Not for the discerning traveller
After looking at the website and reading the reviews on Trip Advisor, I was convinced that I had found a little gem hotel, off the beaten path, for my recent business trip to New Orleans.
When I arrived, I found the lobby to be truely unique and the candlelight bar looked very inviting. However, I was very disappointed when I checked into my room. The room was very small and unexpectedly plain, and the bathroom, while somewhat impressive in size, not as deluxe as expected. The shower head was broken and sprayed water everywhere.
When I mentioned to the person at the front desk that I was somewhat disappointed with my room, he upgraded me to a Penthouse room. This room, also disappointing, though slightly larger, with a dirty bathtub lined with black mold. I did, however, have a balcony, which was nice.
I found that everything at the hotel was inconsistent. At time, service at the front desk was very good, but usually the front desk people made you feel as if you were interrupting their personal phone calls. There are no room service menus in the room, which means that if you want a menu you have to call down to the front desk or stop by the restaurant (at which time I was given a tray of breakfast to carry through the lobby, up the elevator and to my room myself!)
My colleagues were staying at the Hotel Monaco and the W for around the same price and had much nicer rooms and better service. I was embarrassed that I had talked some of my other colleages into staying at the International House as well, based only on an attractive website.
I would be surprised if this hotel was still in business a few years from now.
Go for the penthouse
We stayed here last May. Since it was our anniversary I upgraded to penthouse room. It was wonderful. The lighting is very subdued in the halls which took geting used to. The staff was attentive and the location was excellant. Great place for a relaxing yet urban stay.
I stayed at the International House. The staff were helpful and friendly. This was my first stay in New Orleans and had to rely on the recommendations of the staff which were fair and accurate. The room was large and clean every day.
Decent, but overpriced
The staff were excellent, from beginning to end. The room was decent by NO standards, although a bit drab. Location was great... close to the Quarter, but away from the noise. Many services still not operating because of the lack of employees, but understandable thoughout the city. Would consider going again, but the price is higher than most equal or better hotels, so no value here.
Nice, but still recovering.
The location, architecture and decor of the International House are great. Both classic and modern. It's located in the CBD right next to all the big hotels like the Marriott, W, and Loew's. From my understanding the hotel is locally owned along with Loft 523 which is still closed (as of 11/23). Business seemed a bit slow during our stay. I can't say if it's still suffering post Katrina or because of the time of year (right before the Thanksgiving Holiday). I'd guess a little of both. The gym is up and running but seemed under construction. No water, no towels, open wiring, etc. The Restaurant is closed which means no room service. However, the front desk does have "honor" snacks like chips and candy-bars available upon request. Also, in the morning free coffee and snacks are made available in the lobby. The rooms have a fridge but no "honor" bar at this time. The Loa Bar in the Lobby is open. The bartenders are friendly and mix tasty drinks. One quirk of the hotel is their use of low light ambience. For example, the bar is lit entirely by candle light. This theme runs throughout the hotel from lobby to hallways to rooms. It's a cool vibe for the bar, but I would have preferred more light in the public areas. Maybe it was the lack of people, but it just felt a bit creepy. 25% more light would do the trick. ( In the bathrooms they have installed a dimmer switch for more control.) There is also free WiFi and a free terminal in the lobby which is great, but the connection is really slow. This wasn't a concern for me, but I can imagine it might be frustrating if I was traveling for business. Overall, the International House is a nice hotel, and I would stay there again.
Bogus charges, Crappy customer service
The room was wonderful, but the after-service is law-suit worthy. I received a bogus-charge on my credit-card from the hotel. They refuse to remove it -saying that I need to go through my credit card company instead. BTW - the charge is a mere $35. They obviously are not interested in bringing people back to their hotel. In my quest to get this charge resolved, I was passed around to 5 different people before I was hung up on.
Good value and location.
We stayed here for one night and found the hotel to be a real bargain and very adequate for our needs. It's also in a perfect location just a few blocks from the French Quarter and Harrah's. We booked through hotels.com and only paid $92 for a deluxe queen room. We had a view of the street, reasonably sized room, and a very large and well-equipped bathroom with a very roomy walk-in shower. The radio was playing New Orleans jazz when we entered the room. They had a collection of jazz CD's available to play but the CD function wasn't working on our radio. But it was a nice gesture and I'm sure they would have corrected the problem if we had asked. We had stayed at this hotel previously (pre-Katrina) and paid more than double for the same quality room at that time. So it is obvious that New Orleans needs our business and our support. A previous reviewer mentioned something about a lack of valet parking. They did have valet parking at a cost of $30. We could have parked cheaper at a nearby garage but it wouldn't have been as convenient. After we called for our car, it was waiting for us by the time we reached the lobby. All the staff members were very friendly and helpful. We were even allowed to check in early at 11 am because the hotel wasn't busy. If I return to New Orleans I will definitely return to International House.
Gorgeous Room, Great Bar - Loved it!
We stayed at the International House on May 27, 2007 for two nights. The first room we were given was a small corner room. When we told the front desk we were there celebrating a special occasion, the desk clerk gave us an upgrade to a beautiful, huge corner room surrounded by windows. The bed was great with giant, leather headboard, but my favorite touch was the chandelier and sitting area. The bathroom was clean, roomy and nice. The newly redone decor was chic and clean. The staff could not have been friendlier. Great doormen!! And the bar was quaint and cute. I will definitely recommend the bloody mary's with the New Orleans touch of pickled green bean garnish! This was a wonderful hotel, I will definitely stay here again. It is just a couple blocks to the French Quarter, which is not a bad walk at all- as long as it's not too hot (and your heels aren't too high)!