Week in Review, May 29-June 2: Andrea’s Restaurant, Homewood Suites, Audubon Aquarium and Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium

NEW ORLEANS (press release) – Jefferson Parish is abuzz with the news of Andrea’s Restaurant changing hands yet again—this time joining the likes of Broussards, New Orleans Social House and The Bombay Club under the Creole Cuisine Restaurant Concepts portfolio. When Founder and Chef, Andrea Apuzzo (who opened the restaurant in 1985), first sold the restaurant last summer to local real estate developer Anthony A.P.” Marullo III, the plan was to turn the 12,000-square-foot restaurant space into a multifaceted Italian restaurant and event venue called Marullo’s. However, plans changed when Marullo decided he wanted to spend more time with his family. The recent sale to Creole Cuisine Restaurant Concepts means that guests can expect the same top-notch quality found at the hospitality group’s other restaurants, but, this time, as a a steak and seafood house.

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Homewood Suites by Hilton New Orleans, which originally opened in 2002, has undergone a multimillion-dollar renovation. The hotel, which was last renovated in 2014, now has a music theme—with an art package by Atlanta-based fine art consulting firm Faulkner + Locke—that focuses on the city’s storied musical past. The 166-suite hotel on the corner of Baronne and Poydras streets now has a truer sense of place within the city it calls home, plus all-new decor by Boston-based Group One Partners. The architectural, interior design and procurement firm upgraded not only the guest rooms but also the hotel’s public spaces with new furnishings, soft goods, and wall and floor coverings.

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Meanwhile, the highly anticipated reopening of the Audubon Aquarium after a $40 million dollar reimagining and renovation, and the relocation of Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium from the U.S. Custom House on Canal Street to the aquarium campus on the river, will take place June 8. This project—the biggest renovation of the aquarium since it opened on Canal Street in 1990—will include nearly 17,000 square feet of new exhibit space constructed inside the existing walls of the aquarium as well as 2,500 square feet of the existing aquarium breezeway that will be enclosed to create a shared public lobby. The combined experience re-envisions Audubons downtown guest experience and educational programming.

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