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Guide to Jazz Fest: Weekend 1

jazz fest posterNew Orleans plays host to one of the best music festivals in the country this weekend – and we’re more than ready to greet guests who are coming from around the world to experience it! The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, which takes place annually at the Fair Grounds Race Course, is the celebration of the music and culture of New Orleans and Louisiana. Jazz Fest has grown into an internationally recognized event throughout the years, bringing in some of the best all-time musical performances from current and past generations alike. Jazz Fest takes place on two consecutive weekends, starting Friday, April 24th. Find our guide to the first weekend of Jazz Fest below!

Jazz Fest Weekend 1: Top Musical Highlights

Friday, April 25 – Santana, The Avett Brothers, Public Enemy, Gregory Porter, Ruben Blades & Roberto Delgado Orchestra, Honey Island Swamp Band, Irvin Mayfield & the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra.

Saturday, April 26 – Phish, Robert Plant and the Sensational Space Shifters, Robin Thicke, Dukes of Dixieland 40th Anniversary Celebration, Anders Osborne, Keb’ Mo’, Big Freedia

Sunday, April 27 – Eric Clapton, Vampire Weekend, Charlie Wilson, Rodriguez, Galactic, Irma Thomas, Preservation Hal Jazz Band, John Boutte, Newbirth Brass Band

Jazz Fest Parades

Every day of Jazz Fest, you’ll catch one of the most unique aspects of Jazz Fest: parades. Circling around the Jazz Fest Grounds, you’ll run into Mardi Gras Indians, marching and brass bands, and various social aid and pleasure clubs. This weekend features the Mahogony Brass Band, João do Pife of Caruaru – BrazilStoney Creek Drum and DancersWashitaw Nation and Wild Mohicans Mardi Gras IndiansGinga Mundo Capoeira of Bahia, and more!

Jazz Fest Food

For your first weekend at Jazz Fest, we recommend sampling some of the classic New Orleans dishes that you can only find here! Start with an Alligator Pie from Cajun Nights Catering or a Crawfish Sausage from Vaucresson Sausage Company. Next, delve into Pheasant, Quail, and Andouille Gumbo from Prejean’s Restaurant, and slurp it all down with Rose-mint iced tea or, of course, some delicious Abita Beer. For more incredible and delectable treats, check out Thrillest’s picks for the best food at Jazz Fest.

While we’re excited to welcome Jazz Festers this weekend to a sold-out Bienville House, we still have space open for the second weekend of Jazz Fest. Book with your favorite French Quarter hotel today!

French Quarter Festival 2014

French Quarter Festival 2014Since we are located in the heart of the French Quarter, one of our favorite festivals of the year is French Quarter Festival! Not only is this fabulous four-day event completely FREE but it brings in some of the very best in music and food to the bustling heart of the city of New Orleans. French Quarter Fest 2014 kicks off Thursday, April 10th and lasts until Sunday, April 13th. Known as New Orleans’ largest free festival, French Quarter Fest is celebrating its 31st year of existence.

French Quarter Fest 2014: Music

Bigger and better than ever before, this year’s French Quarter Festival brings more than 80 musicians to 20 stages spread throughout the French Quarter. For the first time since 1987, the lineup includes a headlining appearance from legendary Dr. John.

Other top names from the French Quarter Fest 2014 lineup:

  • Lionel Ferbos and the Louisiana Shakers
  • Chris Owens
  • Irvin Mayfield & The Jazz Playhouse Revue
  • Tim Laughlin
  • Irma Thomas
  • Charmaine Neville
  • The Dukes of Dixieland
  • Donald Harrison, Jr.
  • The Ronnie Kole Show
  • Jeremy Davenport
  • Joe Krown, Walter “Wolfman” Washington, & Russell Batiste
  • The Dixie Cups
  • Blues Masters featuring “Big Al” Carson
  • Lena Prima
  • Dash Rip Rock
  • Astral Project
  • New Birth Brass Band
  • + Many, many more!

Check out the official French Quarter Fest lineup here.

French Quarter Fest 2014: Food

This year’s French Quarter Festival features more than 60 different food vendors, including Arnaud’s, Galatoire’s, and Restaurant R’evolution. The wide variety of food available will include plenty of local favorites like alligator sausage, po-boys, sno-balls and daiquiris.

Check out the full list of French Quarter Fest 2014 vendors here.

We’re thrilled to welcome all our guests one of the best weekends of the year. If you weren’t able to make a reservation in time, there’s always next year… We’re not going anywhere anytime soon!


Welcome WrestleMania XXX to New Orleans!

WWE WrestleMania XXX New OrleansWrestleMania XXX is coming to New Orleans, and we’re more than ready! New Orleans has completely filled up for the highly-anticipated weekend. And when we say completely, we mean it. According to an informal survey done by the New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau, downtown New Orleans hotels will have 99% occupancy on Friday, 100% occupancy on Saturday, and 98% occupancy on Sunday. The city of New Orleans is practically sold out! The other few weekends New Orleans expects sell-outs is during the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, the French Quarter Festival and the Essence Festival.


Celebrate WrestleMania XXX in New Orleans

WrestleMania is celebrating its 30th year in New Orleans, with the main festivities taking place on April 30, 2014. Taking place in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, fans will gather to catch the world’s biggest wrestling champions battle it out to take home the WWE world champion title. The headlining act includes six-time World Champion Batista vs. top-rated wrestler Randy Orton. You can also expect appearances from Brock “The Beast” Lesnar and host Hulk Hogan.


Catch the Wrestlemania XXX Action Live

Wrestlemania XXX tickets are still available starting at $25.00. “Gold Circle” VIP packages are priced at $2,000. You can also catch WrestleMania XXX from the comfort of your own home, as WrestleMania is one of the world’s most widely watched Pay Per View events on cable television. We’re also certain there will be plenty of French Quarter bars who will be tuned into the event.

Can’t get enough WWE wrestling action? Catch one of these events going also going on this weekend:

  • WrestleMania Axxess – a four-day interactive WWE festival at Ernest N. Morial Convention Center
  • The 2014 WWE Hall of Fame induction at the Smoothie King Center
  • “Monday Night Raw” at the Smoothie King Center

We’re happy to welcome our many WWE WrestleMania fans to New Orleans this weekend. It’s sure to be a “smashing” good time!



Hogs for the Cause 2014

Hogs for the Cause New OrleansWhen: Friday, April 28, 2014 and Saturday, April 29, 2014

Where: New Orleans City Park Festival Grounds

What: Join us for one of the most talked about BBQ events south of the Mason Dixon Line: Hogs for the Cause 2014! In its fifth year, this New Orleans food festival boasts 90 barbecue competitors from around the country, with plenty of chances to taste the chef’s delicious BBQ creations and enjoy some live New Orleans music.

Can’t get enough? Lucky you! The festival lasts two days, and takes place outdoors in the majestic New Orleans City Park.


Hogs for the Cause’s Amazing New Orleans Food

The festival features 90 teams, all competing to be crowned the Louisiana pork champion. Attendees are able to sample the food, and vote for their favorite team through donations. The main competition takes place Friday night – the Ben Sarrat, Jr. “High on the Hog” Cookoff. The Champion is based on the winner of the Whole Hog; Pork Butt/Shoudler, and Pourpourri. Winners are also chosen from Best Sauce, Fundraising Champion, and Fan Favorite. Don’t miss this feasting opportunity!


Live Music Lineup at Hogs for the Cause

This year’s festival line-up includes some of the best in country, rock, and Big Easy tradition including Pat Green, The Hold Steady, North Mississippi All Stars, Houndmouth, Hurray for Riff Raff, Dumpstaphunk, Rosco Bandana, Benjamin Booker, Earphunk and more! With two awesome spots for live music, the NOLA Brewing Stage and the Capital One Bank Stage, enjoy your nosh while listening to great music!


Support Hogs for the Cause to Fight Pediatric Brain Cancer

When Ben Sarrat Jr. was only 4-years-old, he was diagnosed with an incurable brain tumor. While Becker Hall and Rene Louapre had already been working on a vision for Hogs for the Cause, they found their cause behind the event after meeting Ben and his family. The first year was a huge success, although, tragically, Ben lost his battle with cancer a week before the event’s second year. Becker and Rene still work to improve Hogs for a Cause every year, raising more money to help families facing the  high financial burdens of taking care of a child with brain cancer.

Buku Music + Art Project 2014

New Orleans Festival Season is Here

With the arrival of spring in New Orleans comes warm weather, sunshine, and the arrival of festival season. By far one of the best times of the year to visit New Orleans, festival season brings us French Quarter Fest, the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, and one of the newest festivals in New Orleans: the Buku Music + Art Project.  Only in its third year, this New Orleans festival brings in some of the biggest names in electronic, hip-hop and locals acts. The festival sold out over 12,000 tickets in 2013 with headliners Kendrick Lamar, Kid Cudi, Calvin Harris, Major Lazer and more. With Buku Music + Art Project 2014 getting only bigger and better, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see it sell out again.


Buku Music + Art Project 2014 Location

The Buku Music + Art Project is taking place March 21 +22, 2014. The festival is held on the New Orleans Riverfront at Blaine Kern’s Mardi Gras World.  The location makes for a truly unique New Orleans festival experience, with Mardi Gras World being home to floats and sculptures from decades of Mardi Gras parades.

The festival features four stages: The Power Plant, which sits between the active New Orleans Public Belt Railroad and the Mississippi River; the Float Den, which is located inside a Mardi Gras float manufacturing warehouse; the Ballroom, which is a concert hall transported into festivals grounds; and the new Back Alley, an underground dance party offering views of the Crescent City Connection bridge towering over the Mississippi River.

Buku Music + Art Project New Orleans Festivals

Buku Music + Art Project 2014 Line-Up

The Flaming Lips  - David Guetta – Ellie Goulding – Kaskade – Zedd – Nas (20th Anniversary of Illmatic) – Chromeo – Explosions in the Sky – Zeds Dead – Tyler, the Creator – Bone Thugs-N-Harmony – Sleigh Bells – The Glitch Mob – Pusha T – Baauer B2B RL Grime – Schoolboy Q – Beats Antique – Chance the Rapper – Phantogram – Carnage – Danny Brown – Seth Troxler – Skream – Wavves – Paper Diamond – Lotus – Miami Horror – Griz – DJ Snake – Clockwork  - many more!

Visit the Buku Music + Art Project website to view the full lineup.


Buku Music + Art Project 2014 Tickets

General Admission Single Day Tickets: $89.50

General Admission Regular Pass: $169.50

VIP Single Day Tickets: $209.50

VIP Regular Pass: $399.50

Purchase tickets to Buku Music + Art Project 2014


Sunday Gospel Brunch at House of Blues New Orleans

House of Blues New Orleans Sunday Gospel BrunchIf you’ve ever had the opportunity to visit New Orleans before, you know that music is the lifeline that runs through the city and keeps its culture pumping. It’s no surprise that House of Blues has decided to set up camp in the heart of our famous French Quarter, right across the street from our French Quarter hotel.  The House of Blues New Orleans offers incredible shows to tourists and locals alike. One of our personal favorite events? The Sunday Gospel Brunch at House of Blues.


House of Blues New Orleans Address

House of Blues New Orleans
225 Decatur Street
New Orleans, LA 70130
(504) 310-4999


Sunday Gospel Brunch at House of Blues Schedule

10:00am – Seating
10:30am – Show and Buffet Commencement
11:30am – Show and Buffet Finale

Experience both traditional and contemporary Gospel songs performed by local talent at the Gospel Brunch at House of Blues. Presented by Kirk Franklin, the Gospel Brunch takes places every Sunday at 10:00am. Not only does the event feature the amazing gospel songs selected by Kirk Franklin himself, but also an incredible all-you-eat buffet!


Sunday Gospel Brunch at House of Blues Menu

Croissants, Muffins, Assorted Danish

Tortellini Salad, Assorted Fruit, Chinese Chicken Salad, House of Blues Salad, Peel and Eat Shrimp with Cocktail Sauce

Scrambled Eggs, Bacon and Sausage, Breakfast Potatoes with Sauteed Onions and Peppers, Creole Chicken Jambalaya, Southwest Scrambled Eggs, Biscuits and Gravy, Smoked BBQ Chicken, Build Your Own Mac and Cheese

Carving Station, Chicken and Waffles, Made-To-Order Omelet Station

Cookies, Pecan Caramel Sticky Buns, Assorted Dessert Squares, White Chocolate Banana Bread Pudding


Don’t miss out on an a classic New Orleans event that’s good for the soul as well as the stomach!


Lundi Gras Concerts 2014

Are you coming for Mardi Gras 2014 in New Orleans? Need to know what’s going on in NOLA? Bienville House is here to help! While everyday during Mardi Gras is full of events and celebration, Lundi Gras may take the cake. Leading up to the ever-famous Fat Tuesday on March 4, 2014, concert halls across New Orleans fill their stages with some of the best local New Orleans music to ring in the big day. Many of these concerts go all night, as many experience the Lundi Gras tradition of staying up all night until the sun rises. Learn below some of the best Lundi Gras Concerts for 2014.


Lundi Gras Concerts 2014

Monday, March 03, 2014

Lundi Gras Concerts New Orleans Mardi Gras 2014


501 Napoleon Ave.
New Orleans, LA 70115

Doors open: 10:00pm
Showtime: 11:00
Price: $46.00
General Admission/Standing Room Only



House of Blues New Orleans
225 Decatur St.
New Orleans, LA 70130

Doors open: 8:30pm
Showtime: 9:30pm
Price: $37.00/General Admission, $90.00/Balcony Seating



Mardi Gras World East
1380 Port of New Orleans Pl
New Orleans, LA 70130

Doors open: 9:00pm
Showtime: 9:00pm
Price: $30.00



Republic New Orleans
828 S Peters St
New Orleans, LA 70130

Doors open: After Orpheus Parade (About 9:30pm)
Showtime: One hour after doors open
Price: $20.00/General Admission Early Bird, $50/VIP



508 Frenchmen St
New Orleans, LA 70116

Doors open: 10:00pm
Showtime: 10:00pm
Price: $40.00

532 Frenchmen St
New Orleans, LA 70116

Doors open: 10:00pm
Showtime: 10:00pm
Price: $15.00

Don’t miss your chance to catch the excitement of Lundi Gras concerts in New Orleans. Buy your tickets now, and happy Mardi Gras!

Mardi Gras 2014 New Orleans Parade Schedule

Mardi Gras 2014 in New OrleansMardi Gras 2014 in New Orleans is just around the corner… have you made your plans yet? Stay in the heart of the French Quarter at Bienville House Hotel for the ultimate Pardi on Decatur street. Find yourself in the center of the action, walking distance from all the best parades spots. Find relaxation in our luxuriously equipped suites when you need a moment to step away from it all.

Haven’t mapped out your route yet? Explore the full Mardi Gras parade schedule from Thursday, February 27, 2014 to March 4, 2014 below!


Mardi Gras 2014 Parade Schedule

Thursday, February 27, 2014


  • Knights of Babylon                                              5:45pm
  • Krewe of Muses                                                    6:30pm
  • Knights of Chaos                                                  6:30pm

Friday, February 28, 2014


  • Krewe of Hermes                                                 6:00pm
  • Krewe d’Etat                                                          6:30pm
  • Krewe of Morpheus                                            7:00pm


  • Krewe of Selene                                                   6:30pm


  • Krewe of Centurions                                          7:00pm

Saturday March 1, 2014


  • Krewe of NOMTOC                                              10:45am


  • Krewe of Iris                                                            11:00am
  • Krewe of Tucks                                                      12:00pm


  • Krewe of Endymion                                              4:15pm


  • Krewe of Iris                                                            6:30pm

Sunday, March 2, 2014


  • Krewe of Okeanos                                                11:00am
  • Krewe of Mid-City                                               11:45am
  • Krewe of Thoth                                                     12:00pm
  • Krewe of Bacchus                                                 5:15pm


  • Krewe of Napoleon                                            5:30pm

Monday, March 3, 2014 - Lundi Gras


  • Krewe of Proteus                                                 5:15pm
  • Krewe of Orpheus                                               6:00pm


  • Krewe of Hera                                                      6:15pm
  • Krewe of Zeus                                                      7:00pm

Tuesday, March 4, 2014 – Mardi Gras Day (Fat Tuesday)


  • Krewe of Zulu                                                      8:00am
  • Krewe of Rex                                                      10:00am
  • Krewe of Elks Orleans                                     follows
  • Krewe of Crescent City                                   follows


  • Krewe of Grela                                                   10:00am


  • Krewe of Argus                                                   10:00am
  • Krewe of Jefferson                                           follows
  • Krewe of Elks Jefferson                                 follows


  • Krewe of Lyra                                                    10:00am


Use our Mardi Gras 2014 parade schedule to ensure you catch all your favorite Mardi Gras parades in New Orleans!

The History of the Mardi Gras King Cake

King Cake for Mardi Gras in New Orleans

If you’ve ever been in New Orleans during that oh-so festive time of year we like to call Carnival Season (leading up to Mardi Gras Day), you’ve probably experienced the joy of tasting a King Cake. While the rest of the country is still mourning the end of the Christmas holiday season, we’re celebrating the arrival of Carnival season in New Orleans. One of the biggest signs it’s Carnival season in New Orleans? Walk into any bakery or grocery store, and you’ll find a King Cake — a delicious purple, gold, and green braided cinnamon cake. While many follow the custom of eating King Cakes for Mardi Gras, they are often unaware of why and how this custom came to be.


History of the King Cake for Mardi Gras in New Orleans

Carnival season in New Orleans begins the Twelfth Night after Christmas on January 6th each year. As told by the Christian faith, the Twelfth Night is referred to as the Feast of the Epiphany, and celebrates the coming of the wise men bearing gifts to the Christ Child. It represents a time of feasting and fun. The popular custom of baking a special cake in honor of the three kings has taken place throughout the years, thus the creation of a “King’s Cake.”

Over the years, King Cake decorations have become more and more festive. At first, the cake remained just a simple ring of dough with light decoration. The basic King Cake has grown to a braided dough with colored frosting and sprinkles of purple, gold, and green – the traditional colors of Mardi Gras, meaning justice (purple), power (gold), and faith (green).


New Orleans Mardi Gras King Cake Customs

Many restaurants like to create their special version of a King Cake, resulting in various King Cake tasting competitions throughout New Orleans.  The 2014 King Cake Festival in New Orleans was held this year on Sunday, February 9, 2014 at Champions Square at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, benefiting Ochsner Hospital.

Each King Cake comes with a small plastic, pink “baby.” According to custom, whoever cuts the slice of cake that has the baby in it, has to purchase the next King Cake.  This process repeats until the end of Carnival season, on Mardi Gras Day, which is Tuesday, March 4, 2014 this year. Due to choking hazards, many King Cakes now come with the baby on the outside, giving the buyer of the cake the option to add it to the cake.

2014 NBA All-Star Weekend in New Orleans

2014 NBA All-Star Game in New OrleansDon’t miss the 2014 NBA All-Star Weekend in New Orleans!

Catch the excitement of the 2014 NBA All-Star Weekend by booking a stay at our French Quarter hotel, Bienville House! Watch the league’s star players from the Eastern Conference be matched up against the star players from the Western Conference in the NBA All-Star Game. Enjoy the best of the best step up to the challenge in dunk contests, shooting challenges, and three-point playoffs! Catch all that and more February 13-16  at the 2014 NBA All-Star Weekend in the Big Easy!


2014 NBA All-Star Weekend Schedule of Events

Thursday, February 13, 2014

• 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. - All Day Dunk-A-Thon – NBA TV
• 5 p.m. - The Starters – NBA TV
• 6 p.m. - NBA GameTime – NBA TV
• 7 p.m. – 2 a.m. - All Day Dunk-A-Thon – NBA TV
• 8 p.m. - Nets vs. Bulls – TNT
• 10:30 p.m. – Thunder vs. Lakers – TNT
• 1 a.m. - Inside the NBA – TNT


Friday, February 14, 2014

• 10:30 a.m. - BBVA Compass Rising Stars Challenge Practice – NBA TV
• Noon - Basketball Hall of Fame announcement – NBA TV
• 12:30 p.m. - NBA All-Star 2014 Media Day – NBA TV
• 5 p.m. - The Beat – NBA TV
• 6 p.m. - The Starters – NBA TV
• 7 p.m. - Sprint NBA All-Star Celebrity Game - ESPN
• 9 p.m. - BBVA Compass Rising Stars Challenge - TNT
• 11 p.m. - Inside The NBA – TNT
• 12 a.m. - NBA GameTime – NBA TV


Saturday, February 15, 2014

• 11:30 a.m. - NBA Inside Stuff – NBA TV
• Noon - East/West Practice & player interviews – NBA TV
• 3 p.m. - 2014 NBA D-League All Star Game - NBA TV
• 6 p.m. - Open Court: The Dunk in Depth & Defined – TNT
• 7 p.m. - Adam Silver news conference – NBA TV
• 7 p.m. - TNT NBA Special, TBD – NBA TV
 8 p.m. - TNT NBA Tip-Off – TNT
• 8:30 p.m. - State Farm All-Star Saturday Night - TNT

– Sears Shooting Stars (1st Event)
– Taco Bell Skills Challenge (2nd Event)
– Foot Locker Three-Point Contest (3rd Event)
– Sprite Slam Dunk (4th Event)

• 11 p.m. - TNT NBA Special, TBD – TNT
• 12 a.m. - NBA GameTime – NBA TV


Sunday, February 16, 2014

• 1 p.m. - Legends Brunch – NBA TV
• 5 p.m. - NBA GameTime – NBA TV
• 6 p.m. - Sprint Pregame Concert – NBA TV
 6:30 p.m. - TNT NBA Special, TBD – TNT
• 7 p.m. - TNT NBA Tip-Off – TNT
• 8 p.m. - 63rd NBA All-Star Game - TNT
• 11:30 p.m. - Inside the NBA – NBA TV