This historic inn has overlooked Lafayette Square since 1916, but only recently has the Lafayette morphed into a classy boutique hotel, undergoing a complete renovation in 2006. French tapestries hang from the walls, classical music plays in the lobby, and murals throughout depict the life of the Marquis de Lafayette. Rooms are sunny and classically furnished, and those on the second-floor have balconies.
Ask for room 208, the only non-suite with a balcony overlooking Lafayette Square. Celebrities like the quiet seclusion of the Lafayette Hotel – Sean Penn spent a month here. The hotel also has the ideal Mardi Gras location. Every parade passes by its balcony before stopping at the Gallier Hall reviewing stand down the street.