I took a trip to the Biltmore in Asheville, North Carolina for the third time in my life and I brought my teens. What you ask is the Biltmore? If you are asking that then probably you are not from the south, or in fact, most likely not from the states. Why did I bring my teens over the holidays when being a teen means: in school, on your phone, how many likes on Instagram, and what’s your snap chat? Me, I was thinking where will you be going to college a year from now? But first I must show them something important to me: history, beauty, architecture, and my connection to the past. Quite simply, I love the Victorian era and this is pretty darn close, as close as I’ll ever get to it.
Take a personal tour with me as these are photographs by me and for my personal use on my blog ‘theivorytide.’ The Biltmore Estate in Asheville does not allow photographs for monetary gain and I can see why as they have transformed the place since first opening to the public on a grand scale. I encourage you to visit and take your family with you. Yes, I would take the teens again as I knew it would open their eyes but, of course, we all know teens need prodding in a positive-encouraging type of way. Above is the garden room and it is my favorite room on the first floor. I can imagine myself sitting there with folks from a bygone era discussing important matters (like wars, railroads, and prohibition), possibly what to add on to the mansion next, or admiring the ferns in abundance.
The official dining room is magnificent with its height and grandeur of size encompassing a large live Christmas tree, table and chairs fit for a King and Queen with all their friends, ancient-like tapestries with story telling stitches, and animal heads of state. Animals on the wall; you ask why? Because hunting was more than sport, it was protein for the body and sustenance which lasted a good long while. The chandelier is especially gorgeous and for me it looks medieval or Spanish in nature. I am no way near an aficionado on such items so please correct me if you know differently. Remember, this is a personal post to my blog about something that I love. What are those teens thinking? Soon you will see.
Is this not a beautiful gingerbread house adorned with snow, reindeer’s, wreaths, and holly? I made gingerbread cookies every year up to a few years ago when I gave up on it. I lost that loving Christmas spirit-yes, life gets to you at times. Then somewhere a miracle happens or maybe you climb out of that dungeon and walk among the snowflakes again cherishing everything so important to you. This beautiful place reminded me of the things I love and the things I used to look forward to like special holidays, grandparents, and cheer. Later on towards the night we went to the Grove Park Inn to eat and saw the winner’s of their annual gingerbread house contest. I had always wanted to go and see that and had never made it . Now I got to see it and it was special indeed.
Do they look interested yet? The Biltmore Estate is like nothing they have ever seen before! These teens have grown up on Hanna Montana, Disney, Fairly Odd Parents, princess movies and more in the car, You-Tube, cell phones, Instagram, and now they were seeing something bigger and real, unlike anything they had ever witnessed. There is so much history here you cannot believe it. I was glad I brought them. Still, they were walking on the ground floor. Would they get bored? I didn’t know. Above picture shows their dad instructing them on something he remembered from past visits with me. We didn’t get the audio tour as we’d remembered fairly well. I’d purchased tour books years ago with all the details and even visited the winery the first or second year it opened.
Back to the garden room where they showcase lovely red poinsettias and greenery on the tiled floor with glass ensconced wooden beams above. We had our picture taken here and purchased Christmas ornaments for next year’s tree. About this time I noticed the teens looking at their phones, something everyone does now a days, at least several times a day!
A quick break outside and off to the stables for shopping and lunch before we hit the outside veranda and second floor. Straight ahead in the photo is the old stables that were used for horses and carriages, guests included, which now they have made into outdoor eating, shops and a pub styled grille inside the horses stables complete with their own brew. I had a tomato and bacon grilled cheese sandwich with a superb tasting brew of theirs. I wanted to buy some to go but didn’t see that option. I will tell you and I’m not kidding, it was the best lunch ever!
I call the above picture blondes with boots. Do you remember what its like to be a teen? Having to be stylish while your mother and father took you to a gigantic museum? And they didn’t bring your friends? Stay tuned and come back for part two of Teens Visit the Biltmore.
Photography by me. Nothing may be copied or duplicated from this site. No sharing or re-blogging. I’m practicing my photography, writing, touring skills for blog use from a personal perspective. Let me know what you think.