Guests who visit George Vanderbilt’s historic estate are often carried away by the idea of being a guest at Biltmore House. What was it like to stay in luxury in a 250-room chateau with extravagant meals and decadent wine served at every meal? Imagine waking up each morning with the estate’s rustic beauty outside your window and having servants cater to your every need.
It sounds like a fairy tale, but the dream is a reality when guests reserve a stay at The Inn on Biltmore Estate. This boutique hotel allows guests to experience the same level of hospitality, comfort and relaxed elegance the Vanderbilts offered their family and friends when they lived in Biltmore House.
The Continuation of a Dream
The Inn on Biltmore Estate, which opened in 2001, honors the essence of Biltmore House with beautiful furnishings; memorable surroundings; and exquisite rooms that overlook the Blue Ridge Mountains and French Broad Valley. Designed by the architectural firm Thompson, Ventulett, Stainback & Associates, Inc., of Atlanta, Ga., The Inn's development and location was influenced by evidence found in Biltmore’s archives.
“We knew that Vanderbilt considered construction of a hotel on the property from a letter in the archives from estate Superintendent Charles McNamee to Mr. Vanderbilt,” said Ellen Rickman, Biltmore Director of Museum and Guest Services. “In that correspondence, McNamee refers to Vanderbilt’s interest in a hotel, presumably as an extension of the estate. But when we found the letter dated August 9, 1900, we were quite surprised at the specific reference to the inn being ‘. . . located on a hill . . .’”
The Inn on Biltmore Estate is appropriately situated on the hill above Antler Hill Village and Winery, which provides stunning views of the estate and close proximity to the evening offerings at Antler Hill Village. The estate’s history is always close by with the Lobby’s exhibit case featuring important artifacts such as treasured volumes from Vanderbilt’s book collection.
During their stay, guests may enjoy all the estate has to offer. Days are spent admiring Biltmore House’s priceless collections, strolling through acres of formal gardens, sampling award-winning wines, and exploring Antler Hill Village. After a busy day on the estate, the inn’s Library beckons and guests often settle into the chairs, drinks in hand, to admire a breathtaking view of Biltmore House’s west facade.
When guests arrive, Biltmore’s concierge service ensures that every stay is a memorable one.
Frequent requests handled by the concierge staff involve reservations for outdoor activities on the estate. Biltmore’s Outdoor Center offers a variety of options for exploring the estate’s rustic side. Offerings available include biking, horseback and carriage rides, guided Segway tours, and river float trips down the French Broad River. Those looking to pick up new skills while on vacation can reserve a spot in the Land Rover Experience Driving School, Orvis-Endorsed Fly-Fishing School, or Sporting Clays program.
Guests yearning for a more relaxed tempo can lounge and soak in the inn’s unique rimless pool and hot tub. Open seasonally, both boast secluded views of the Blue Ridge Mountains and food and beverage service.
Additional amenities at the inn include a fitness center offering a variety of weight-training and cardio equipment and in-room movies (available at an additional charge). In addition to popular titles, Biltmore’s in-room movie selection includes a complete collection of all the movies filmed on the estate, such as The Last of the Mohicans and Hannibal. The inn also has a number of banquet rooms and meeting rooms.
The inn’s reputation as a luxury destination has resulted in Mobil Travel Guide’s Four-Star rating, Four Diamonds from AAA, and a spot on Conde Nast Traveler’s Gold List for several years running.