The building was originally the headquarters for Louisiana Trust Savings Bank back in 1927. It’s heralded as Baton Rouge’s first skyscraper. The moment you walk in you see the remnants of the old bank; the aged bank vaults, hand-painted ceiling murals, the grand marble staircase. This is truly a unique property in the heart of downtown Baton Rouge.
This boutique hotel has 144 rooms, two restaurants, a fitness center, car service, bicycle rentals, and valet parking (overnight $20, daily $10), among many other amenities.
A standard king room with a city view was going for $186.03 with tax. Or we could have paid $80 with tax and 14,000 Marriott Reward points but, since this is a category five property, we used the annual category 1-5 free night that comes with holding the Marriott Rewards Premier credit card. Once again, by utilizing credit cards, we were able to save $186.03 and stay at a fantastic property for free.
The valet greeted us and showed us to the reception desk. The lobby is an open space with the desk tucked in the corner. The receptionist was friendly and efficient. We didn’t get an upgrade, but this was a Saturday in Baton Rouge with LSU playing at home so I didn’t expect we would.
We were on the 10th floor in room 1014. As you walk through the hallways on the guest floors, you’ll notice artwork from local artists and a cool feature: the old mail shafts between the elevators.
I’m not exactly sure about the square footage of the room, but it was small. They did, however, design the room in a way to make it feel bigger with an open bathroom and high ceilings.
If you wanted a partition between the bathroom and bedroom, they had drapes you could pull closed.
The bed was comfortable with a semi-soft mattress and plush pillows, and each nightstand had access to an outlet.
The TV is mounted to the wall in front of the bed. Underneath is a small workstation, window seat, and Keurig coffee machine.
For all you golf fans out there they do have the Golf Channel. 🙌🏽
The city views were ok. I mean, it’s Baton Rouge not NYC.
Overall, I was pleased with the room and the comfort of the bed.
The sink and vanity are in the main room and the toilet and shower are in another room with a sliding glass door.
The toiletries are the Guild + Pepper line from Gilchrist & Soames. They were some of best I’ve seen in a hotel in a while.
Across from the sink is the closet. There you’ll find a robe, two free bottles of water, a safe, and an empty mini refrigerator. I didn’t test out the robe, so I can’t speak to how good it was.
And last, but not least, the Sunbeam Hospitality hairdryer. I can’t say I loved this one.
The fitness center is located on the second floor. It was a bit small but as long as there were no more than a couple of people in there it was fine. This was also the only time I’ve ever seen a punching bag in a hotel gym; pretty cool.
There’re two restaurants, The Milford on Third and The Gregory. The Gregory is located in the main lobby area with a bar and open kitchen design. It’s open for lunch and dinner.
There’s also a private dining table in what they call the Louisiana Purchase room.
Marianna and I only had drinks at the bar. The menus were on iPads, and they looked great. We had other obligations that evening, or else I would have eaten here for sure. Chef de Cuisine Justin Lambert is a Louisiana native and is getting some high praise for what he’s doing here.
Milford’s on Third is a deli that’s open for breakfast and lunch. It’s hidden away on the first floor behind the elevators.
We had breakfast here before we left. I had the breakfast melt. Marianna had the breakfast platter. I’m usually not too impressed with breakfast food but everything we had here was delicious. By the way, you see that Kombucha on the table? It’s made in New Orleans and it’s as good as it gets.
I normally don’t photograph meeting/conference rooms but I had to share this one with you. The conference rooms were down the marble staircase in the center of the lobby.
I assume that the vault door is the original but, either way, what a cool room.
We were only here a day, so we didn’t encounter many hotel employees but the few we did were great. The bar was busy but we never waited for a drink and service the next morning in Milford’s was efficient. I’ll give them an 8.5/10.
This hotel does such a great job embracing the building’s past while, at the same time, making it feel comfortable. I have a hard time believing there’s a better hotel in Baton Rouge than Watermark. I highly recommend staying here if you find yourself in the BR.