HOUSTON HAS A few favorite playgrounds — the Texas Hill Country, Aspen, Cabo. But none are more beloved than the sultry, always just a bit scandalous Big Easy, whose towering new Four Seasons has been described as a must-hit by H-Town’s travel-savviest. It’s the perfect place to stage CityBook’s annual Sexy Issue fashion shoot highlighting swimwear, lingerie and other racy little numbers right off the runway from Gucci, Versace and much more, oui?
Carved from the historic mid-century skyscraper formerly home to World Trade Center New Orleans, the Four Seasons and Private Residences New Orleans underwent a $450 million renovation and has reopened where Canal Street meets Old Man River. Just steps from the French Quarter and across the way from the Harrah’s casino complex now being expanded and redeveloped by Caesar’s, the hotel is a sparkling, bustling showplace of marble columns and Dom Perignon toasts under a mammoth crystal-dripping lobby chandelier — with a sleek cabana-happy pool deck overlooking the river and touting a delightful herbed frosé. Nobody’s had so much fun on the Mississippi since Huck Finn.
Unique details abound, from the speakers pumping jazzy rock tunes underwater in the pool and the spa’s citrus-scented massage inspired by Sazerac cocktails, to the fabulous Miss River restaurant’s signature chicken that’s buttermilk-marinaded and fried whole. Miss River’s chef Alon Shaya, by the way, is only one of the James Beard-winning chefs under roof; Donald Link presents Chemin à la Mer on floor five, where you can nibble foie gras while watching paddle boats go by.
But, then again, you may never leave your beautiful room, especially if you’re lucky enough to stay in the corner Presidential Suite, which has, among other well considered luxuries, a team shower of Carrera marble and lots of peekaboo glass. Now that’s sexy.
Photography by Jhane Hoang
Styling by Todd Ramos
Art Direction by Patrick Magee
Hair and Makeup by Edward Sanchez
Models: Joao Diniz, Luke Keogh, Ally Rosinsky and Marion Sealy
Styling Assistance by Aldyn Gremillion
Shot on Location at Four Seasons Hotel and Private Residences New Orleans
On Luke: Jeans, $189, by Seven for all Mankind at Neiman Marcus. On Marion: Negligée, $40, by Simone Perele at Neiman Marcus.
On Joao: Orange speedo, $19, by Aimpact on Amazon.
On Marion: Swimsuit, $330, by Maygel Coronel, and sunglasses, both at Tootsies.
On Marion and Joao: Custom swimwear by Cesar Galindo.
On Ally: One-piece swimsuit by Versace.
On Ally: Gown by Valentino with diamond necklaces, yellow-gold bangles and a rose gold ring, all at Valobra Master Jewelers.
On Ally: Suit, belt and jewelry, all by Chanel; Bella bralette, $125, by Else at Neiman Marcus.
On Joao: Swim trunks, $22, by Coofandy on Amazon.
On Ally and Marion: Custom one-piece swimsuits by Cesar Galindo.
On Marion: Dress by Gucci with onyx and diamond earrings by Valobra Master Jewelers.
On Luke: Three-piece suit by Gucci with diamond choker and studs by Valobra Master Jewelers.
On Ally: Custom swimwear by Cesar Galindo.
On Marion: Custom lingerie by Cesar Galindo.
On Marion: Dress by Gucci, black onyx earrings from Valobra Master Jewelers
On Joao: Pants by Gucci