Nice to see you're still busy cruising
Yes, you should cruise out of NOLA. And if you do, you HAVE to go in at least a couple of days early. It's at least a couple day city.
Hilton Riverside is nice and in a great location, next to RiverWalk close to the pier area, and a short walk to the French Quarter.
We stayed at Harrahs, which we also found a good location.
Then of course there's plenty of more "period hotels" in the French Quarter if you want more of that atmosphere.