March 23, 2015

Belated Galentine's Day

Finally! A trip to the Biltmore. You'll remember from a few weeks ago when my friend Alexandra was here I had planned to take her to the Biltmore Estate and that plan tragically fell through.


Castle DIY


So this past weekend, I finally got to go with some girlfriends and it was an absolute blast. We traveled northbound to the Biltmore Estate which, if you're unfamiliar with it, is the largest residential home in the United States, located in Asheville, NC. 

A very brief history goes something like: a guy (Cornelius Vanderbilt) born into a wealthy family did wealthy people things and hired a town's worth of people to build him a house over the course of six years. According to the website, "the finished home contains over four acres of floor space, including 35 bedrooms, 43 bathrooms, and 65 fireplaces." It also has a bowling alley, indoor pool, a dining hall with a tremendously long table and 70 foot high ceilings, and 2.5 miles of winding garden paths throughout the estate. It is also home to Antler Hill Village & Winery. The place is unbelievable. It is incredible. If you're ever in the area I encourage you to check it out.

By the time we got to Asheville it was about noon, so we stopped for a quick lunch down the street from the estate. The restaurant we chose is well worth the drive itself, honestly. The place is called Biscuit Head and it is a little mom and pop biscuit joint, which - if you live in the South - you know is a staple of Southern Cuisine. I ordered a biscuit with pork sausage gravy and a side of bacon and it was amazing. Completely delicious. 10/10 would order again.


We drove to the estate, parked and took a little ride on the shuttle to the front of the gates. The place is just breathtaking. It is truly something out of a Jane Austen novel. The home is situated on 125 acres of land, beautifully manicured with statues and gardens and stone adornments. 


We had a 1 o'clock house viewing and as expected, it was fairly crowded. The first few rooms of the house were full of people, so it was a bit slow moving. But the tour is self paced, and just for curiosity's sake, I had rented an audio guide. It proved to be very informative and I would recommend to anyone interested in the history of the home. We got one for the group and I recited back what I thought were interesting facts to the girls (who were only sort of paying attention to me). It took us about 2 hours to get through the house and our conversation kept reverting back to how people could possibly live there. I cannot imagine having a house so big that it took me 20 minutes to get from my bedroom to the kitchen when there are snacks to be had. 


Off to the side of the property is the original stable where you can purchase souvenirs, various food items, and have a walkabout the chocolate shop or a lunch in the Stable Cafe. The place was a mob scene, as to be expected on such a beautiful day, so we didn't make it to the Cafe, but it will be on my list of to-do's for the next visit for sure.


After our house tour, we walked through one of the gardens and into the green houses or "walled gardens" as they are referred to on property signage. This weekend was the first of the "Spring Blossom" series, so many of the flowers outside still hadn't bloomed. The green houses, however, were flourishing with color and vibrant hues. Thousands of orchids, tulips, daffodils, gardenias, vines, trees, hibiscus and many, many other blooms cover the walls of these conservatories. It really is lovely.


From the gardens, we headed back to the car and took a leisurely drive four miles across the estate to the winery. We enjoyed a free wine tasting and ice cream from the estate creamery in the village. I purchased a house bottle of spring edition rosé and shortly thereafter, we headed out. I had an absolutely wonderful time with fantastic company. Cannot wait to do it again!










The Biltmore Estate

XOXO

4 comments:

  1. So glad you finally got to go! Looks beautiful!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It was a great time - I wish you could have gone. Oh well, something for your next visit!

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  2. Gorgeous pictures! You ladies look beautiful! And love the modesty patch- I giggled ;)

    Katie @ www.runningaragnar.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! And I know it's art ... but I just felt like I couldn't leave it all out there!

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