What’s most unique about this hotel was its elevator system, which is both a positive and negative at the same time. They quickly take guests to the proper floors with minimal waiting and minimal stops, but might present a security issue. Rooms were clean and comfortable but not "spacious". Meeting facilities were excellent. Please read on for details. . . .
The elevators. At any particular floor, one enters the desired floor on the digital keypad and visually and verbally the system instructs which car to take, for example “Car E”. Inside the car, there are no additional buttons to push, and the car simply takes riders to the appropriate floor(s). There are two banks of elevators, one for the lower rooms, and one for the upper rooms. We found that the speed with which elevator cars came was pretty impressive, and I don’t think that there was point in the entire stay where we felt that we were “waiting” for an elevator. The elevator makes very few stops because of it's computerized nature. Note to those actually staying at the hotel for the first time: all elevators from both banks go to floors 1 - 8, as well as escalators on the lower floors for the business meeting rooms.
The elevators also present a possible security issue. At about 1 am one evening, we were awakened by loud, constand knocking on the door of an adjacent room, with the [apparently intoxicated] demands from someone saying “let me in.” As the knocking continued for what must have been 10 minutes straight and this person, presumably a guest, continued to bang on the door, demand entrance, and spit loudly, we contacted the hotel operator requesting security. I’m not sure exactly what transpired, but the response was not immediate. While any elevator security system would obviously not prevent a hotel guest from reaching their own room, we realized that the elegant elevator system which quickly brought people to their destination at the Sheraton had no mechanism by which inappropriate visitors could be denied access. Of course in a city which a higher than usual population of drunks and otherwise shady characters, we recognized that security really could be an issue. Perhaps there were plainclothes security or surveillance cameras for security, but these were not seen by us.
The location is good for tourists. The hotel is located on Canal Street across the street from the Marriott and nearby a JW Marriott, the Sheraton is a short walk from the river, the casino, and the restaurants and shops of the French Quarter. We stayed 5 nights: the primary purpose of my trip was business.
From a meeting standpoint, the rooms were clean, appropriately sized, and with good acoustics. Rooms and locations were well marked, which can be a problem at hotels. Food provided was better than usual for a “hotel” breakfast and lunch. The “weak link” was that there was only one restroom (one male and one female) on the entire floor, so if one was trying to “quickly duck out” of a meeting and return, it would take more time to reach the restroom and return - - not a major issue, but this could be an inconvenience.
The athletic center was much better than average, I think, for a hotel facility. It was VERY large with free weights, machines, and a variety of aerobic devices - treadmills, stationary bicycles, etc. There were many of them, so the fact that about 20% of them were not functioning wasn’t really an issue. Water was available, but antiseptic wipe availabiltiy was inconsistent.
The rooms were average. They were clean and the beds comfortable. We had a reasonably sized window which let in a reasonable amount of light; another friend in another room apparently had a much smaller window. The view varied from good to not so good depending on if one looked out over the city (the predominant view) or down towards the street (see photos).
Maid service came late in the afternoon - at about 5 pm - each day. This was a little inconvenient because I was finished with my meeting and wanted to "chill out" and relax, or to change and go to the athletic center (or to shower afterwards), but felt that I really could not put out the "do not disturb sign" on the door since we were getting into the evening hours and I wanted my room serviced. I would have much preferred for the maid service to have been in the morning or even early afternoon.
The lobby bar was frequented by us several times, and the bar service was good. We attempted to get waitress service once sitting at a table, and after waiting for an unacceptably long period of time, we went to the bar itself, where we had been the night before. Advice: sit at the bar or choose a table closer to the bar for increased chances of being noticed rather than choosing a table or seating at the periphery.
We DID have some issues with our complex reservations that were supposed to be merged into one reservation that required significantly more work and attention on my part to ensure accuracy and to be sure we didn't need to change rooms several times. Despite my frustrations and getting multiple separate bills instead of one "master bill", the staff did make sure that we didn't need to change rooms and the rates I paid for the various nights were as quoted.
Would I return? One night that we stayed was at the standard rate, the others were discounted such as one might get as a AAA rate. Value at the discounted rate was "very good" whereas if I had paid the standard rate for each night of the entire stay, I would consider the value of this property and our stay fair to average. I'd seriously consider looking into and comparing the Sheraton to one of the nearby Marriott properties.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Sheraton New Orleans Hotel is on the historic Canal Street streetcar line adjacent to the French Quarter and is ideal for conventions and special events, with over 105,000 sq ft of meeting space including a 28,000 sq ft ballroom. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Sheraton New Orleans Hotel New Orleans
- New Orleans Sheraton