The Hilton Baton Rouge Capitol Center is a convenient convention hotel because of its proximity to Raising Cane’s River Center. The rooms are extremely comfortable, and the airport shuttle service is particularly appealing. It is a great lodging choice when visiting Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and as a bonus this hotel comes with intriguing history.
A great property in a convenient location
Many rooms inside the Hilton Baton Rouge Capitol Center have great views of the busy Mississippi River with its barges and ships. Other rooms have views of important city buildings. It is only four blocks from the Old Louisiana State Capitol building and is a short walk to the Raising Cane’s River Center where many entertainment and sporting events occur, in addition to numerous conventions and corporate showcases. For further explanation about the River Center, Raising Cane’s Chicken Fingers is a wildly successful fast food restaurant chain founded in Baton Rouge but now having locations across the United States.
There is also a popular riverwalk used by locals and guests for exercise, which is across the street.
Comfortable guest rooms with views of the river or the city
Guest room types include a king bed, two double beds or two queen beds with either a river view or a city view. There are 291 guest rooms available, and also several suites and an executive floor with access to the executive lounge which offers complimentary continental breakfasts Monday through Friday and complimentary cocktails and hors d'oeuvres Monday through Thursday.
Each of the guest rooms include free Wi-Fi, mini fridge, work station, flatscreen TV, coffeemaker, a safe for keeping valuables and luxurious linens on Hilton’s signature Serenity Beds.
Guest bathrooms with thoughtful amenities
I especially liked the instant hot water in the shower when I stayed at this hotel. No waiting or wondering if/when hot water would be available. The Crabtree and Evelyn toiletries were also a nice touch, and an available hairdryer helps eliminate the need to bring one from home.
Swimming pool and other provisions for guests
The outdoor pool is in a strategic spot for getting exercise, relaxing and enjoying the views along the Mississippi River. The hotel also has a fully equipped fitness center, a business center, an airport shuttle and several pet-friendly rooms.
On-site restaurant and lobby bar
Room service is offered Monday through Friday from 6:00 a.m. until 11:00 p.m., and the Kingfish Lounge prepares breakfast, lunch and dinner seven days a week. The Kingfish Grill is open for lunch and dinner in a relaxed setting. The lounge and the grill derive their name from former Louisiana Governor Huey Long’s nickname as “The Kingfish.” Long is considered by many to have been the most colorful politician in Louisiana’s history. Many past governors and politicians have dined in this exact spot.
Historic hotel with ghostly rumors
The Hilton Baton Rouge Capitol Center was originally built in 1927, and at that time, it was called the Heidelberg Hotel. Under that name it was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1982. After sitting idle for almost twenty years, Hilton bought the property and spent 70 million USD on renovations and refurbishing. It was included in the Historic Hotels of America in 2007.
The hotel was used briefly in 1931 as the Louisiana State Capitol when a power struggle broke out between then-Governor Huey Long and Lieutenant Governor Paul Cyr. Long spent a lot of time at the hotel and even had a tunnel dug from what was then the Heidelberg to the King Hotel across the street. He used the tunnel to escape his political enemies and to visit his mistress.
According to HistoricHotels.org, it is said that the tenth floor of the hotel is haunted by the ghost of Huey Long. Housekeepers report that they can occasionally detect the scent of cigar smoke in rooms they have finished cleaning. Long was a notorious cigar smoker.
In addition to Raising Cane’s River Center, the Hilton Baton Rouge is within easy walking distance to the Old Louisiana Old State Capitol building, which is now the Museum of Political History, the USS Kidd Veterans Museum and the Louisiana State University Museum of Art. Many government office buildings are within a few blocks, and the current Louisiana State Capitol building is a short drive away.
All of the qualities of a good downtown hotel
With its stellar location and storied history, the Hilton Baton Rouge Capitol Center is certainly an interesting lodging choice when you are travelling to Louisiana’s capital for business or leisure. Factor in the comfortable, well-appointed guest rooms and the on-site amenities, and you have all the reasons you need for choosing this hotel.