Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Summer Dress

Taken directly from Internatinal House New Orleans

For generations New Orleanians have upheld the tradition of altering their homes for summer and winter in response to climactic conditions. As winter gives way to summer, wool gives way to sisal rugs and cotton slip covers, which allow furnishings to breathe during the months of heat and humidity found in this semi-tropical climate.

With the advent of summer, International House enters the season with a change of light, design and rituals. In an effort to fulfill this hope, International House transforms its lobby by dressing it for summer and the more relaxed, languid lifestyle, which accompanies it. Guests will discover cotton slipcovers with mocha piping on the furniture and sisal rugs in place of formal upholstery and throw rugs. Likewise, the lobby is accessorized with indigenous banana leaves, palms, fragrant floating blossoms and spiraling topiary. This soothing, relaxing environment is sure to induce most guests to spend at least a portion of their day happily lounging. International House not only looks outwardly to create the ambiance within, but also inwardly with the furnishings designed by local artisans.

In keeping with this time, staff members add to the mix by dressing in taupe and cream colored seersucker suits, which may be recognized as a sartorial statement honored by most New Orleanians. Seersucker is arguably the most unique fashion statement in the city. It is common to see a veritable pilgrimage of businessmen dressed in the more traditional blue and white seersucker meandering around CBD streets at lunchtime.

Guests may discover the depth, diversity and beauty of celebrated traditions related to African-American and folk communities. Beautifully, they have given us jazz, ragtime and blues music. They have given us that rich culinary delight which is Creole cooking and they have provided us with intriguing days of observance, rooted rituals known to locals International House proudly shares these celebrations with their guests. Whether it is the RaRa festival on April 2, or a festival steeped in Voodoo lore, St. John's Eve, June 24, or Louis Armstrong's Birthday, July 14, guests can peer into these longstanding rituals. Each night, a hotel staff member places a "picayune card" at each bedside to not only wish pleasant dreams and a good night's rest but to explain the current ritual. It is not uncommon to stumble upon a jazz funeral with its famed second-line or spontaneous parade of the Mardi Gras Indians.

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