A Christmas Getaway for the Whole Family
All Things Biltmore • 11/07/16
Written By Amy Dangelico
It’s no secret that Christmas at Biltmore is one of the Southeast’s most storied holiday destinations. Families come from far and wide to experience seasonal festivities on the estate, inspired by century-long traditions.
But how exactly does one plan a getaway that will fill every member of the family—from the grandparents to the youngest child—with Christmas joy, without losing that personal sense of Yuletide peace? We’ve got a few suggestions…
Christmas at Biltmore Daytime Celebration Visit
The entire family can enjoy a hearty breakfast at Village Social in Antler Hill Village for the perfect start to a day of exploration. Then head over to Biltmore House & Gardens for a Christmas at Biltmore Daytime Celebration self-guided visit and be dazzled by America’s largest home decorated for the holiday season.
Worried that the youngest may be too antsy during the two-hour stroll? Bring Cedric’s Sniff-and-Seek Treasure Hunt to keep them occupied or make a game of our Christmas décor: count the Christmas trees, find the largest and the smallest among them, or the first family member to spot a kissing ball wins!
Afterwards, everyone can enjoy the Rooftop Tour, though youngsters may need to be carried as no strollers are allowed. But have no fear—it is surely worth it! As the leaves have dropped, this tour offers unparalleled views of the Blue Ridge Mountain vistas that made George Vanderbilt fall in love with the area.
After the visit to Biltmore House, Mom and Grandma can enjoy a light lunch at the Bake Shop before heading to our century-old gardens to enjoy seasonal seminars at A Gardener’s Place. Learn about Wonderful Winter Wreaths, Terrific Tabletop Topiaries, or stay for both demonstrations, offered back-to-back. Afterwards, the ladies can treat themselves to a peaceful stroll through the glass-roofed Conservatory, filled with seasonal poinsettias along with thousands of exotic plants that bring a touch of the tropics to Appalachia.
All the while, Dad and Grandpa can head down to Antler Hill Village with the kids, where they can experience the timeless tradition of visiting with Santa. There’s plenty to do in the area to keep them busy—from the kids getting their energy out at Pisgah Playground or learning about friendly animals at the Farmyard to handicrafts and craft demonstrations at the Barn that will fascinate grown men and children alike. Take a break at any point for lunch at Smokehouse, conveniently located in the Antler Hill Barn.
While Mom and Dad get a kid-free evening, Grandma and Grandpa get a special evening with the grandkids: dinner at the more casual Stable Café and a visit to Toymaker’s shop where the kids can pick out their own old-fashioned toy or game.
Candlelight Christmas Evenings Visit
Let Grandma and Grandpa indulge in gourmet omelets and waffles at the Chef’s Breakfast Buffet at The Dining Room at The Inn for an elegant, serene start to the full day. Meanwhile, Mom and Dad can take the kids to the Taste of the South Buffet at Deerpark Restaurant. Savor farm-to-table breakfast favorites sure to please every palate with live, local music in the background, setting a pleasant tone for the day.
Have the ladies and gents go their separate ways for the afternoon. Grandma, Mom, and the girls can treat themselves to Sugar and Spice Pedicures, a special seasonal offering at The Spa at The Inn. After the pampering, enjoy a light lunch with a breathtaking view of the estate at the Library Lounge at The Inn. The ladies can then head to The Biltmore Legacy for the Fashionable Romance exhibit to view 60 years of Vanderbilt family wedding fashion, including the first-ever display of Jacqueline Kennedy’s wedding veil.
Grandpa, Dad, and the boys can spend this time exploring our 8,000-acre backyard. Get any gear needed for the day’s adventure at Antler Hill Outfitters, then grab a quick bite at The Kitchen in Village Hotel before heading to the Outdoor Activities Center. Choose to spend the day learning the techniques of shooting clay targets with a high-quality shotguns in a Sporting Clays Lesson or learning expedition-style driving and navigating off-road obstacles with a lesson at our Land Rover Experience Driving School.
Regroup with the entire family in the evening for a delicious dinner of pub and robustly-flavored American and global cuisine at Cedric’s Tavern. Named after the Vanderbilts’ beloved Saint Bernard, the restaurant has a statue of the dog with young Cornelia Vanderbilt near its entrance—a photo op everyone will love.
Then head over to Biltmore House for a Candlelight Christmas Evenings self-guided visit, where firelight, candlelight, and thousands of miniature lights reflect countless ornaments adorning Christmas trees, mantels, wreaths, and garlands in America’s largest home.
If the kids get restless or stir-crazy, the Winter Garden offers mesmerizing choir performances featuring traditional carols.
Travelling with the entire family can be tricky—especially during the holiday season—but it doesn’t have to be. With such a vast array of happenings and activities, Christmas at Biltmore is a family getaway that truly offers something for everyone. Join us for an experience that everyone is sure to remember for many Christmases to come.