My Essence Fest ’14 Experience

I know this is long over due, I really meant to write about this months ago, but I haven’t got around to doing so with work and other agendas. However I wanted to express the amazing time that I had in New Orleans, a.k.a NOLA, for the Essence Music Festival for this past 4th of July weekend. This year marked my 2nd Essence Fest. I went for the first time last year and swore to the Gods that I’ll never miss another one. Yes, it was that good. The Essence Fest has a good mixture of culture, intellect, entertainment, entrepreneurship, empowerment, parties, and good-looking men! lol The fest has a good variety to satisfy every individual young and old.

Last year we enjoyed the free concerts, free food, the actual festival at the superdome, the W-hotel day party, as well as Jill Scott and Maxwell’s concert. I have to say, seeing Maxwell in concert was a gift from the Jesus himself! I’m not even that chick who swoons over artists in concerts, but my God, Maxwell took his jacket off and I nearly fainted! lol The man has an aura and energy about him that is intense and out of this world! Definite experience I will take to the grave smiling. πŸ™‚ I also was there to witness Will Packer’s proposal to his longtime girlfriend, so that was pretty cool being that he is from my alma mater thee Florida A&M University! Sorry I had to throw that in there.

This year went a little different. I personally planned this trip and I did it a little last-minute. The last-minute part wasn’t planned, it kinda happened that way. But check this.

48 hours before July 4th, with every hotel in NOLA booked, a cancelled room freed up at The Columns Hotel.

I thanked Georgia (the sweet lady who booked our room) like it was Thanksgiving! Talk about lucky. Fotor0903120632

Oh, and the Columns Hotel is where they shot Alicia Key’s music video The Fire We Make ft. Maxwell at that same hotel. What a co-inkie-dink! πŸ˜‰ The Columns hotel is one of the BEST in NOLA. I had an amazing experience lodging there. The hotel really gives you the old New Orleans feel as though shown in Alicia Keys video. However, the best part is the breakfast!

I felt like a queen sitting on the deck eating breakfast that Sunday morning.


Some of the girls we met at Essence was actually jealous that we had a hot homemade breakfast compared to the cold cereal, ready-made eggs, and self-made waffle machine they had at the regularly known hotel chains across the country. We spent half the price they paid to stay where they stayed verses were we stayed.

Not to mention that breakfast was MADE to ORDER and COMPLEMENTARY!


The staff was super nice!

I can’t remember his name, but the guy who worked the day shift for the two days we stayed accommodated us to the highest degree. He actually upgraded our room at no charge! The best! When we first arrived I asked him for Georgia. You know to further thank her, and he looked me dead in the face and said, “Georgia who? No one named Georgia works here?” My friend Janele was already a little spooked out by the authentic-old New Orleans look of the hotel, she started to sweat. Mind boggled I said, “No, I spoke to Georgia on the phone, we talked.” He said, “No I’m serious there’s a Jessica.”Β  I said, “No, not her, Georgia.” He looked, I looked, Janele looked until he said, “Naw I’m playing she’s off today.” Sigh of relief! I thought Georgia was a ghost for a second there! smh

This year’s fest we made it to Bourbon street, of course the festival at the superdome, and the legendary W-hotel Deja-Vu Day Party. admin-ajax.php

One event I NEVER plan to miss at the fest! Hands down it’s the most memorable time yet.

Although I didn’t get to do nearly as much as the stuff I wanted to do, next year I’m definitely staying longer to experience everything and hands down, I’m staying at The Columns Hotel and am booking with Georgia! lol If you haven’t done so yet, make sure you attend the Essence Festival at least once in your life. I’ve heard you can meet your future husband/wife there. Ask Will Packer! lol

Check out more photos below of my experience at the Essence Festival! πŸ™‚


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Sarah Lee

Welcome! My name is Sarah Lee and I'm a Business Strategist and social entrepreneur who loves the outdoors, a good book, and scary movies year round! Throughout this quirky, rich, and mysterious life of mine, I genuinely love to 'share' my experiences as a learning tool. I thought, what better way to track my level of growth than by sharing my experiences and the lessons learned thereof, than in my blog? A wise woman once said, "You are your own masterpiece, therefore, instead of mastering it, master you."

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