The Crown Jewel of New Orleans Luxury
The Roosevelt Hotel and the land on which it sits are filled with history. In the 1830s, the area was home to the state capitol, Charity Hospital, Christ Episcopal Church, and mansions of famed Louisianians of French and Spanish descent. That period culminated in 1893 with the opening of the lavish Grunewald Hotel, built by Bavarian-born businessman Louis Grunewald to replace the Grunewald Hall performing arts center. It was so successful that by 1900 attempts were made to acquire the adjoining property. On New Year’s Eve 1907, a 400-room, 14-story annex opened to chimes and whistles at the stroke of midnight. The Grunewald also was home to the infamous nightclub The Cave, a popular drinking spot decorated with plaster rock formations, nymphs and gnomes and known for its grotto-like feel. In 1923, the original Baronne Street hotel was demolished for a tall new addition featuring every amenity imaginable. Renamed the Roosevelt Hotel, the property stretched an entire city block, and does still. The original Grunewald name remains above the hotel’s entrance on University Place. In 1934, Seymour Weiss purchased the hotel and positioned it as one of America’s most treasured hotels. Weiss, originally the barbershop manager, also became a close adviser to Gov. Huey P. Long, the controversial populist who changed Louisiana politics and the national presidential agenda. The hotel was sold in 1965 and named the Fairmont. Following the 2005 levee failures from Hurricane Katrina, the hotel was sold to Dimension Development, which restored this historic property and renamed it The Roosevelt New Orleans.