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We've already talked about how good the Super Bowl was for hotels in the Big Easy, but will it be the biggest blessing of the year?
While the city used to judge the success of Mardi Gras by the amount of trash they cleaned up afterwards (seriously), they lean a little more on hotel performance these days. How does Mardi Gras stack up against the Big Game? New Orleans is still sorting through the hotel data from this year's Mardi Gras, but a look at the numbers from last year show one thing very clearly: The Super Bowl really was super.
A study that compared the peak days of each event showed that the Super Bowl drew much higher rates despite similar occupancy levels. High-end hotels had an average daily rate of $460 during the Super Bowl compared to an ADR of $265 for Mardi Gras 2012. The story was the same for "middle-class" properties -- $392/night for the Super Bowl and $273 for Mardi Gras. Those are pretty big rate gaps! It's also interesting to note that the "middle-class" hotels had a higher ADR than the high-end hotels for Mardi Gras. Guess that says something about the type of lodging visitors to Mardi Gras are seeking.
The Ravens are Super Bowl Champs, and the Beyonce-Destiny's Child reunion certainly got plenty of folks talking, but New Orleans hotels came out on top, too.
A few fast facts to brighten up your Monday: during the week of January 27th leading up to the Big Game, occupancy rose from 46.6% to 71.1%, and the average daily rate jumped 125.9% to $289.03, according to data from STR.
Meanwhile, the U.S. hotel industry as a whole benefited from the Super Bowl, with occupancy up 3.6%, and RevPAR (Revenue Per Available Room) increasing 9.8% to $57.06.
While it makes us sad that a city as great as New Orleans had an occupancy rate well below the national average prior to the Super Bowl, it just goes to show how important it is for cities to take advantage of major national events. Everyone wants to take a vacation, but they sometimes need a little push and motivation. Props to the hotels this year who pulled off Big Game parties and promotions (and boo to the hotel room scalpers like this guy hawking a room at the Wyndham Barrone Plaza for $3,000/night).
The next big sporting event for the hotel industry is baseball's spring training in Arizona and Florida, which starts next month. We've already mentioned one such promotion in our mancation story, and hopefully more will emerge as the date gets closer.
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Even non-football fans have figured out SUPER BOWL XLVII is happening in New Orleans this weekend.
While the top hotel rooms sold out long, long ago, there's still a few ways to get in on the action in town.
Stalk the Teams at These Hotels: Conde Nast Traveler told us where the AFC and NFC champs are staying. The San Francisco 49ers will be shacking up at the New Orleans Marriott while the Baltimore Ravens are spending the night at the Hilton Riverside. There aren't any rooms available for you, of course, but there's nothing stopping you from hitting up the hotel's restaurants and bars to spy on some past and future gridiron greats.
Take a Chance on Craigslist: Now that we're just days away from the Big Game, folks in the Big Easy are getting desperate with their hotel room offerings. There are several available on Craigslist right now. You can peruse the options here.. As always, with Craigslist, USE CAUTION when buying a hotel room. Make them show you a confirmation email before you fork over any money.
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Super Bowl parties shouldn't be hard to find in hotel lobbies and bars across the country, but we wanted to take a look at a lesser thought of approach to watching the Big Game: Hanging out in your hotel room.
We've found many hotels offering in-room Super Bowl packages and deals, usually surrounding the booking of a suite. While you know full well we'll never pass up a social event, we did the lazy man's dirty work and dug up a sample of such opportunities. Turns out, staying in your room isn't as lame as it sounds!
Four Seasons Hotel, Philadelphia: We'll be honest--it was the cheesesteak spring rolls that got our attention, and even better--you don't have to have a special room to enjoy them. The in-room package is available to all guests and includes four local Philadelphia beers, 12-piece BBQ wings, chips and dips, and the cheesesteak spring rolls for $40. That's a pretty good amount of food for a decent price. The hotel's proximity to the Ben Franklin Parkway, the Art Museum, and the Barnes' Exhibit give you plenty of opportunities to explore without straying too far before kickoff.
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Know of a hotel room open for Super Bowl? Tell us where right here.
After a nail-biting weekend of football--it was especially gut-wrenching for Seattle and Denver fans--the teams now vying for a Super Bowl ring are the Patriots, the Ravens, the 49ers and the Falcons. Update: Make that the 49ers and either the Patriots or the Ravens. Update #2: The 49ers and the Ravens will meet in New Orleans for SUper Bowl XLVII!
Are you rooting for one of these teams? Then we're know you aren't going to jinx their chances of making it to the Big Game by booking a hotel room.
BUT just in case you are confident in your team's success and have been devotedly practicing voodoo against the other teams, we've compiled a list of available hotel rooms in New Orleans.
We will be constantly updating this list as we learn of new openings. We expect a bunch more to open up after the NFC and AFC Championships so bookmark this page if you want to go to the Super Bowl. If you know of a place with openings, or better yet, you are a hotel with openings, tell us how to book in comments below! (PS. If you still need a flight to Nola, Jaunted's got the scoop on that. Again, break open your wallet.)
Added Jan. 20, 10:58pm EST
· ST. CHARLES INN: This Best Western in the Garden District let us know they have rooms available for Super Bowl Weekend. We found a non-smoking king room open from January 31-Februay 4 for $850 a night. If you got the cash, hurry up and book now. We don't think it will last long.
Added Jan. 21, 1:03pm EST
· TOP TIER TRAVEL: This brother-sister travel agency has locked up several hotels in New Orleans for Super Bowl like the Four Points by Sheraton on Bourbon Street and the Holiday Inn French Quarter. Those are going for well over a $1,000 a night but the Hampton Inn and Suites Elmwood near the airport is "just" $450 a night. Peruse their options here.
· As we pointed out last week in our 5 Tips for Booking a Hotel Room for Super Bowl, all the good spots are sold-out (usually snapped up by the Big Game's corporate sponsors years in advance.) And the budget places are asking for outrageous rates for the weekend. Case in point, the Holiday Inn Metairie New Orleans Airport is open for $699 a night. But even this low-budget supply is dwindling with only 10 spots available as of January 14.
· FanExperiences.com is the official booking portal recommended by the NFL. The site is only showing nine hotels open for the weekend (Friday-Monday.) Again, these are mostly budget spots and except for the Motel 6 at $399 a night, all of them are outside of New Orleans-- in Baton Rouge or Houma.
Read on for more options
Know of a hotel room open that's close to the Superdome in New Orleans? Let us know!
As we head into the final weeks of the NFL Playoffs, the mad scramble for hotel rooms in New Orleans, where Super Bowl XLVII will be held, has already begun. We told you that way back in October most of the hotels in the Big Easy were sold-out and that's still true.
Right now, doing a quick check on Expedia we see the usual budget suspects--anything with Inn in the second half of its name--in less-than-desirable areas of New Orleans still open for $300+ a night. So there is availability during Super Bowl weekend. But is it the kind you want?
Starting next week we'll be keeping our eyes out on who still has Super Bowl hotel rooms open, from the usual suspects like hotel booking sites and the official Super Bowl reservations site (at FanExperiences.com) to less conventional places like AirBnB.com, Craigslist, and our ever trusty HotelChatter tipline.
No matter where you begin your search for hotel rooms though, the same rules apply for finding a hotel deal for Super Bowl:
Keep reading to see our five tips for booking a Super Bowl hotel room
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The reasons for a post-holiday getaway just keep piling up!
OneTravel.com has a really cool promotion happening throughout the NFL Playoffs called the "Travel Bowl," which offers flash-sales-type hotel deals in the cities where the teams reside. That's the catch: These deals are only valid and available for as long as the city's team remains in the playoffs. So, each week, another city’s deals will no longer be available to claim.
There are great places in play -- Boston, Denver, Seattle, and San Francisco, for example (no disrespect to the others) -- and with so many eye-rolling promotions floating around, we are happy to see something that will give us another reason to root.
We put together some examples below, and you can see them all here. There are nice discounts, but you need to jump on them -- especially if you think their team is going down this weekend!
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We feel we should preface this post with a big 'but...'
Yes, it's true that Beyonce will be the official act for the Super Bowl halftime show this February. Yes, it will probably be a better show than whatever weird Egyptian thing Madonna did last year. And yes, even you, who's left planning 'til the very last minute, can find a way to see Beyonce perform and have a place to stay.
But (we told you it was coming!) don't expect to find a hotel in New Orleans proper, as, from what we can tell, they're all pretty much sold out. A quick look online shows that not only are our usual NOLA faves fully booked, even the crumby ones on the outskirts of town are unavailable too.
So, what's a Beyonce fan to do?
We love us some Big Blue, but we have to admit: we really wanted to see the New Orleans Saints take on the Pats on Sunday. (And, duh, beat them.) Even without New Orleans in the Super Bowl, we wish we were there to get our Game Face on at the Hyatt Regency New Orlean's Vitascope Hall.
This is one of the best hotel sports bars we've ever seen. It's not a dive full of aggressive sports fans; it's actually quite sleek looking. But more importantly, it is designed with perfect game-watching functionality.
There are big leather bar stools with seat backs lining the bar with front-on views of the flatscreens and there are lots of leather couches in various configurations scattered around the room. The prime spots for football games, though, are these semi-private booths with their own flatscreens...
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The Courtyard Greatness on the Road Zone at the NFL Experience in Indianapolis yesterday.
We've already told you how Courtyard by Marriott, an official sponsor of the NFL, was turning into a superfan for the Super Bowl XLVI this year but now that the Big Game weekend has officially kicked off we thought we'd check in with Janis Milham, Vice President and Global Brand Manager for Courtyard and get some on-the-scene reports from her.
"It is BUZZING," she said yesterday of the vibe in downtown Indianapolis. "There are people all over the place and it is just the first day. I can only imagine what it would be like on Saturday and Sunday."
Milham was sitting in the sports bar of the JW Marriott but she was about to head over to the NFL Experience at the Indianapolis Convention Center where NFL fans can gawk at the Vince Lombardi Trophy, step into a replica NFL locker room, see how far they can throw a spiral downfield and more. It's also where people can peep at the new Courtyard By Marriott lobbies at the Courtyard Greatness on the Road Zone.
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All week long you've been on the fence about attending Super Bowl XLVI in Indianapolis on February 5, but now you have finally
asked your parents for some extra cash cobbled enough money together to get yourself to the Big Game. Yet the question remains--where do you stay?
There are some options left in Indianapolis but remember, all the good hotels are sold-out so don't expect silk sheets and bubble bath butlers. And actually, a lot of the budget hotels are sold-out too. So you will have to make do with budgety leftovers out in the 'burbs. But the prices are still going to hurt your wallet.
Here's a couple of options with availability. These hotels and their room rates were accurate as of January 27, 2012 but they are definitely subject to change.
It's official--the New England Patriots and the New York Giants will once again face off against each other in the Super Bowl. This time the showdown's happening in Indianapolis on February 5. While Manning and his mates will be chillaxing at the Marriott Downtown and Brady and co. are shacking up in luxury at the University Place Hotel, the rest of us devoted football fans are left with some pretty grim budget options outside of downtown.
But if you're a Giants or a Pats fan whose not on a budget, then you may want to consider Jetsetter.com's Super Bowl packages which go on sale today at 3pm EST.
The packages include three night's accommodations the Four Points Sheraton in Carmel, Indiana, where the rooms actually look pretty good. And since it's a Four Points that mean free WiFi. Woot! The packages also include invites to the Rolling Stone Bacardi Bash featuring LMFAO and Lupe Fiasco, access to the game-day Rock n' Roll Fan Tailgate (where Jane's Addiction and The Roots will be playing) and lastly tickets to the Big Game with VIP rides to and from the stadium.
Package prices depend on double occupancy but vary due to location of seat tickets, room type and access to parties. Here's the breakdown: