New Orleans Louisiana is a city like no other, so when three travel influencers joined the New Orleans Tourism Marketing Corporation to take a tour of NOLA, it was anything but ordinary.
A weekend full of unforgettable memories was the running theme as travel gurus Ashley Renne, Dan Brian and Alyssa Ramos made their way through the city to kick off the first season of the NOTMC’s new IGTV travel series, Unexpected Tour Guides.
And who better to show all that the Big Easy has to offer than the Caramel Curves —New Orleans all-Black, all female motorcyle club whose stilettos are as high as their spirits.
With the help of a few Black-owned businesses and other local hotspots off the beaten path of the French Quarter, the ladies left no stone unturned as they took their unsuspecting weekends guests along for the ride of their lives to give them an unconventional look at America’s most cultured city through the eyes of those who know it best.
The first stop of the day was Congregation Coffee shop. Located in the heart of the historic Algiers Point neighborhood, the quaint shop plays host to anyone looking to grab a bite to eat and a delicious cup of coffee or tea to start the day off right.
Next, the group headed over to Lil Dizzy’s Cafe. A staple in the neighborhood for decades, Lil Dizzy’s has grown into one of the city’s most popular restaurants over the course of the past few years. The family-owned eatery serves authentic NOLA dishes that gave each of the influencers the perfect introduction to what some call the best cuisine in the country.
At Treme’s Petit Jazz Museum, the Caramel Curves brought Ashley, Alyssa and Dan face to face with the rich history of Jazz music and the New Orleans musicians who helped give birth to one of the world’s most influential genres. As America’s oldest integrated neighborhood, Treme is a central hub for Creole culture.
If you’re headed to New Orleans, you absolutely cannot leave the city without making your way over to Bayou Road. A strip filled entirely with Black-owned businesses rich in history and thriving with cultural pride, among them sits The Half Shell on the Bayou restaurant. Whether you sit inside and enjoy a delicious bowl of gumbo or head out back to enjoy your meal in the breathtaking scenery, you can’t go wrong.
As co-founder of the Caramel Curves, CoCo is a woman about her business both on and off the bike. When she’s not painting the town in a cloud of pink smoke, CoCo is keeping the neighborhood fly one hairstyle and nail design at a time at her salon, CoCo’s Unique Nails & Hair Studio. So of course, the boss lady had to bring her guests in to give them a look at where it all goes down.
To close out the night in true New Orleans fashion, the Caramel Curves took the trio over to Kermit’s Treme Mother in
Law Lounge —known locally as “Kermit’s.” Drink specials, a live band and an indescribable vibe you will only find here, Kermit’s is the place to go to unwind and experience the NOLA nightlife you came to the city for in the first place.
Watch NOTMC’s Unexpected Tour Guides series trailer above and then head over to the @VisitNewOrleans IGTV page to see exactly what happened when these travel influencers got the chance to dig deeper and discover the stories, cultures, and hidden treasures of New Orleans through the eyes of the fabulous Caramel Curves.
Headed to ESSENCE Festival this summer? Be sure to visit these local treasures for your own unconventional tour of the city. See you in NOLA!