One of the most talked about hotels in history is finally reopening its doors. Following the days after Hurricane Katrina battered New Orleans in 2005, the Hyatt Regency New Orleans was the refuge spot for recovery crews, city officials and medical personnel. Days later, the hotel closed its doors, but few will ever forget the images of blown-out windows, shattered glass, torn curtains, and the hotel's shredded American flag that blew in the wind against the former front doors. Now, six years and $275 million later, the iconic New Orleans hotel is re-opening its doors.
The 32-story hotel opens its doors today with nearly 1,200 new guest rooms, 200,000 square feet of meeting space, and a 7,600-square-foot freestanding restaurant run by James Beard award-winning New Orleans chef, John Besh. The hotel, still anchored to the famous Louisana Superdome, lost its boxy decor and went for a trendy, more contemporary design.
"It's a transformation," said Michael Smith, general manager of the hotel.
Inside the new Hyatt New Orleans you'll now find a Starbucks and 24-hour fresh market and convenience store, a 20,000-square-foot outdoor pool and deck, spa, fitness center, concierge and business services, and four dining venues.
The hotel is part of an $8 billion economic development in the city of New Orleans that also includes a new trolly system, new medical district, new Superdome embellishments, and new housing and retail, many of which is located across the street from the Hyatt.
Room rates at the New Orleans Hyatt Regency start at $159 a night for weekdays and $219 a night for weekends.
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