Thursday, July 9, 2015

North Carolina: Biltmore Estate

I loved my visit to Biltmore Estate with three of my adult daughters. One of them was flying home out of Asheville, two hours from the mountain cabin in Boone, so we decided to make a day of it! The daughter on the right is a ceramics major with a strong interest in landscape design, so she was super excited!

Biltmore is the creation George Vanderbilt, grandson of industrialist and philanthropist Cornelius Vanderbilt. It was started in 1889 and officially opened to family and friends with an 1895 Christmas gala. His descendants opened the home to the public as a tourist attraction in 1930 as a generous way of alleviating Asheville's economic woes during the Depression.

Our tickets were $60+tax each, but are less if you buy on-line a week in advance. Right now, children ages 16 and under are free.

I have saved most of the flower pictures for a separate post here: The Gardens at Biltmore Estate.

Here we go:

miles of wooded roads
within the sprawling estate

Biltmore is the
largest home
in the United States,
but don't worry -
you will only walk through
a few dozen of the 250 rooms,
which takes about 2 hours.
Be prepared for stairs!
If you want to see more rooms,
you can take a Premium tour.

guarding the castle

in the planters
near the front steps

not supposed to
take photos inside,
but someone (not me!) did

Being the philosopher and poet that I am, as I walked through the estate, I pondered about the lessons I wanted to take away from Biltmore. What did they have that I could incorporate into my home (on a much smaller scale, to the best of my penny-pinching-mother-of-10 ability)? The words that I tapped into my iPhone:

  • innovation - the latest technology available at the time for efficiency and comfort
  • hospitality - dozens of guest rooms, and every possible amenity for the well-being of their many guests, which included diplomats and other VIP's
  • variety - so many different things to see! Rooms had different themes.
  • legacy - this was built to stand the test of time, and as a historical, architectural, and artistic gift to future generations
  • fine art - paintings and sculptures by world renowned artists, 16th century tapestries - a feast for the eyes!
  • books - a 10,000 volume library!
  • gardens - colors, shapes, textures, arrangements - gorgeous!
And that's what we saw after the house - the many gardens! 

down to the gardens

Italian Garden

view from the terrace

Antler Village,
still on the estate
but miles from the house,
has a museum, winery tour,
shops, petting farm,
and more.

driving home through
the Blue Ridge mountains


This is part of my North Carolina trip photo series. The other posts are:

Enjoying the beauty,

1 comment:

  1. Flowers are just beautiful gifts from the heavens. :)


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