Tuesday, January 10, 2006
We topped our journey off in Asheville, North Carolina with a New Year’s Eve candlelight tour of George Vanderbilt’s country home—the Biltmore.
This darling little cottage in the hills has 250 rooms and over 4 acres of floorspace!
It was first opened on Christmas Eve 1895 and has been open to the public since 1930.
There are 43 bathrooms. Amazing. Especially when you consider practically no one had indoor plumbing when this place was built. There’s even an indoor swimming pool and bowling alley.
They won’t let you take pictures inside the house. Booo. But we made sure to take as many as we could outside.
I just love all of the gargoyles and statuary.
George Vanderbilt's Asheville estate was at one time over 125,000 acres. This consisted of the mansion, farms, gardens and woodlands. Today, only 8,000 of the original remain in the Vanderbilt family.
Along with the house, there is a working vineyard and winery, two inns, and a farm village. You can still visit the gardens, originally designed by Frederick Law Olmstead, who also designed New York’s Central Park.
It was a beautiful way to end 2005 and begin 2006.
Happy New Year!