Moving to the Garden District in New Orleans
Moving to a new place can be both exciting and nerve-wracking. To help you feel more at ease in your new home, we’ve built this informative guide on what it’s like moving to the Garden District in New Orleans.
The canopy of oak trees lining the streets, the grand, historic mansions and the sounds, smells and overall atmosphere of the Garden District is so enticing that it makes one curious about all the new sights to see and experiences they’ve yet to discover throughout one of Uptown New Orleans most beloved neighborhoods.
Living in the Garden District Neighborhood
With a population of roughly 1,829 residents, the Garden District is cited as one of the best places to live in Louisiana. Originally, this area was one of several plantations which were sold off to wealthy Americans who didn’t want to live near Creole’s.
Established in 1833, the Garden District became part of the city of Lafayette and was named as such due to the large gardens surrounding homes, of which there were only two per block. About 20 years later, it became incorporated into the city of New Orleans.
Today, the vibe one gets from this neighborhood is an urban-suburban mix with an opulent aesthetic, lots of bars to satisfy your thirst, restaurants, cafés and parks for families and young professionals to enjoy.
Garden District also has added security in the form of the Garden District Security District (GDSD), which is patrolled by officers from the New Orleans Police Department (NOPD) to ensure the safety of those living in the area as well as assisting with emergency situations that may arise.
Additionally, residents living in here are happy that so many historic landmarks and other points of interest are easily accessible via walking or streetcar including a number of celebrity homes including actors, athletes, and writers.
Commander’s Palace Restaurant
Just a few feet away from the St. Charles Avenue streetcar line, the Commander’s Palace Restaurant is one of the Garden District’s many landmarks. Though this landmark doubles as a great place to sate your appetite, Commander’s Palace was originally established as a saloon in 1893 by the original owner, Emile Commander.
Over the course of a century, Commander’s Palace became a reputable restaurant catering to the distinguished families that live here in the Garden District.
Best known for their Haute creole cuisine, Commander’s Palace has obtained an array of awards, including the James Beard Foundation Awards for Best Chef and the Wine Spectator Grand Award, which comes as no surprise seeing how they frequently host a wine and cheese show, which has now been transformed in a virtual gathering of sorts.
Additional accolades include being listed as one of New Orleans best restaurants by Nola.com, best wine restaurants by Wine Enthusiast, and having the number one wine list in the nation by The Daily Meal.
Lafayette Cemetery No. 1
On Feb. 1 of 1972, the Lafayette Cemetery No. 1 was included in the National Register of Historic Places due to its architectural significance and social-historical importance.
Around 1,100 tombs, mausoleums and grave sites contain over 7,000 family members, including wall vaults containing the area’s first settlers of Irish and Germanic descent.
The intersecting avenues of this cemetery are especially unique due to the layout of the cemetery itself as well as being designed to accommodate the funeral processions.
Currently, the Lafayette Cemetery is closed for maintenance and routine repairs, but you’re free to take a completely immersive and interactive virtual tour using the Xplorit Virtual Tour tool!
Still Perkin’ Café
Right across the street from Lafayette Cemetery No. 1 is the Rink Shopping Center which has the Still Perkin’ Café. In 1884, this building was originally known as The Rink, which hosted the World’s Fair of that time known as the World Cotton Centennial Exposition.
Today, the establishment is known as Still Perkin’ Café, where you can get standard drinks such as iced coffees and mocha’s, or if you’re in the mood for a little nosh, you can try one of their delicious sandwiches or pastries for breakfast.
Hot Tin Bar
Originally a penthouse, the Hot Tin Bar is on top of the Pontchartrain Hotel located just off St. Charles Ave. The design was inspired by an artist’s 1940s loft. The Hot Tin Bar’s most significant feature is the outdoor balcony which gives one a beautiful 270-degree view of downtown New Orleans. A secluded terrace also offers a more intimate and romantic atmosphere with an aerial view of St. Charles Ave.
The interior of the bar showcases many knick-knacks, curiosities, and cozy seating so that no matter where you decide to sit, you’re bound to have a relaxing and pleasant evening. An ideal spot for dates and friendly gatherings, the Hot Tin Bar is one landmark you won’t want to miss.
At Zèle NOLA, there are many unique gifts and souvenirs specially crafted by over 100 local artists, makers, and entrepreneurs. From postcards and paintings to clothing, crafts, jewelry, and home décor, there are thousands of items you can purchase here as a gift for yourself or your loved ones.
Prices for these items vary from single-digit prices to four-digits, so you’re sure to find the perfect gift at an affordable price!
Joseph Merrick Jones House
The Joseph Merrick Jones House was originally owned by—you guessed it—Joseph Merrick Jones. A native New Orleanian and American lawyer in New Orleans, Jones served as the Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs for the U.S. State Department near the end of World War II.
Today, the house is owned by John Goodman, who moved to the area 30 years after filming The Big Easy. In the tv series drama Treme, the story follows ordinary residents living their lives post-Katrina and the many struggles they faced during that time.
Goodman’s portrayal of Creighton Bernette is based in part of real-life blogger Hinton Ashley Morris, whose series of post-Katrina blog posts concerning the destruction and rebuilding of New Orleans earned him notoriety as an advocate for New Orleanians frustrations.
Due to the exceptional performance in his role in Treme, many residents consider John Goodman a native son of New Orleans.
Garden District Book Shop
Within the Rink Shopping Center at the corner of Washington Avenue and Prytania Streets, the Garden District Book Shop, carries a large collection of new and used titles from cookbooks and guidebooks to fiction, non-fiction, children’s books and even signed first edition books from nationally acclaimed and local authors, including Anne Rice.
Guided Walking Tours
To experience much more than the Garden District and surrounding neighborhoods has to offer, think about taking a guided tour or a self-guided, GPS-enabled audio tour!
Sights that you’ll get to see while you’re touring around Uptown New Orleans include:
- Colonel Short’s Villa
- Briggs-Staub House
- Commander’s Palace Restaurant
- Toby’s Corner
- Manning House
- Brevard-Mahat-Rice House
- Payne-Strachan House
Living in the Garden District Neighborhood
Now that you’ve had a taste of what Uptown’s Garden District has in store for you, go out and explore! Now is the time for you to start living your best life and experience all that you can in New Orleans. From southern hospitality to good old-fashioned southern home cooking, you’re bound to fall in love with the Big Easy and all its charm.