Today, for the WeekendCoffeeShare, I am sharing my photos from Asheville, NC, at the famous Biltmore Estate, built for George Washington Vanderbilt. As a grandson of famed industrialist and philanthropist, Cornelius Vanderbilt, George came from one of America’s best-known families. In the 1880s, at the height of the Gilded Age (a time of rapid economic growth), George Washington Vanderbilt II, youngest son of William Henry Vanderbilt, began to make regular visits with his mother, Maria Louisa Kissam Vanderbilt (1821–1896), to the Asheville, North Carolina, area. He loved the scenery and climate so much, that he decided to create his own summer estate in the area, which he called his “little mountain escape”, just as his older brothers and sisters had built their grand summer houses in places such as Newport, Rhode Island and Hyde Park, New York. Vanderbilt named his estate Biltmore derived from “Bildt”, Vanderbilt’s ancestors’ place of origin in Holland, and “More”, Anglo-Saxon for open, rolling land. Vanderbilt bought almost 700 parcels of land, including over 50 farms and at least five cemeteries. A spokesperson for the estate said in 2017 that archives show much of the land “was in very poor condition, and many of the farmers and other landowners were glad to sell.” In addition to the grand Chateau-like home, Vanderbilt wanted the estate to be self-supporting. He set up scientific forestry programs, poultry farms, cattle farms, hog farms, and a dairy.
Today, many of these farms and out-buildings have been converted to shops, hotels and restaurants and the dairy is now the winery! The Biltmore Estate truly is the ideal tourist destination, especially during the holidays! Let’s see some of the grounds at Biltmore on this warm spring-like day in December! First, to one of the restaurants up near the winery!
There were so many restaurants to choose from I can’t remember for sure which one we picked!!!! I think we ate in Cedrick’s Tavern…….
But, I do know the food was fabulous and here is my dessert! Apple Caramel Cheesecake.
Now, we need to walk off that great lunch. Let’s go this way!
and on through the lovely grounds and gardens all decorated for the Christmas Holidays!
The foliage even looks Christmasy without even trying!
This is a look back up Antler Hill. You can see one of the hotels on the property from here!
And here is another way to decorate a tree for Christmas!
More foliage that fits in with the season!
One feature, which is an extension of Antler Hill, is an agricultural development made up of a vegetable patch, chicken roosts and a small log cabin. There is a large play area here and picnic tables. It is a favorite spot for the children. Those hanging lights look great at night! I came back to check!
You can book your outdoor adventures here at the log cabin!
Get ready to see more lions when we get up to the chateau! These two guard the bandstand……….
Oh look, we are at the shops………… how many are there? I must go in them all!
I loved the snowy owl tree and I am not a big fan of owls………but these guys are so adorable! And I like the ribbon, and the packages, and the red and white balls, and the long, long droopy icicles, and the silver pinecones. Go on without me! I may be here for awhile!
I hope you liked our weekend chat on some of the outdoor settings at the Biltmore…… I have spent a little too long shopping! And, only got to one part of the estate! Antler Hill! I guess I might as well buy a season ticket because I enjoyed our stay immensely!
There is simply so much to see here and we have an evening ticket for the Chateau, so I must go.
Watch for the fabulous Biltmore, dressed to the nines for Christmas! See you there!