The Lakefront neighborhoods are in close proximity to the University of New Orleans and Lakeshore Drive, where cyclists, rollerbladers and joggers take full advantage of the open space and views. The five-mile drive along Lakeshore Drive offers lovely views of Lake Pontchartrain and the beautifully-restored lakefront.
The Lakefront supports an avid sailing culture with marinas and yacht clubs. The New Orleans Yacht Club, which was founded in 1949, annually hosts or co-hosts over 30 regattas a year on the lake and opened up only sixty days after Hurricane Katrina. The New Orleans Yacht Club is also a private club, offering sailing lessons, cruises and social events. The Lakefront is home to an array of restaurants, attracting diners with commanding views of Lake Pontchartrain, live music, and menus focusing on seafood and local favorites.
The Lakefront is also home to the historic Old Spanish Fort. Fort St. John was originally built by the French in 1701 to protect the Lake Pontchartrain entrance to the Bayou St. John trade route. The Spanish later fortified and enlarged the structure, which was decommissioned in 1823. The land was later sold to a developer who turned the area into an amusement park attracting 19th-century visitors seeking respite from the city and cool breezes from the lakefront.
Lake Vista was originally developed from marshland and is located on the shores of Lake Pontchartrain. Its most attractive feature is its split from the conventional linear alignment of streets in favor of an arrangement of cul de sac streets, all leading to a central community center with tree-lined pedestrian lanes in between. This design results in diagonal parks accessible to all homes. An easy identifier of the Lake Vista neighborhood is all of the streets named after birds: Swan, Wren, Hawk, Swallow, etc.
The East & West Lakeshore and Lake Terrace neighborhoods have a traditional design with linear streets that extend to nearby neighborhood parks and major boulevards offering convenience and easy access to shopping. The architectural inventory includes traditional, newer construction homes and offers some of the best examples of mid-century modern architecture in the city.