150 3rd AvenueBaton Rouge, LA 70801
By Jane Feehan
The Watermark Hotel joined Marriott’s Autograph Collection of boutique hotels in early 2017, a few months after historic flooding hit South Louisiana. Located in downtown Baton Rouge at the site of the old Louisiana Trust and Savings Bank (1927) the Watermark’s distinction lies in its stunning décor. The touch of a master decorator can be seen everywhere, down to the table settings in The Gregory, its dining room named for New Orleans artist Angela Gregory. The magnificent entranceway or foyer pays homage to the Louisiana Purchase of 1803 with face-to-face murals of Thomas Jefferson and Napoleon Bonaparte, parties to that historic land transaction.
The rooms, as everything else, are beautiful, if not disparate in size and comfort, depending on the floor and location. I stayed in three different ones, different floors. A caveat: depending on festivities at a nearby park and the time of the year for mirth at the bars on Third Street, noise can be a problem into the wee hours. Get a room above the fourth floor (at least). Unfortunately, the best views of the Mississippi River are from rooms facing Third. Also, rooms vary widely in size. A corner room is ideal of course … and grand. My last room was a small one, which I have no problem with, but the window was covered to block sight of adjacent roofs, which I would have gladly taken over the block out pane.
|Room with a pane (!) instead of a view|
Parking runs about $20 a day but oftentimes street or lot parking is available for much less—something to keep in mind if planning a wedding or other occasion in one of the meeting rooms or for a long stay. There are plenty of places to walk to, including the river with its pleasant seating, the old Louisiana capitol building and one of the best restaurants in town, Strube’s. The Watermark Hotel does much for historic downtown Baton Rouge; it also gives the entire city some much-needed flair.
|View of the Mississippi River from a room|
|Old Louisiana Capitol, now a museum|
Tags: Marriott hotels, Marriott Autograph Collection, Baton Rouge hotels, Watermark Hotel, Louisiana travel, best hotel in Baton Rouge