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Three Hip, New Downtown Hotels To Watch Out For

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Aloft Hotel, a "style at a steal" sort of joint will bring 188 rooms to a vacant-since-Katrina building on the corner of Gravier and Baronne Streets in the CBD. Aloft's signature w xyz bar and Splash pool are included in the plans, along with a 24-hour fitness center and 2,500-square-feet of "flexible meeting space" in case the business travelers want to drop in. No word yet on hotel rates or if the hotel plans to bring their Keyless Check-In option to the New Orleans Aloft, which allows guests to check in and open their hotel room doors with their phones. In a tourist-locals mash-up, the Starwood Hotels property will share the 30-story structure with 192 residential spots and is scheduled to open in January 2015.

↑ After a $10 million reno at the historic CBD building that's currently home to the Cotton Exchange Hotel, the New Orleans hotel scene can welcome AC Hotels by Marriott to the party. Geared toward the hip, millennial crowd, with about 80 properties in Spain, Italy, France and Portugal, this Carondelet Street location will be one of the very first AC Hotels in the States. What to expect later this year: 220 rooms, a rooftop pool, 3,000-square-feet of meeting space, and a library/biz center. The hotel will have all new beds and fixtures, free wifi, a full breakfast buffet that turns into a small plate/cocktail hour shindig in the evening hours, and local artwork on the walls.

↑ The W Hotel on Poydras Street in the CBD begins its $29 million transformation in April and by winter of this year, will be a Le Méridien property. The 440-room hotel, also part of the Starwood brand, will have an upgraded fitness center, rooftop pool, and 10,000-square-feet of meeting space. Other changes include kicking the traditional hotel lobby to the curb and bringing on the "Le Méridien Hub™ experience" which includes large-scale art, a "signature scent," fancy lighting, artist-designed keycards, and a 24-hour curated soundtrack.
· Hotels Week 2014 coverage [Curbed NOLA]