Just 25 miles from our Lake Lure vacation rental cabins is the resort city of Asheville, North Carolina. Home to the Biltmore Estate
, Asheville was named a must-see destination in 2007 by Frommer's and boasts a thriving arts community, diverse outdoor adventures, a vibrant and inviting downtown, numerous historic and architectural attractions, and unique shopping options.
Asheville is that type of unique, special place that lingers sweetly in your mind and memories for years to come. The city's rich architectural legacy with its mix of Art Deco, Beaux Arts and Neoclassical styles is the perfect retro-urban backdrop to the edgy energy that emanates from the locally owned-shops and art galleries, distinctive restaurants and exciting entertainment venues. Known as an art colony, a healing resort and a home to notable luminaries, statesmen and bohemians, Asheville is one of the most welcoming, vibrant cities in America.
A bastion of cutting-edge art and technology in the Blue Ridge, the city also prides itself on its fascinating Appalachian past and celebrates this culture with annual events such as Shindig on the Green. Asheville’s diverse music scene ranges from bluegrass native to the area to major national acts, opera, ballet, country music and experimental jazz.
Downtown Asheville is a rare place. Artists and street musicians converge with tourists and locals for a vibrancy rarely found in a city of this size. There is always something happening downtown. People sip cups of Joe at one of several locally-owned coffee shops, listen to live music at a local club. They go on art walks, winding their way through downtown's 30-plus galleries. Downtown Asheville shops and galleries feature a unique mix of locally-owned establishments. Downtown art galleries offer specialized items such as custom jewelry, quilts, furniture and one-of-a-kind gifts. The city is pedestrian friendly, with wrought-iron benches throughout downtown, and many eateries have open-air dining sections that allow visitor to enjoy the city’s mild weather. In downtown Asheville, it is a pleasure - not a stress - to go shopping.
Asheville skipped the urban renewal process that stripped the character from many downtowns. Today, its rich architectural legacy with its mix of Art Deco, Beaux Arts and Neoclassical styles is the perfect backdrop to the city’s edgy energy. The city earned an international reputation as a premier health resort in the 1890s. By the 1920s, Asheville was a destination for the rich and famous, including F. Scott Fitzgerald, Thomas Edison and Henry Ford.
Today's visitors find a city steeped in history. Step back in time and experience Gilded Age elegance at America’s largest home, George Vanderbilt’s 250-room Biltmore House. Relive the Victorian era at the circa 1840 Smith-McDowell House-Museum, Asheville's oldest home. Explore the Thomas Wolfe Memorial, the acclaimed author's boyhood home and the inspiration for his novel "Look Homeward, Angel."