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  • Edgar Degas HouseEdgar Degas House New Orleans, Louisiana
    The Edgar Degas House and Museum, is a New Orleans historic landmark, and located just a couple of blocks from the French Quarter, on Esplanade Avenue. In the reconstruction of the city, after the Civil War, around 1872, impressionist master artisan Edgar Degas came to the city from France to visit his maternal Creole family, the Mussons. While he spent the next 18 months at the home, he would share the marvelous house with 18 other people; but since his eyesight was going bad, he spent most of his time in his bedroom, which he had turned into a studio. It was here that Edgar would paint 22 works of art, one called the Estelle, was bought by the Delgado Museum and he began to pioneer the impressionist movement that would change the world of painting, and increase the importance of this historical home even more so. Another fact that is well known by the locals is the house is the only studio of Degas in the world that is open to public viewing. Currently, the home is divided into two separate dwellings, the Musson house on the left, where Degas' bedroom and studio is still the same, and the Degas house to the right, which both share the magnificent courtyard in between and is the place for many social and cultural functions. The Degas House renovation has been the recipient of many awards and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places; as well as being a member of the AAM or American Association of Museums. The beautiful home has been transformed into a unique bed and breakfast, with large, oversized rooms and luxuriant bathrooms. Every room and suite is named after the Mussons or Degas family, while the Degas House is used for other venues than just a bed and breakfast; it has become a cultural center for special event venues. The Degas House owner, David Villarubia, has just been awarded the Chevalier de Arts en Lettres (knighthood in the French order of arts and letters) for his devotion to the preservation of a bonafide French culture in the city of New Orleans that concluded with a spectacular ceremony that was held on-site. David is also the executive producer of the documentary film, "Degas in New Orleans- A Creole Sojourn".  The Degas House was constructed in 1852, when the Esplanade was being built and was one of the first built there, taking up almost the entire block. The house was cut in two in the 1920s and the wing was turned to make two separate houses. Another of his famous paintings is the detailed scene of Michel Musson's office at his cotton business, entitled, "Portraits in an Office: the New Orleans Cotton Exchange, 1873, Musee des Beaux-Arts, Pau. This painting was the first of Degas that was ever purchased by a museum and it is doubly important since it marks the start of the impressionist art movement. One noteworthy addition is the fact that one of the tour guides at the house is none other than the great grand niece of Edgar Degas himself.

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  • Confederacy of Cruisers Bike ToursConfederacy of Cruisers Bike Tours New Orleans, Louisiana
    Confederacy of Cruisers Bike Tours of New Orleans, Louisiana is one of those touring company that was born out of a great need and desire to share a city well loved, known and enjoyed everyday. Jeff Shyman is the owner, operator, tour guide, and all that, who lives in the city and enjoys sharing the marvels that have been part of the mystery and fun of the city that is more known for its Mardi Gras and the devastation of Hurricane Katrina. Before the Cruisers tour came to town, you would have to travel by van or bus or just walk, which limited the amount of fantastic sights of this unique city. He is the only guide, fixes the bikes when they have a problem and solves all your problems while he shows you his city, all the best places, and tells you all the best stories. There is no better way to see, learn and enjoy a city then to get on a fat tired bike and just leisurely ride around, getting some exercise, learning about the many attractions that brought you here and the best way to enjoy. Bigger tour companies hire people to show you around and well, you how that can be, since we have been on tours where the guide had a bad night, or fight with their spouse, drank too much the night before, or any number of reasons why they are having a bad day; which always reflects on the kind of tour enjoyment you will get, or not get. With the Cruisers tour, you'll find and visit all the local spots that are well known and some you haven't heard of but will learn all about and be glad you used the service. Any time you meet someone who is passionate about their work, you know that you are going to have a great time and experience, coming away with much more than you planned or thought of. Jeff knows what makes a great tour more personal, which is why he does it all himself, making sure you get up close and personal with all the wonders and mysteries of the city that never sleeps. The city is known as the Big Easy, and that is exactly the kind of tour you are going to enjoy with Jeff, he makes sure you are riding tirelessly, effortlessly and enjoying all the sights, sounds, smells, smiles and more. He gives you the kind of tour that he would want and expect when he travels to a distant land or city, and wants to learn all the important history, stories and delights. Can the bigger tours get more personal than that? Can they take you to the hidden bakeries that serve up the best rolls, donuts or coffee? The tour is 3 hours long, and you just ride your cruiser along the way, enjoying all the best that New Orleans has to offer. He will make sure that you are more than pleased, he wants you to leave gushing with nothing but the most wonderful day, tour, trip you have ever had. The city is one of the oldest in the nation, full of marvelous architecture and history, with diverse cultural sights and sounds, filling you with more than you could have hoped for and what better way than a bike, stopping whenever you want, getting a drink along the way or just to stop and muse over some sight, monument, exotic house or tree or anything that would catch your fancy. So, the on your next trip to New Orleans, after you are tired of all the bars, clubs, music and such, take the time to learn about this incredible city that is coming back from one of the worst disasters in American history, and that is another story and bike tour.

January 11, 2011