With no storm warnings in sight, New Orleans tourism officials expect most downtown hotel rooms will be near-capacity through the Labor Day weekend.
Based on a survey of about 30 hotels — or 8,300 rooms — located in the Central Business District, French Quarter and Warehouse District neighborhoods, officials expect 88 percent occupancy for Friday, 94 percent on Saturday and 81 percent on Sunday, said Mark Romig, president and CEO of the New Orleans Tourism Marketing Corp.
“Healthy weekend — and comparable to last year,” Romig said.
More than 160,000 visitors and locals are expected to head to the Quarter for the 44th Southern Decadence, the annual gay pride festival that started Wednesday and runs through Monday.
The Louisiana Seafood Festival, which starts Friday and runs through Sunday, will feature 25 food vendors selling dozens of seafood dishes, including alligator, fish, crab, shrimp and oysters.
The three-day event also is scheduled to host daily celebrity chef cooking demonstrations in the WWL-TV Cooking Pavilion. Admission is free.