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Case Study

The Historic New Orleans Collection

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The Historic New Orleans Collection (THNOC) is a museum, research center and publisher in the French Quarter. The museum planned for nearly 15 years to acquire, build, renovate and plan a $38 million expansion of its museum facilities. Located at 520 Royal Street, the new exhibition center doubles the museum’s public gallery space for original artifacts and utilizes state-of-the-art technology to tell the stories of the rich history of New Orleans. The new exhibition space is located at the site of the Seignouret-Brulatour house, a 12,000 square foot mansion in the heart of the French Quarter.  

In addition to renovating the historic building and courtyard, THNOC also added a purpose-built new construction space, and developed multiple new exhibitions including an ongoing “History of the French Quarter” exhibition, and the debut exhibition, “Art of the City: Postmodern to Post-Katrina” a contemporary art exhibition featuring more than 75 painters, sculptors, and more whose works reveal the influence New Orleans has on artists. 

With multiple ongoing projects, THNOC set out to make the grand opening of its new exhibition space worthy of the $38 million and 15 years spent developing their big idea. THNOC wanted to celebrate their commitment to the community, mark a milestone moment for the organization, cultivate and strengthen relationships within the community, maximize media exposure and position THNOC as the premier institution dedicated to the curation of New Orleans history.  

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To commemorate the grand opening of The Historic New Orleans Collection’s new property, THNOC turned to Gambel to help the organization plan and execute a series of grand opening events to celebrate and generate interest in the community. The grand opening events included hard hat tours, media tours, a ribbon cutting, two VIP cocktail events and a block party.  Gambel Communications assumed the role of coordinator for these events, as well as main public relations agency for all media relations surrounding the grand opening of the new exhibition center


As a direct result of Gambel Communications’ involvement in the grand opening, THNOC received more than 2,000 visitors in its first week. Gambel facilitated more than 10 private media tours that included all four local stations and secured a myriad of morning shows and news segments for the museum. Gambel Communications also secured front page coverage of the grand opening in the two top local newspapers, and national coverage for the opening. The press conference was attended by all 4 leading news stations and the Shop at the Collection doubled its sales in the first weekend. 

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