Tuesday, July 28
Frances and Rodney Smith
The charming Soniat House is one of the most acclaimed luxury boutique hotels in New Orleans. It has been named by Travel and Leisure as "one of the best hotels in the world" and it's been included in Michael Kors' New Orleans Address Book.
The hotel was created twenty years ago by combining three historic Creole town-houses in the quiet residential section of the French Quarter. Two of the houses were built in 1830 by Joseph Soniat, a plantation owner who needed a house in New Orleans when visiting with his large family. Just four years later his oldest son built an even larger house. The three have since become one.
While in New Orleans we were treated to a tour of the splendid Soniat House. However, before the hotel tour, owners Frances and Rodney Smith were gracious enough to give us a grand tour of their beautiful home decorated by Nicky Haslam. One of the worlds most distinguished interior designers, and renowned for his opulent interiors, Nicky's work had been published in Architectural Digest, World of Interiors, Vogue, House and Garden, Elle Décor and Traditional Home. Notice the jib door leading to the dining room.
The remarkable hotel renovation by Rodney and Frances Smith has won every local award imaginable, as well as national praise for its sensitive design and the striking guest rooms.
The glorious details—spiral stairs, balconies and patios are all original. Courtyards explode with lush sweet olive, magnolia, guava and ginger.
Rodney and Frances travel the world selecting just the right antiques for their beautiful hotel and their antiques shop, Soniat Antiques.
Soniat Antiques has been featured in Architectural Digest, Southern Accents, House Beautiful, and Town and Country. The collection is primarily 18th and early 19th century French furniture and decorative accessories, including a superb collection of Italian lighting, both sconces and chandeliers. Soniat Antiques and Soniat House are a MUST stop on your next trip to the Big Easy.