The Biltmore Estate, in Asheville, North Carolina, that sits on an impressive 8,000 acres was home to the Vanderbilt Family. George Washington Vanderbilt II’s family made their fortune through railroad, steamboat and other business enterprises. Vanderbilt wanted an estate to retreat to, while visiting his mother. So he along with architect, Richard Morris Hunt, created this stunning Chateauesque mansion that was built between 1889 and 1895. It boasts an impressive 4 floors, that is a total of 174, 240 square feet of living space. There are 250 rooms, 33 bedrooms, 43 bathrooms, 65 fireplaces and 3 kitchens. Not to mention an indoor heated pool, with changing rooms, an indoor winter garden and a two-story library! The home also has amazing artwork, by renowned artists John Singer Sargent, Giovanni Boldini, James Abbott McNeill Whistler and Giovanni Antonio Pellegrini. Sargent, Boldini and Whistler created some of the most stunning family portraits I have ever seen.
Not only is the mansion itself remarkable, but the landscape is absolutely breathtaking. All 8,000 was designed but the one and only Fredrick Law Olmsted. Yes, that Olmsted! The one who landscapes New York’s Central Park, the Niagara Reservation at Niagara Falls, along with other parks in California, Wisconsin, Illinois and Massachusetts. Every single tree, rose bush, grassy hill was all planned specifically for this property. He curated beautiful gardens around the estate that include a rose garden, an Italian formal garden, walled garden, tree lined esplanade, tennis lawn, fountains, conservatory, outdoor tea room, and pools. This undertaking is beyond impressive and the manmade forest that surrounds the estate, is remarkable!
100 years after the completion of the mansion, the Estate is now home to a winery, farm lands, Antler Hill Village, Cottages, an Inn, Hotel, shops and dining. Photography is not allowed in the mansion itself, but you are able to photograph the grounds. Ticket prices for visiting the Biltmore Estate varies, depending on what time of year you would like to visit. It can range anywhere from $50-$75. I think that it is worth every single penny, because The Biltmore Estate is the largest, privately owned home in the United States. So the cost of the ticket goes not only towards the upkeep of home and grounds, but to the people who work there. There is so much to see and do at the Estate, you could potentially spend a good 8 hours there. My sister and I are already planning our next trip to North Carolina and we would like to go around Christmastime, so see the mansion decorated for the holiday.
Here are some pictures of the mansion and grounds. Hope you Enjoy!