Thursday, January 7, 2010

Christmas at the Biltmore Estate

The Gardener and I took a short little trip to Asheville to celebrate his birthday. We visited the Biltmore Estate - one of our favorite places for a getaway. The Mansion was still decorated in Christmas tradition and was simply beautiful. Here is just a little glimpse into this magnificent home and the holiday decorations that were so resplendent there. (Cameras are not really allowed inside the Mansion - so my disclaimer is that I do not know how these pictures appeared on my cell phone---)

After touring the Mansion, we enjoyed the most wonderful buffet dinner at the DeerPark restaurant on the estate. The restaurant and courtyard were decorated with hundreds of lights - it was a magical sight.
We spent the night in Asheville and headed to the montaintop town of Montreat, just outside of Ashville. Our purpose was to visit the Montreat College Campus and to see the fresco inside the Chapel of the Prodigal. Unfortunately, the Chapel was closed because the college was on holiday break. So we will visit there another time to see the fresco - but we so enjoyed our visit to the College Campus. The little snow covered campus was truly beautiful---

Behind the bookstore was this little dam, a perfect place for respite don't you think? The campus housed a beautiful bookstore, a general store, and one of my favorite stores Ten Thousand Villages.

The campus is home to a very friendly family of Mallard ducks and swans that live on the lake there. Their colors were so vivid and beautiful. We threw out a few crackers and made "instant" friends with them all!

After leaving Montreat - we drove to the town of Black Mountain. This little town is filled with a variety of craft shops, antique shops, and eclectic shops of all kinds. Nestled among the montains, this town was just the perfect place to spend an afternoon. We had so much fun shopping and walking arond the town. We had a wonderful lunch at the Veranda Restaurant (my Hungarian Mushroom soup was to die for!) They would not share their recipe (bummer) but I am going to make my own, so watch for that soon to come to the blog!

The Gardener found a wonderful display of model airplanes - he was a happy boy!

Everything was on sale after Christmas - yea! - and I bought this beautiful winter wreath.
The Gardener made best friends with one of the local shop kitties!
The train depot has now been restored into a local arts and crafts gallery. There is some serious shopping to be done in this little town. We will definitely be returning----


The Rustic Victorian said...

Oh how wonderful to go to the Biltmore Estate, I have only seen it on TV. Lucky you!

Lorraine @ creativedaily said...

Thank you for sharing these wonderful photos. Looks as if this area will be added to my bucket list...