The Smallest Yuletide Details Inside the Largest Room

Written By LeeAnn Donnelly

Posted 12/04/20

Updated 12/04/20

Holiday Traditions

While standing in the Banquet Hall during the Christmas season, it’s easy to be mesmerized by the magnificent towering Christmas tree that anchors the southern end of the room. The tree is the heartbeat of Biltmore House each holiday season, and for good reason. It stands 35 feet above ground, has long, flowy branches, and is full of ornaments so large they might be mistaken for shiny basketballs.

A smaller display sits across the room, though it is as enchanting, especially since some of this tremendous room’s tiniest yuletide details reside there. Underneath the two ornament-packed trees gracing either side of the three-bay fireplace you’ll find classic toys that reflect this year’s design theme, “An 1895 Christmas.”

Joslyn Kelly, a Biltmore floral designer who decorated the Banquet Hall this year, says she placed them there for a specific reason. “I wanted to focus on classic toys that span the test of time, toys that all children can and probably have enjoyed in some capacity.”

Joslyn’s list of toys included jack-in-the-boxes, dolls, tea sets, tops, yo-yos, and even a pair of ballerina slippers. “I feel like these tiny toys have brought many people joy throughout the years from George Vanderbilt’s time until now,” says Joslyn, “and that joy is what I wanted to bring to the Banquet Hall this year.”

Enjoy these details from Joslyn’s Banquet Hall design now, and on your Biltmore visit!

This adorable doll on her velvet couch is one of the exquisite design details in the Banquet Hall.
This jack-in-the-box, an ever-classic toy, is ready to amuse his Biltmore guests.
Boys and girls throughout history have found a yo-yo or two under the tree on Christmas morning.
This tiny tea service looks right at home in Biltmore House.
Ballet slippers ready for dance and play.

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