Why We Chose Place d’Armes Hotel in the French Quarter
Choosing a hotel for our Wicked Women Weekend in New Orleans was not easy. The French Quarter is full of fabulous accommodations, all with rich history and many with documented hauntings. But we listed our criteria, stuck to our intentions with our trip, and decided on the ONLY hotel in Jackson Square.
Place d’Armes Hotel
New Orleans was founded in 1718, and in 1722, while still a French Crown Colony, Jackson Square was a military parade ground called Place d’Armes. It was the center of the French Quarter – then known as the Vieux Carre and the area designated for military drills and ceremonies. And executions…
Tragic History of Place d’Armes and Jackson Square
The original building of the Place d’Armes Hotel was built in 1725 as the first school in French Colonial Louisiana, the Capuchin School, founded by Father Raphael. However, the school fell victim to the great fires of 1788 and burnt down, killing the headmaster and taking the lives of many students and teachers.
During the 1811 German Coast Uprising, one of the largest slave rebellions in U.S. history, a two-day march was led by a group of revolutionaries down River Road to New Orleans, where they would meet up with other revolutionaries. They chanted “Freedom or Death” and set fire to plantations along the way. This incited a brief but terribly bloody battle between the enslaved revolutionaries and plantation owners backed by the Louisiana militia.
The battle killed dozens of fighting slaves, with the surviving leaders taken into custody to face a tribunal on January 13, 1811. Most were sentenced to death by firing squad. Then, their heads were placed on spikes that started at Place d’Armes and continued for 60 miles downriver. An unforgivable brutality meant to prove a point.
Place d’Armes Today
There are seven historic buildings that comprise the Place d’Armes Hotel. The heart of the property at 623-625 St. Ann was owned by Angelo Glorioso, a Sicilian immigrant, in 1903. It served as his residence and grocery warehouse. Mr. Glorioso died in 1951 and left the property to his only daughter, Mary Ann Glorioso Valentino. Ms. Glorioso Valentino’s family still owns and operates the historic hotel property today.
And what about those ghosts?
There are plenty of hauntings at the Place d’Armes Hotel. Visitors and staff have reported footsteps, children’s laughter, and the unnerving sound of furniture moving in empty unoccupied guest rooms. The ghostly apparition of a little girl has appeared to some, asking for her grandmother. As well as an older bearded man dressed in period clothing who graciously nods at onlookers before vanishing into the night.
In fact, a woman who stayed in a balcony room noted that she saw a man on the balcony adjacent to hers, and they chatted. Later, she approached a hotel clerk in the lobby and asked about the “cool man” neighboring her room. The clerk looked the room number up and said, “There’s nobody in that room next to you.” She assured the clerk she had spoken to a man, and the clerk replied, “That’s our ghost!”
When the woman checked out of the hotel, she mentioned her experience to another guest services person. They empathized with her confusion and let her know that she wasn’t alone – Many guests talk about chatting with an older bearded man in period clothing, which then seems to vanish right before their eyes. They all believe that he is the headmaster of the Capuchin School, who lost his life in the devastating fire that destroyed the original building.
The Place d’Armes = Perfect Choice
The Place d’Armes was the clear choice for us:
- Perfectly located in Jackson Square
- Close to everything the French Quarter has to offer
- Paranormal Activity
We hope to have you with us on our Wicked Women Weekend in New Orleans – We look forward to hearing about your paranormal experiences from your stay at Place d’Armes!