hottinbar.com
[Hot Tin, Website]
Sitting atop the Pontchartrain Hotel is Hot Tin, a special New Orleans bar that offers rooftop views overlooking the lively Crescent City and drifting Mississippi. Choose from their select specialty cocktails and sit inside the lounge with romance and eclectic class seeping from the walls.

The interior is designed to model a 1940s artist's loft with curiosities hanging from the walls and intimate indoor and outdoor seating. It's a perfect date night destination with a sophisticated and chic atmosphere sure to impress any guest.

5. The Saenger Theatre

1111 Canal St., (504) 525-1052, saengernola.com
[The Saenger Theatre, Facebook]
If you've lived in New Orleans for years or you're a seasoned tourist, then you've certainly frequented the Saenger Theatre in downtown New Orleans. The Saenger is New Orleans' premier performing arts facility that hosts a variety of musicals, plays, symphonies, concerts, discussions, and more. Buy your tickets for their upcoming shows and take a picture in front of their signature marquee on Canal Street.

The Saenger is a beautiful construction that glistens in its original 1927 charm. Take a seat in the auditorium and notice the intricate details of the soaring starlight ceiling and beautiful Greek revival architecture during intermission. Travel through time and experience a touch of class in downtown NOLA when out for a night of musical theatre.

6. Audubon Aquarium

1 Canal St., (504) 565-3033, audubonnatureinstitute.org/aquarium
[Audubon Institute, Facebook]
The Audubon Aquarium is the perfect sea-escape for your family during hot summer months or any time of year you want to enter Nemo's world. Come face to face with over 3,600 animals and 250 species. The aquarium just underwent a major renovation and reopened its doors in June last year with the new home for the Audubon Insectarium and a new main lobby.

Whether you visited the Aquarium yesterday or 10 years ago, mark your calendars to enter its doors again to be amazed by the aquatic wonders of the world. It's a whole lot of finny fun!

7. New Orleans Riverfront

[Wikimedia Commons, Infrogmation of New Orleans]

Stroll down the New Orleans Riverfront and taste the salty winds from the winding Mississippi. There are multiple spots to enjoy river views, but the ones in downtown New Orleans near the Spanish Plaza and Woldenberg Park are the ones that will give you a great landscape for your viewing.

After a night out on the town, let the sounds of the steamboats carry you along the remarkable river that touches 10 different states! Make sure to also take a walk through NOLA's fabulous Riverwalk Outlet Center.

8. Josephine Estelle

600 Carondelet St., (504) 930-3070, josephineestelle.com

[Josephine Estelle, Website]

Josephine Estelle is a Southern-inspired Italian restaurant with all the elegance and charm you'd find in Italy. Award-winning chefs Andy Ticer and Michael Hudman named their restaurant after each of their daughters, which signals the warmth and love that touches their menu.

They use seasonal, fresh ingredients, homemade pasta, and family recipes with a modern twist for breakfast, brunch, lunch, or dinner. Join them for the pasta happy hour happening Monday through Thursday from 3 to 6 p.m. Book a table for your Thanksgiving meal or reserve a spot at their pasta making class!

9. National WWII Museum

945 Magazine St., (504) 528-1944, nationalww2museum.org

[National WWII Museum, Website]

New Orleans is proudly home to the National WWII Museum where people travel the country to learn more about the American experience in the second World War. The museum's mission is to educate and inspire visitors with stories of heroism, promoting a stronger remembrance of the American effort in the war and a greater reverence for veterans.

Uncover the history behind special exhibits and leave with a greater understanding of the impacts made by past generations. This nationally renowned military history museum also explores the postwar years in its new Liberation Pavilion.

10. The Sazerac House

101 Magazine St, (504) 910-0100, sazerachouse.com

[The Sazerac House, Website]

If you're the type of person to run away at the slightest utterance of "museum," don't run too far from the Sazerac House. It is a unique museum brimming with sweet libations and historic charm. Here you'll take part in the cocktail culture of New Orleans through interactive cocktail exhibits, spirit tastings, and immersive tours.

The Sazerac, a classic whiskey cocktail, gained its popularity and fame in New Orleans in the 1850s. Witness how the Sazerac became embedded in the traditions and drinking culture of New Orleans and learn about distilling Sazerac Rye on guided tours while enjoying complimentary samples. What better museum to go to than the one that hands you a free drink?

Escape to Downtown NOLA

New Orleans' Warehouse District welcomes you in the morning with bright cafes and a trendy brunch, sends you off in the afternoon for gallery viewing and gameday tailgates, and bids you goodnight with swanky bar scenes and refined dinner menus. No matter the time of day or season in which you come, there is always something brewing in downtown NOLA that keeps the tourists coming and the locals staying put!

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