The food, the music, the energy, the history—New Orleans is world-famous for a number of reasons, but perhaps the city’s biggest draw is its vibrant, diverse architecture, especially when it comes to homes. Residences in New Orleans range from cozy to opulent, traditional to quirky, and each neighborhood has its own unique style. Here’s a rundown of four of the city’s most dynamic neighborhoods and the types of historic home designs found in them.
Easily the most famous area of the city, the historic Vieux Carré (along with the nearby Tremé and Marigny neighborhoods) is home to some of the most quintessentially “New Orleans” house designs. Take for instance the Creole cottage, one of the oldest home styles in the city. With their steeply pitched roofs and symmetrical, four-opening facades, these classic homes sit right up on the sidewalk.
Also found in the French Quarter area and nearby Central Business District are Creole townhouses, two- to four-story homes that often have commercial space on the ground floor. These are most known for their wrap-around balconies, complete with intricate ironwork.
Taking the streetcar is one of the best ways to see the home designs found in the beautiful Garden District. Double gallery houses reign in this neighborhood. Similar to townhouses, these two-story homes sit much farther back on the property and boast covered porches, columns, and asymmetrical facade openings.
The predominant house style in the Bywater is the classic shotgun, perfect for the long, skinny lots found in this part of town. With their side-sloping rooflines and modest front porches, shotgun homes are typically one room wide and have no hallways—the rooms simply line up one after the other, straight through to the back.
Larger homes abound in Uptown, especially centerhall houses. These one-and-a-half-story abodes have five openings across the front, the center one a door leading to the main hallway. With their raised frames and spacious porches, centerhalls are some of the most luscious properties in the whole city.
Just as the culture and history of New Orleans are vastly diverse, so too is the selection of home designs across the Crescent City. Historic renovations can help preserve these notable and unique styles of homes for many years to come.