New Orleans, LA

This 137 Years Old Landmark Hotel In New Orleans is One Of The Oldest Family-Owned And Operated Hotels In The U.S


Since 1886, five generations of Monteleones have dedicated themselves to making their hotel a sparkling jewel in the heart of the French Quarter.
Entrance of the Hotel Monteleone, New Orleans, during "Tales of the Cocktail" 2011Photo byDan Silvers/Wikimedia Commons

The high-rise building that sits majestically at the foot of Royal street embodies history, luxury, and uniqueness. Its strategic position offers guests the best point of departure to all the amazing places in New Orleans. Small wonder they say that the French Quarter begins in the lobby of Hotel Monteleone.

Hotel Monteleone located at 214 Royal Street in the French Quarter of New Orleans, Louisiana, is a family-owned and operated hotel. Founded in 1886 by Antonio Monteleon, an industrious nobleman who operated a successful shoe factory in Sicily before migrating to New Orleans after hearing great stories about the land of opportunity. 

He arrived in New Orleans circa 1880 and opened a cobbler shop on Royal Street when it was the center of commerce and banking in America’s most European city. In 1886, Mr. Monteleone took his first step into the hospitality industry by acquiring a 64-room French Quarter hotel on the corner of Royal and Iberville streets. The beginning of a historical landmark New Orleans hotel was after the Commercial Hotel nearby became available for purchase, setting the stage for Antonio to spread his entrepreneurial wings. 

Hotel Monteleone is one of the last great family-owned-and-operated hotels in New Orleans. Since 1886, five generations of Monteleones have dedicated themselves to making their hotel a sparkling jewel in the heart of the French Quarter.

There have been five major additions to Hotel Monteleone. The first was in 1903 when 30 rooms were added to the hotel. The next addition occurred in 1908, during a time of financial panic in the United States when 300 more rooms were added. In 1908, the name of the hotel was changed from the Commercial Hotel to Hotel Monteleone.

Antonio Monteleone passed away In 1913 and was succeeded by his son Frank. Frank added 200 more rooms to the hotel in 1928, a year before another horrible crash in the U.S. economy. The hotel weathered the Great Depression in 1954 and also went through its fourth expansion which requires the demolition of the original building. The foundation was laid for a new building that would include guest facilities, ballrooms, dining rooms, and cocktail lounges. 

Frank Monteleone died in 1958 and was succeeded by his son, Bill. In 1964, the fifth and final major expansion saw the addition of more floors, more guest rooms, and a Sky Terrace with swimming pools and cocktail lounges. In 2011 Bill died and his son William Jr. took over. It remains one of the few long-standing, family-owned hotels in the nation.

The hotel has long been the favorite of distinguished authors. Many of them immortalized the Grand Dame of the French Quarter in their works. Ernest Hemingway, Tennessee Williams, and William Faulkner always made 214 Royal Street their address while in the Crescent City. 

Anne Rice, Stephen Ambrose, and John Grisham also joined the ranks of literary guests over the years. The hotel was In June 1999 designated an official literary landmark by the Friends of the Library Association owing to its distinction among the literary elite. The Plaza and Algonquin Hotels in New York City are the only other hotels in the U.S. that share this honor.

Hotel Monteleone is known for being one of the premier haunted hotels in New Orleans. Hotel guests and staff have regularly experienced haunted events that would cause even the staunchest skeptic to take pause. This haunted hotel had a restaurant door that opens almost every evening and then closes again, even though it is locked. 

The International Society of Paranormal Research spent several days at Hotel Monteleone In March 2003. While at the hotel, they made contact with more than a dozen spirits. Among them were several former employees, a man named William “Red” Wildemere, who died inside the hotel of natural causes. Another spirit is that of a friendly toddler named Maurice Begere. The boy died in the hotel, and his distraught parents returned frequently in hopes he might visit them. Maurice eventually appeared to his mother and comforted her, and to this day, guests report seeing him near the room where he died.

Hotel Monteleone is a historic landmark and a member of Historic Hotels of America.The official program of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. The hotel has 570 guest rooms, including 50 suites. A few steps from this landmark hotel take you into New Orleans’ tourist attractions including Jackson Square, Bourbon Street, the French Market, and the Riverwalk, where you can watch the steamboats along the Mississippi River.

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