Big spenders expected in New Orleans for the Super Bowl

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Whether it’s the 49ers or the Ravens who walk away with the win at the Super Bowl, every restaurant, bar, hotel, and retail shop is hoping to cash in big! That’s especially true for locals selling big ticket items from jewelry to real estate.

“We’re going to be so busy,” says real estate agent Finis Shelnutt.

Shelnutt, who became somewhat of a celebrity in the months after Katrina for feeding first responders in the French Quarter, says while the hotels and renters may be making a small fortune this weekend, what he’s looking forward to are the fans who fall in love with the Crescent City and decide to make this at least one of their homes.

“Most of them are like little toys,” Shelnutt explains. “They are like second and third homes for them.”

And Shelnutt says he’s already seeing signs that this weekend will be a big success: “People that are calling me, they are setting up appointments, they are wanting to see real estate.”

Shelnutt says he’s seen some great real estate impulse buying for the rich and (sometimes) famous during big city events before, like Mardi Gras the final four and even during the holidays.

“I’ve sold property on Christmas Eve unexpected,” he says. “Walking down the street, come into my office. This is going to happen this week. It will happen with the people flying in.”

Landmark Aviation at Lakefront Airport is one of the 3 private air fields where the rich and famous will arrive.

“We’ll see probably 6 weeks worth of aircraft in 4 days,” explains Addie Fanguy. “Probably 3/4 of the airport will be covered in planes.”

And some of those planes worth tens of millions of dollars, according to Fanguy: “We have the new Gulfstream 650 which is the fastest business jet on the market now.”

Local fine arts and jewelry store owner Rick Sutton says high end businesses on Royal Street are more than ready for the private aircraft to arrive.

“They’ve been working on the streets for quite some time, so it’s been hard on all businesses on Royal Street, so this is a big weekend for us,” Sutton said.