Each holiday season, several New Orleans hotels deck their lobbies with lush Christmas trees, decorative garland and twinkling holiday lights.
Some local pastry chefs also add an extra touch of holiday charm to displays with some truly Instagram-worthy gingerbread houses, usually with some Crescent City flair.
Here’s a list of gorgeous gingerbread houses found in some local hotels that are worthy of a visit and a snapshot.
The Ritz-Carlton, New Orleans
The Ritz-Carlton, New Orleans unveiled a to-scale gingerbread replica of the St. Charles Avenue streetcar featuring notable New Orleanians. Local celebrities from the city’s past and present are portrayed as passengers.
Some of the “riders” on board include New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees, comedienne and television star Ellen DeGeneres, award-winning musician and actor Harry Connick, Jr. and legendary jazz musician Louis Armstrong, among others. Ingredients include 444 pounds of flour, 400 eggs, 142 pounds of sugar, and 80 pounds of butter.
The streetcar will be on display in the third floor lobby of the hotel through January 3, 2019.
This grand gingerbread house inside the Harrah’s Hotel lobby would bring a smile to any member of the Who Dat Nation. This year’s creation is a large replica of the Mercedes Benz Superdome, inspired by the love of the New Orleans Saints.
“We had no idea when we started the design that they would go on to have such an amazing season, so that just makes it even more special!” Harrah’s spokesperson Ashley Lusk said.
The structure was built by Harrah’s facilities team and adorned with 150 pounds of candy, 200 pieces of gingerbread cookies and 150 pounds of icing by the Harrah’s bakery team. Just outside of the hotel, visitors can enjoy the annual holiday tradition, Miracle on Fulton Street. During the month-long celebration, all will be entertained by the sights and sounds of the holiday season. The event is free and open to the public.
The Roosevelt New Orleans
Each year, the Roosevelt New Orleans reveals a gingerbread house along with the unveiling of the dazzling Waldorf Wonderland lobby. Chef Deborah Heyd is the mastermind behind a 48 square-foot gingerbread display housed in Teddy’s Cafe, celebrating the hotel’s 125th anniversary.
This year’s design features the original six-story building façade of the Roosevelt hotel and a candy and gingerbread covered lobby as it appears now. The gingerbread hotel also includes a matching 2018 Teddy Bear Tea Bear from the hotel’s popular Teddy Bear Tea made out of cereal treats and chocolate.
Here’s what went into the structure taking more than 600 hours to create:
- 700 lbs. traditional and blonde gingerbread Dough
- 400 lbs. royal icing
- 20 lbs. rice cereal treats
- 80 lbs. candy such as different types of caramels, candy canes, Rock Candy, chocolate Sixlets, M&M’s, gumballs, Jelly Bellies and marshmallows
While you’re at the hotel stop over to the Sazerac Bar for a night cap.
Sheraton New Orleans
The Sheraton New Orleans brings some of the city’s iconic buildings found in Jackson Square to life in gingerbread form. Visitors can find a gingerbread village featuring the Cabildo, the Presbytere and St. Louis Cathedral.
Pastry chef Caitlin Cheramie created the gingerbread village along with her pastry team, Liz, Michelle, Joe, and Four. The crew used an abstract candy theme to adorn about 500 gingerbread bricks with windows, doors and other architectural details found on the historic buildings, with a Christmas-colored twist.
Building the village took some intense construction. The team used 75 pounds of powdered sugar and two gallons of egg whites to make the icing used to glue the gingerbread structures.
Here are some of the intricate ingredients used in the village that took a month to build:
- 2,400 red and green peppermints
- Nearly 150 pretzel rods
- 20 pounds each of peach rings and watermelon rings
- 10 pounds of assorted jelly beans
- 12 pounds of Mike & Ike’s
- 5 pounds each of M&M’s and jelly slices
Windsor Court Hotel
The Windsor Court displays a gingerbread dollhouse, themed after the book “‘Twas The Night Before Christmas.” The dollhouse features an open back, allowing visitors to see inside the rooms. It also includes a doll family: Mom, dad, son, and daughter, plus Santa in a sleigh and reindeer. There is also be a copy of the popular holiday book on display with the house.
Stick around Windsor Court’s grand lobby as the holiday spirit comes alive with a Christmas tree nearly 20 feet tall — perfect for an Instagram photo.