A Photo Diary of New Orleans


A photo diary of New Orleans during Mardi Gras, documenting some of my favorite spots that I can't help but visit every time; with a locals touch. 

Photographed by me.

Julia Street Arts District, New Orleans, Louisiana.

Julia Street Arts District, New Orleans, Louisiana.

New Orleans Arts District, Julia Street

New Orleans Arts District, Julia Street


New Orleans at any given time is an experience of a lifetime; New Orleans at Mardi Gras is pure magic. My husband and I, being that we are Louisiana natives, we try to get back to Louisiana  {New Orleans specifically} to experience the magic of Mardi Gras when time permits.  When you are there, you are on no timeline. I've heard stories from numerous tourists that they lose all sense of time and plans when they visit. It's simply because you are greeted and lured into what is an unforgettable experience on every corner, in every cranny of every street. This city is alive and if you aren't careful, you may get a spell put on you by the voodoo queens and never leave. 



From some of the images above, you can see that the streets are filthy rich in uncaught broken Mardi Gras beads, dablooms, and spilt beverages. As the decadent Mardi Gras Floats pass by during the parades you hear people yelling, "Throw Me Something Mister!" to which the people on the floats throw beads and souvenirs at you. Between parades is when there is usually dancing in the streets, or a chance to slip away and take a reprieve from the mayhem and this is when I like to grab an espresso and a slice of sugar-crusted king cake to assist in keeping me awake until the evening parades. We also stopped at our good friend, Ron's who lives in the Garden District. Annually, Ron host what he calls a "Bacchus Boil" crawfish boil at his home. Everyone in the row of town homes pitch in for this extravagant celebration.  

Even the trees get Mardi Gras beads.

Even the trees get Mardi Gras beads.



TUESDAY A.M.: Andrew and I woke up early and started our day at one of my favorite restaurants, called Palace Cafe. I got a bowl of gumbo for breakfast and Andrew got his beloved bloody mary with his meal. Basically, anywhere you go to grab food or a drink will be buzzing with stories of New Orleans experiences and sharing in libation with acquainted strangers.



After breakfast, Andrew and I set out on foot to the Arts district before heading to his parents AirBNB for lunch and evening festivities. One of my favorite streets to hit up is  the Francoise Gilot Gallery on Julia Street.

"Among the popular Royal and MagazineStreets, Julia Street is the third New Orleans hotspot known for its extensive list of art galleries. Nicknamed "Gallery Row", Julia Street lies in the heart of the city's renovated and now-upscale Warehouse Arts District. 
Here you’ll find over a dozen art galleries that line both sides of Julia Street, occupying former storefronts, showrooms and other mercantile establishments that have been revamped, redecorated and ready for show."

"As part of the Warehouse District, Julia Street was originally established as an industrial area in the 19th century to store grain, coffee, and produce shipped through the Port of New Orleans. As commerce, trade, and industry practices evolved over time, the area's prosperity faded, and the once busy streets became eerily quiet and empty.

But the 1984 New Orleans World's Fair provided a much-needed catalyst to get the district back into commerce again. Old factories were renovated into luxury condos while street-level structures almost magically coalesced into a series of art galleries featuring the works of local and nationally known painters, sculptors and mixed media artists."

Andrew near Gallery Row, with remnants of his To-Go Bloody Mary (you can walk with alcohol in South Louisiana)

Andrew near Gallery Row, with remnants of his To-Go Bloody Mary (you can walk with alcohol in South Louisiana)


After viewing art galleries, around the corner, we stopped in at New Orleans' own Ace Hotel lobby bar for another drink. Here is where I got the Ace's version of a French 75 and it did not disappoint one bit. {I think their version is my favorite} 

I have to add that if you are feeling more in the mood more a coffee, right next to the lobby bar is a coffee bar sourced by Stumptown Coffee.


Lunchtime soon called after our afternoon stop in at the Ace, so off we went to Andrews' parents AirBnB. I realize that most of North Americans have heard of Popeye's where you can get the signature (fried chicken, mashed potatoes with gravy and buttermilk biscuits), but somehow in Louisiana, it tastes better. It just does, trust me! My mother-in-law also cooked her red beans and rice recipe which is close to what heaven on earth tastes like. After more parades, we made reservations at our favorite sushi spot "Tsunami" in the CBD. There, we ate our sushi-loving hearts out. If you get a chance to visit New Orleans, you'll want to make a reservation here.


On our last day in New Orleans, we walked in Jackson Square in the French Quarter. With the Mississippi River at your back and the smell of Cafe Du Monde's beignets and chickory coffee filling your senses, you can marvel at the beauty of the St. Louis Cathedral in front of you.

St. Louis Cathedral

St. Louis Cathedral

Me standing in the Garden District on our first day. Snapped by my friend, Rhea.

Me standing in the Garden District on our first day. Snapped by my friend, Rhea.

I hope you enjoyed my mini-catalogue series featuring my beloved New Orleans..stay tuned for more.

And as always..Laissaiz le bons temps rouler (let the good times roll)


Claire Arceri