By Danielle Palecek
Three properties -- two new, one renovated -- are bringing new life to hotel offerings around the Big Easy's iconic French Quarter: The SpringHill Suites New Orleans Downtown unveiled major renovations to its 208 suites and lobby; the Saint Hotel debuted in the city's long-vacant Audubon building; and the Hotel Mazarin opened on Bienville Street.
All three properties are within a few minutes of popular destinations such as the Superdome, the World War II Museum and Harrah's Casino.
The completion of the SpringHill Suites New Orleans Downtown renovation brings new suites with separate living, working and sleeping spaces. Rates start at $89 per night.
The renovation of the hotel, located in a former 19th century sugar cane warehouse in the booming Warehouse/Arts District, already has received positive guest feedback.
"Being an all-suite brand, customers already love the spacious suites, but with the new design, we are able to enhance their travel experience," said General Manager Rodney Davis. See http://www.marriott.com/springhill-suites/travel.mi.
Saints and pontiffs
Meanwhile, the Saint Hotel, located on Canal Street, offers contemporary comforts such as complimentary in-room WiFi and Niven Morgan signature bath products, and it also strives to excel in that typically Big Easy pursuit: dining.
The eight-story, 166-room Saint Hotel offers three dining options: Sweet Olive, which showcases executive chef Michael Stoltzfus' American cooking; Halo rooftop bar, opening this spring; and Burgundy Bar, which features live jazz several nights a week.
Owner Mark Wyant said his goal is to establish the hotel as "a location for unforgettable dining" that will appeal to both locals and visitors to the city. Rates start at $159 a night. Go to www.thesainthotelneworleans.com.
Located directly in the French Quarter, the Hotel Mazarin, named for 17th century pope and French royal adviser Jules Mazarin, holds court in the building that formerly housed the St. Louis Hotel.
The Hotel Mazarin is part of the New Orleans Hotel Collection, which also includes the Bourbon Orleans, Crowne Plaza New Orleans Airport and Wyndham Riverfront.
The 102-room boutique hotel provides a "destination for travelers surrounded by the French Quarter's world-renowned entertainment, dining, shopping, and historic attractions," said owner Joseph Jaeger Jr.
The Hotel Mazarin features a fitness center, a business center and a courtyard with a Renaissance-inspired fountain.
Other property features include in-room spa services and complimentary WiFi. Rates start at $119 per night in low season. Visit www.hotelmazarin.com.
By Danielle Palecek
Everyday we have grown accustomed to washing our hands with soap and nourishing them with lotion. It’s like a ritual that we do each and everyday especially when we are trying to get rid of germs and toxins. Sometimes we hate washing our hands because the harshness the soap brings. I know I hate harsh soaps, I get cracked skin and it hurts! Niven Morgan brings a set of soap and lotion that can make washing hands and nurturing them a whole lot easier and more.
Niven Morgan hand soaps are truly a masterpiece. The soaps are rich in foam and cleanse the hands in one wash. Each soap comes with a rich aroma that leaves your hands smelling nice and fresh.
Tarocco Orange & Lavender gives you a scent of fresh sweet oranges with a subtle scent of soothing lavender. The scent is a must have for any orange lovers. I myself have grown to love this scent because I love drinking orange juice.
Orange Flower & Olive is a blast of floral with orange flowers. There is also a scent in the background which is olive. You could think of it as olive oil in one way or another. When I first used this it came across to me as olive oil with infused floral scents. The scent stuck that way because I had once purchased a floral scented bottle of olive oil for cooking.
Moving on to the hand lotions. The lotions complementing the soaps are said to be able to sooth, soften, and moisturize your hands because of the Aloe Vera, Shea Butter, Sunflower Oil, Cucumbers, and much more! When I used the lotion after washing my hands, I did find it to be cooling and relaxing to the skin. It doesn’t have a thick texture instead a silkier smooth absorbing build. Nourishing and moisturizing as it may be, it comes with a wonderful scent.
What is Jean Baptiste and this red wax insignia on the two bottles?
Let’s begin with a little overview of the name Jean Baptiste 1717. New Orleans was founded by Jean Baptiste le Moyne de Bienville who was an aristocrat that established this city in 1717 as the capital of French Louisiana. His original settlement is still around till date which is the French Quarter.
Niven Morgan pays tribute to Jean Baptiste and brings a series of high quality products dedicated to the founding father.
Jean Baptiste 1717 Body Wash ($28.00) and Sheer Body Oil ($30.00) are available online at www.NivenMorgan.com.
The fragrance of the entire Jean Baptiste 1717 line is quite seductive. There is a sweet tone along with floral. The distinctive scent of jasmine can be noted as well as tuberose, wild rose, and princess lily, subtly sweetened with caramel and creamy vanilla.
Starting off with the Body Wash, it is gold amber in color with honey like texture that is easy to squeeze right out of the bottle. While you wash, you will feel that you are being surrounded by the sweet scent of this series providing pleasantness. After you shower though, your skin won’t feel dry or tight at all. Instead you feel fresh and clean but with hydration from the Vitamin E, Chamomile, Comfrey, and Arnica extract. After pouring this gel out I found it to be puffy in foam with bubbles all over. It feels luxurious and the formula seems very gentle. Rinsing off is effortless leaving my skin fresh and delicately scented.
This sheer body oil brings moisturizing factors to the skin upon use. The mist is non greasy, instead it makes your skin smooth and hydrated. The oil is easily absorbed leaving my skin rejuvenated and luminous. The mist itself is kinda cool because instead of a concentrated point being shot, there is a bigger area being covered. So when you want to rub your skin with the oil there would be even coverage.
Jean Baptiste 1717 is quite the line especially the scent. Two words about the scent, “Alluring and Seductive.” Besides the scent, the body wash is rich and foamy making you feel clean and refreshed while the body oil provides the quick hydration / moisturization you need on your skin. These products are both safe and gently made with high quality ingredients so that you can ensure perfection on each use. For special moments like Valentine, Jean Baptiste will sure to leave a seductive memory.
Niven Morgan is probably one of the best makers of combining relaxation / calming techniques with simple everyday bathing use products. Each time I use their products, I feel my shoulder softening up from tension and my neck softening up from hardness. If you haven’t seen the wonderful things they put out check out their other line which is the Gold Scent. Today, I want to show you their Shampoo from the Blue Scent line. It is something even my daughter’s Bear in a Duck Boat feels cleansed after use.
This bottle of shampoo comes in at 11 fl oz and will be available at www.nivenmorgan.com. Bear in the Duck Boat toy not included!
Once opened, the bottle of shampoo gives off a very calming scent. The scent I immediately sensed was like the big ocean by the beach with citrus infusion. It’s not only this product though, most of Niven Morgan’s scents are found to be very refreshingly nice. A little description on the site can be found about this product.
A fresh, intoxicating fragrance, Niven Morgan’s Blue evokes visual stimuli: a perfect sky reflected in the melted sapphire of a calm sea, these primary blues expressed in an elixir that blends exotic tropical woods and warm amber spiced with mandarin, bergamot and the bright tang of lemon. For men and women.
The top notes to this scent are Amber and Sandalwood while the middle notes include Lemon and Mandarin. Finally, Bergamont is the bottom note.
This shampoo comes in a gel like texture form that is rather rich in ingredients. A few scrubs here and there bring up the foam and bubbly action. Rinsing off is a piece of cake without much effort. But the end result is your hair feeling smooth and happy while it feels cleansed.
Niven Morgan Blue Scent Shampoo is a really moisturizing shampoo that comes very easy to use right out of the box. The scent itself is not only calming, it relieves stress and pain by making you feel relaxed. It is one bottle of love that can be shared in the whole house. When ladies appreciate the rich buttery foam and silky smooth hair, guys will be drawn by the fresh relaxing scent and squeaky clean feel.
As always, Mr. Morgan himself is a lover of animals, so animal testing is non-existent within the brand.
As an accessory connoisseur, Little Miss Muffin carries some of my favorite vendors--- Abigails, Vagabond House, Seda France, Niven Morgan, Aidan Gray, Allison Evans, Currey & Co., Thymes and unique finds from many locals including Oysteria, Toodle Lou Design acrylic paintings, NOLA Tawk pillows, Peter Briant watercolors, Heather McFarlaine watermeter designs, pewter graphic glassware, and Melissa Brownlow hand-painted art.
Having Niven Morgan around the house is like creating the perfect setting for extreme relaxation. That means loosening up the muscles and joints while filling your mind with calm soothing scents. Niven Morgan has different lines of scent, and today I will be featuring 4 items from the Gold Scent series.
Who doesn’t like bath salt when it comes to wrapping yourself in warm water? I know I do! I especially like to close my eyes. But while I do so I must have 2 or 3 scoops of bath salt while I am at it. Why? It’s like soaking yourself for maximum rejuvenation while your senses are also being stimulated. Niven Morgan’s Floral Amber Bath Soak helps me achieve that and more because of both the ingredients and the dreamy signature scent. The product itself retails for $28.00 and comes in at 22 fl oz.
The bath salt isn’t your ordinary sea salt that can be bought everyday. It comes with precious sea salt for the Dead Sea! If you don’t know what the Dead Sea is, it is a salt lake bordering Jordan and Israel. It is known to be one of the saltiest bodies of water in the world! But that is not my real point… The real point is that the body of water there is known to cure multiple illnesses and disorders. Hence, the quality of this bath salt is superb! Besides the sea salt there is Vitamin E, Green Tea, and Sunflower Oil.
Besides bathing in Sea Salt, I occasionally want to be living like a kid again. That is why I also play with bubbles. I absolutely hate bubbles that don’t last for a while and have scents of artificial fragrance in them. It just irks me! When I saw Niven Morgan’s Gold Bubble Bath, I didn’t believe that the bubbles would last a long time. I had to put it to a test. The bottle is 18 fl oz in size and retails for $24.00.
When you let the water flow into the tub, make sure to only squeeze once or twice because the formula is amazingly bubbly. It is like reliving a day like a kid again. I picture that all the time because whenever my kids are taking a bath they are always smiling and screaming with joy. Back to the bubble bath, it is blended with Vitamins C, E, and Chamomile for skin benefits. Also, I am not joking, the bubbles lasted a long time, the water almost turned cold.
By now, you probably want to know what this scent is all about. The scent is quite refined and opulent. It smells very natural. The scents all blend in so well that it is the work of a true artisan.
Sophisticated and sexy, Niven Morgan’s dreamy signature fragrance stirs sweet longings and fond memories with its warm top notes of vanilla and floral amber rising from a bouquet of rich Egyptian neroli and Italian bergamot blended in lusciously subtle aromas of sandalwood and musk. For the sensualist.
You gotta love soap and lotion sets especially having them in an uniformed scent. The last item(s), I am going to show you is the Niven Morgan Floral Amber Hand Soap & Hand Lotion set. It comes beautifully wrapped in a white organza draw string bag ready to go. After unwrapping the bag you will find that both bottles come in at 9.5 fl oz each and retails altogether at $34.00.
After using the hand soap I was quite amazed with the amount of bubbles. It was just like a miniature sized bubble bath but for hands! best of all, it was easily rinsed off along with the germs. One of the things that I noticed was there wasn’t a real need for the lotion because the soap is really gentle and rather soothing and moisturizing. It doesn’t dry out the skin. A quick glance at the back of the bottle tells me that there are Aloe Vera, White Tea, and Vitamins A, C, and E.
The other item inside the white organza draw string bag is the match hand lotion. A single pump of the lotion gives your hands a lightweight and quick absorption. The lotion is very refreshing and non-greasy while it holds Aloe Vera, Amica, Shea Butter, and Algae.
Here is a quick glance at the lotion applied on the back of my hand.
You can safely enjoy all Niven Morgan products without the fear or Paraben or Animal Testing. Hence the picture of the man with the horse, cat, and dog in perfect harmony.
Niven Morgan makes high quality products that you can enjoy at the comfort of your own home without going to the spa. Heck! Niven Morgan is SPA Grade quality. The products are like flowing with gold inside the bottles because of how soothing and relaxing it brings to the mind and soul. For Valentine’s, this would actually be the perfect present to share with your loved ones. Who doesn’t want to feel relaxed and pampered?
Britney's Big Day
By Michelle Tauber
Happy Tears and Talk of Babies: Britney Spears and Kevin Federline Open Up About Their Surprise Nuptials
"The two of them wanted to plan everything together," says Alyson Fox, who coordinated the wedding along with her mom, Diane Levine. Guests—who tossed rose petals (right) after the ceremony—received a photo frame and a keychain (above) along with a candle from Niven Morgan.
D210 TV and Takiyah Wallace celebrated the launch of the new Niven Morgan Collection Mustique and benefit the Clayton Dabney Foundation for Kids with Cancer.