Best Places to Stay Near Downtown Asheville
Including Biltmore Village, Montford, North Asheville, West Asheville, East Asheville/Tunnel Road, South Asheville
Very Expensive Over $350 double
Expensive $226-$350 double
Moderate $100-$225 double
Inexpensive $50-$99 double
Very Inexpensive Under $50 double
Rates shown do not include sales and accommodations tax, usually a total of 13%, or service charge, if any.
Biltmore Village/Biltmore Estate Area
The Biltmore Village/Biltmore Estate area is a mixed bag of accommodations, rang-ing from a group of chain motels to two upscale hotels to B&Bs. Be aware that with only a few exceptions, most of the lodging options are not directly in Biltmore Village. Given the heavy traffic on Biltmore Avenue/U.S. Highway 25 and nearby streets (though the Village itself is fairly quiet and walkable) you’ll probably still want a car to get to the Village and to Biltmore Estate. On the Biltmore Estate grounds itself is one of the premier hotels in the region, with prices to match.
Baymont Inn & Suites 204 Hendersonville Rd., South Asheville near Biltmore Vil-lage, 828-274-2022 or 800-337-0550, www.baymontinns.com; Motel, Moderate
If you want a moderately priced motel within a few blocks of the Biltmore Estate entrance, and a short walk to the main part of Biltmore Village, this is a good option. The 71-room Baymont, part of the Wyndham chain, is modern, clean and a continental breakfast is included. Note that this motel has a policy of not accepting guests who live within 50 miles of the inn.
Biltmore Village Inn 119 Dodge St., Biltmore Village, 828-274-8709 or 866-274-8779, www.biltmorevillageinn.com; B&B, Expensive to Very Expensive
This B&B is on a low hill above Biltmore Village and the old Biltmore Hospital.
It’s a bit of a hike to some of the restaurants in Biltmore Village and to the Bilt-more Estate entrance, but you’ll likely have a car anyway. The three-story 1892 Queen Anne-style Victorian house, redone in 1973 and in 2007, was originally known as the Samuel Harrison Reed House and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The inn has five spacious, deluxe rooms in the main house, two rooms in the carriage house and a private cottage. All the rooms are luxuriously decorated and all but one have gas or electric fireplaces. Rates, which include gourmet three-course breakfasts, range from around $230 to $375 double.
Cedar Crest Inn 674 Biltmore Ave., South Asheville, 828-252-1389, www.cedarcrestinn.com; B&B, Moderate to Expensive
One of the longest-established B&Bs in the area, Cedar Crest is located a few blocks north of the Biltmore Estate entrance and Biltmore Village, and about a mile south of Downtown. There are 10 rooms in the main house, an 1891 Queen Anne painted pink with some stunning wood paneling in the public space, plus eight rooms and suites in a nearby cottages and a carriage house. Some rooms have gas fireplaces and whirlpool tubs. The grounds of this romantic inn are large, more than 3 acres. Your stay at Cedar Crest includes free wi-fi, tea, coffee and pastries, evening wine reception and a two-course breakfast.
Doubletree by Hilton Hotel Asheville-Biltmore 115 Hendersonville Rd., Biltmore Village, 828-274-1800, http://doubletree3.hilton.com; Hotel, Expensive
Just south of the entrance to the Biltmore Estate is this Hilton property, owned by Biltmore Farms. It’s not one of the newer properties in the Doubletree chain, but it’s well maintained and very convenient to Biltmore Village and to the Biltmore Estate. It’s next door to a new Hampton Inn & Suites, operated by the same company. Generally solid service and good hotel breakfasts (extra charge except for elite Hilton Honors members). Indoor saline pool. A TGIFriday’s restaurant is attached to the hotel.
Grand Bohemian Hotel 11 Boston Way, Biltmore Village, 828-505-2949 or 866-599-6674, www.bohemianhotelasheville.com; Hotel, Expensive to Very Expensive
The Grand Bohemian, which opened in late 2009, is the closest lodging to the Biltmore Estate, other than the two properties on the Estate itself. In fact, the “Tudor-inspired” hotel is directly across the street from the entrance. Note that while the location is convenient to the Estate and to Biltmore Village (and to a McDonald’s across the street, itself designed to blend into Biltmore Village architecture), is it at the heart of a very busy intersection. Most of the rooms and suites -- some are in an annex -- are spacious, with plush bedding and tufted velvet headboards. Vegetarians beware: The hotel’s lobby, with a central four-sided fireplace, and the restaurant, the Red Stag Grill, go for a hunting lodge decor with chandeliers of antlers and stuffed animal heads on the walls. Heavy on the dark crimson, the bar evokes more of a New Orleans bordello ambiance. You book the hotel through Marriott. It is listed as part of the Marriott Autograph group.
Hampton Inn & Suites 117 Hendersonville Rd., Biltmore Village, 828-277-1800, www.secure3hilton.com; Motel, Moderate to Expensive
This recently opened 117-room Hampton Inn & Suites is a great choice if you’re visiting Biltmore Estate, as it’s only a little over a block from the Biltmore entrance. Next to the DoubleTree (both properties were developed by a branch of the Vanderbilt line) lives up to the chain’s high standards for the brand and gets top ratings on social media.
The Inn on Biltmore Estate 1 Antler Hill Rd., Biltmore Estate, 828-225-1600 or 866-336-1245, www.biltmore.com; Hotel, Very Expensive
The Inn on Biltmore Estate enjoys a stunning hilltop setting in a private area of the 8,000-acre grounds. The architectural design echoes (but does not attempt to duplicate) the chateau style of the main Biltmore House.
Rooms are impressively decorated but, except for the suites, are on the small side. Many guests say it’s worth a little extra to get a room on a higher floor with a better view. On a chilly day, it’s pleasant to sit in the lobby and enjoy a drink by the large stone fireplace.
Staff and service are excellent. Surprisingly, although there’s a large outdoor pool open seasonally the hotel has no indoor pool. Packages are available, especially in the off-season and for 12-month passholders that bring the normally Very Expensive rates ($500 or more on in-season weekends) down to $300 or less in the dead of winter. Some rate packages include admission to Biltmore House, spa treatments and some meals.
The inn’s restaurant, available only to hotel guests and to those with paid admission to the Estate, is one of the best in Asheville for dinner. Breakfast is expensive and not particularly exceptional. However, there are several other good dining options on the Estate, and of course you can leave the estate to sample Asheville’s great restaurants. For guests, there is a free shuttle van to take you anywhere you wish to go on the Estate.
North Lodge on Oakland 84 Oakland Rd., South Asheville, 828-252-6433, www.northlodge.com; B&B, Moderate
Originally built in 1904 as a three-story shingle-style cottage, a first floor stone ex-terior and stone porte-cochere were added in the late 1940s. The house, which had dete-riorated over the years, was extensively renovated and expanded by new owners in the 1990s. The property was turned into a B&B in 2008. The inn is located in a quiet resi-dential area off Victoria Drive near the A-B Tech campus a short drive from Mission Hospital, Biltmore Village, Biltmore Estate, River Arts District and Downtown Asheville. The six rooms in North Lodge are moderately priced, around $150 to $175, with some discounts off-season and on weekdays. Rates include a hearty three-course break-fast.
Oakland Cottage B&B 74 Oakland Rd., South Asheville, 828-994-2627 or 866-858-0863, www.vacationinasheville.com; B&B, Moderate
A fairly modest, value-priced B&B in a residential area near the A-B Tech campus and a short drive to Biltmore Estate and most points of interest in Asheville. The Arts & Crafts-style house dates to 1910. There are two suites and four rooms, with prices from around $145 to $195. Pets are accepted in first-floor rooms.
Residence Inn Asheville Biltmore 701 Biltmore Ave., South Asheville, 828-281-3361, www.marriott.com; Motel, Moderate to Expensive
Due to its proximity to Mission Hospital, this extended stay Marriott brand and other lodging properties along Biltmore Avenue north of Biltmore Village get a good deal of business from the families of patients at Mission. It also gets guests wanting to be within a short drive of the Biltmore Estate and of Downtown. Rooms and suites have kitchenettes, and there’s a complimentary breakfast daily, with a free manager’s after-noon reception with snacks and light drinks Monday-Wednesday.
Sweet Biscuit Inn 77 Kenilworth Rd., East Asheville, 828-457-8170, www.sweetbiscuitinn.com; B&B, Moderate to Expensive
This B&B in a 1915 brick Colonial Revival house in the Kenilworth section is about one-half mile from the Biltmore Estate entrance. There are seven lovely bedrooms plus a carriage house. It has been a B&B since 1999, and Claudia and Christian Hickl took over as innkeepers in 2012. Rates are $160 to $240, with the two-story carriage house going for $250 without breakfast (breakfast is an additional $18 per person.) The carriage house accepts pets as long as they aren’t permitted upstairs. There’s a two-day minimum for all rooms on most weekends.
The Residences at Biltmore 700 Biltmore Ave., South Asheville, 828-786-3648, www.residencesatbiltmore.com; Suites Motel, Moderate to Expensive
Don’t confuse this with either the Marriott’s Residence Inn or with the Inn at Biltmore. Instead, it is an all-suites property just off Biltmore Avenue a little north of Biltmore Village. A total of 55 studio, one-, two- and three-bedroom condo-style units are offered. Attractively decorated suites feature kitchens, washers and dryers, stacked stone fireplaces and hardwood floors. Most have whirlpool tubs. There’s an outdoor pool and firepit, and a fitness room.
The Montford area just north of Downtown Asheville is Asheville’s unofficial bed and breakfast district, with about a dozen licenses B&Bs in the area. You can walk to Downtown from anywhere in Montford, although B&Bs at the north end of the district require a hike of six to ten blocks to the edge of Downtown.
Most B&Bs are in late 19th or early 20th century large homes. Nearly all of the B&Bs in this area offer the expected modcons, including air-conditioning, free wi-fi, cable TV (some only in a common room). Many are truly luxurious, with rates to match, but more modest and more affordable B&Bs are also in Montford. Breakfast is included, except where noted. Rates are higher on weekends, with discounts often avail-able on weekdays and from January to March. Rates in most cases are for either one or two persons, and additional persons usually incur an extra charge. As noted, rates listed do not include sales and accommodation tax or service charge, if any (it’s rare).
Free parking is offered at all B&Bs, though in some cases it is on the street. The B&Bs here are gay-friendly, and some are gay-owned, specifically targeting LGBT guests as a significant part of their market.
If you have any mobility issues, keep in mind that most of the B&Bs in Montford and elsewhere in Asheville are in older homes, most of two or three stories with flights of stairs and no elevators. When booking, mention any issues you have and ask for an ac-cessible, first-floor room.
Abbington Green B&B 46 and 48 Cumberland Circle, Montford, 828-251-2454 or 800-251-2454, www.abbingtongreen.com; B&B, Expensive to Very Expensive
Routinely ranked in social media as on of top B&Bs in Asheville and even in the entire U.S., Abbington Green is known for its beautiful, award-winning gardens and English-style main house by architect Richard Sharp Smith, built in 1908 and now on the National Register of Historic Places. The same owners have run this B&B for more than 25 years. Abbington Green has nine rooms and suites in the main house and the carriage house. All have fireplaces, along with flat-screen TVs, wi-fi and individually controlled heat and air-conditioning. The inn also offers spa services. Organic, mostly locally sourced multi-course breakfasts are included in the rates, which range from around $269 to $469. Abbington Green is located a bit farther from Downtown than some of the other B&Bs in Montford, but it’s still walkable to Downtown restaurants and attractions. Parking is available on the grounds. Carriage house units accept pets.
1900 Inn on Montford 296 Montford Ave., Montford, 828-457-8169 or 800-254-9569, www.innonmontford.com; B&B, Expensive to Very Expensive
A 1900 Arts & Crafts-style house designed by Richard Sharp Smith has been turned into a luxury B&B furnished with antiques by owners Ron and Lynn Carlson. There are four rooms and a suite in the main house, and three large suites (all pet-friendly) in a modern cottage out back.
All the suites and rooms have gas fireplaces, flat-screen TVs and deluxe furnishings. The Cloisters mega-suite in the cottage is 1,300 square feet with a two-person whirlpool and two-person shower, 50-inch and 32-inch TVs and kitchenette; it goes for $325 in winter to $625 in October. The Fitzgerald room in the main house has a king bed, bathroom with two-person tub, walk-in shower and fiber optic lighting on the floor and ceiling, a 47-inch TV, and brick fireplace. Overall, rates ranges from $145 to $625 de-pending on the season and the room. A three-course breakfast is served.
A Bed of Roses B&B 145 Cumberland Ave., Montford, 828-258-8700 www.abedofroses.com; B&B, Moderate to Expensive
This 1897 Queene Anne Victorian gem is located less than six blocks from down-town. The B&B has four lovingly decorated rooms plus one suite, from around $140 to $229 double, plus tax The owners serve a two-course included gourmet breakfast, with some items from the inn’s garden.
At Cumberland Falls B&B Inn 254 Cumberland Ave., Montford, 828-212-4327, www.cumberlandfalls.com; B&B, Moderate to Expensive
Nearly everyone who stays at this B&B loves it. They like the location, within walking distance of Downtown; they like the gourmet breakfasts; they like the gardens with a water feature; they like the new owners, Angels and David; and, most of all, they like the Victorian house with six comfy rooms. Rooms have whirlpool tubs and some have a fireplace or wood stove. Rates are mostly Moderate, from $135 to $269, with corporate and some weekday discounts.
Applewood Manor Inn B&B 62 Cumberland Circle, Montford, 828-254-2244, www.applewoodmanor.com; B&B, Moderate to Expensive
Applewood is one of Asheville’s most popular B&Bs. The inn is a wood-shingled New England-style Colonial Revival house, completed in 1912, on about an acre and a half. The accommodations – four rooms and a suite in the main house, plus a separate cottage -- are named after varieties of apples, Winesap, Macintosh, York Imperial, etc. Amenities include individually controlled heating and air-conditioning, a social hour with complimentary drinks, a turndown service with chocolates and wi-fi throughout. It’s about a 25 to 30 minute walk to Downtown. Rates range from around $150 to $318 depending upon the suite and the time of year.
Asheville Seasons B&B 43 Watauga St., Montford, 828-263-9494, www.ashevilleseasons.com; B&B, Moderate
Although in the Montford Historic District, this B&B is something of a hike – about a mile --to Downtown Asheville. Most of the five rooms in this three-story early 20th century house have gas fireplaces, and the inn has central air and heat.
Black Walnut B&B Inn 288 Montford Ave., Montford, 828-268-3688, www.blackwalnut.com; B&B, Expensive to Very Expensive
Originally built in 1899 and designed by Richard Sharp Smith in the English ver-nacular style for which he was known, with half-timbered pebbledash exterior. It also has Queen Anne elements. Beautifully restored, the Black Walnut is now a luxury B&B ideally located on three-quarter-acre grounds and gardens on the main street through Montford, within a few blocks of Downtown.
There are six rooms in the main house and two in the carriage house, usually with a two-night minimum. Expect delicious pastries and breads in the included breakfast. Hors d'oeuvres and tea served each afternoon.
Carolina B&B 177 Cumberland Ave., Montford, 828-248-0632, www.carolinabb.com; B&B, Moderate to Expensive
Completed in 1902, this is an unpretentious but pleasant pebbledash stucco house by Richard Sharp Smith, done in his English vernacular style, with an Arts and Crafts front porch. Rooms have heart pine floors. There are six rooms and one cottage, with rates from $180 to $230.
Lion and Rose B&B 276 Montford Ave., Montford, 828-639-8003, www.lion-rose.com; B&B, Moderate to Expensive
Adjacent to the Black Walnut B&B just a few blocks from Downtown is this ele-gant rose-colored B&B, beautifully restored and maintained and with extensive land-scaping. Completed in 1896, the house combines Colonial Revival, Neoclassical and Queen Anne elements. A special detail is the large stained glass Palladian window at the top of the oak stairs. Tommy French, one of the characters in Thomas Wolfe’s novel, Look Homeward, Angel, was said to live in this house. Rates in the four rooms on the second floor and one third-floor suite for weekend nights in-season are $159 to $220.
Pinecrest B&B 249 Cumberland Ave., Montford, 828-457-7265, www.pinecrestbb.com; B&B, Moderate to Expensive
Pinecrest Bed and Breakfast is in a 1905 Tudor Revival home, with a 1913 addition designed by Richard Sharp Smith. It is with walking distance of Downtown. It is anoth-er popular Montford lodging spot that gets high ratings on TripAdvisor and other crowd-sourcing hospitality sites. Diane and Dan Rogers are the third owners since Pine-crest became a B&B in 1999. They serve a delicious full breakfast. Rates are around $175 to $230 a night. Pinecrest offers a 10% discount to couples or families visiting UNC-A.
1899 Wright Inn and Carriage House 235 Pearson Dr., Montford, 828-251-0789, www.wrightinn.com; B&B, Moderate to Very Expensive
The Wright Inn is one of Asheville’s largest B&Bs, with 10 rooms plus a three-bedroom cottage. Originally built for local businessperson Osella B. Wright and wife Leva D. Wright, the Queen Anne-style house was from a design by George Franklin Barber, a Knoxville architect who marketed his home plans across the United States by mail order. Eventually Barber sold more than 20,000 house plans, and homes from his designs were built in all states in the U.S. and in several other countries. The Wright house was renovated in the 1980s for use as a B&B and has been operated by several different owners since then. Rates are $160 to $235 for rooms and $375 for the carriage house and may be higher on holidays and autumn weekends.
1889 White Gate Inn 173 E. Chestnut St., North Asheville, 828-253-2553, www.whitegate.net; B&B, Moderate to Very Expensive
Romantic inn with lovely grounds and gardens, within walking distance of Down-town, the White Gate Inn has eight suites, two rooms and one cottage, named for American and English writers. Rates are from $160 to $420, plus tax, depending on the room and date, with the highest rates on weekends and in October. Several of the suites have fireplaces and whirlpool baths, and two have kitchens. A three-course breakfast with custom-blended coffee is included.
Albemarle Inn 86 Edgemont Rd., North Asheville, 828-255-0027 or 800-621-7435, www.albemarleinn.com; B&B, Moderate to Very Expensive
This upscale B&B in a stunning 1909 Neoclassical Revival mansion in the lovely North Asheville residential Grove Park neighborhood was for a short time home to Hungarian composer Béla Bartók. He lived here in the early 1940s, working on his "Asheville Concerto," the Third Concerto for Piano.
You can stay in his room, now called Bartók’s Retreat, on the third floor though some of the other 10 suites and rooms are more deluxe.
Some rooms have working fireplaces and canopied beds. Gourmet breakfasts are included. The inn is just a bit too far from Downtown for an easy stroll, but if you en-joy a little exercise it’s certainly walkable. Originally the home of Dr. Carl Von Reynolds, a noted Asheville physician who helped found the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Public Health, the home was later a school for girls. It was turned into a B&B in the 1990s; the current innkeepers are Fabrizio and Rosemary Chiariello.
Rates are $175 to $400 double, plus tax, with the highest rates on weekends in Oc-tober and around Christmas.
Beaufort House Inn 61 N Liberty St., North Asheville, 828-372-4714, www.beauforthouse.com; B&B, Expensive
This B&B in the Chestnut Hill Historic District about one-half mile from Down-town is one of Asheville’s most popular inns. The rambling Queen Anne-style Victorian house, on the National Register of Historic Places, was built in 1894 for North Carolina Attorney General and Asheville Mayor Theodore Davidson. For a short time in the 1940s it was the home of actor and National Rifle Association enthusiast Charlton Heston. The architect was Allen L. Melton, who also designed the Drhumor Building Downtown. There are eight rooms in the main house and attached terrace, plus three cottages in the carriage house. Beaufort, by the way, is pronounced BO-fort, as with the North Carolina coastal town, not pronounced like the South Carolina town, BEW-fort. Rates are around $159 to $269 double, plus tax.
Chestnut Street Inn 176 E. Chestnut, North Asheville, 828-457-07845, www.chestnutstreeinn.com; B&B, Moderate to Expensive
This B&B in a 1905 Colonial Revival house has eight deluxe rooms. It has the orig-inal staircase with a "courting bench," high ceilings and large porches. Rates are from $210 to $340plus tax (lower rates mid-week, higher rates at peak times such as Octo-ber). It’s a fairly short walk to Downtown.
Crooked Oak Mountain Inn 217 Patton Mountain Rd., North Asheville, 828-252-9219 or 877-252-9219, www.crookedoakmountaininn.com; B&B, Moderate
This six-room B&B in a rustic octagonal house on three acres is on a mountainside above the Grove Park Inn, about 3 miles from Downtown. There’s a stone fireplace in the common room and wrap-around decks.
Omni Grove Park Inn 290 Macon Ave., North Asheville, 828-252-2711 or 800-438-5800, www.groveparkinn.com; Resort Hotel, Expensive to Very Expensive
The grande dame of Asheville hotels celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2013. Its first century saw many high points and some low ones, as the original six-story, 150-room hotel, inspired by the New Canyon Lodge in Yellowstone National Park and by other national park hotels in the West, evolved into the present-day 551-room resort and convention hotel with its own Donald Ross-designed golf course, award-winning spa and full resort and meeting facilities. Ten U.S. presidents (Taft, Wilson, Coolidge, Hoover, Roosevelt, Eisenhower, Nixon, Bush, Clinton and Obama) have stayed at the inn, along with many famous movie stars, celebrities and writers.
The Grove Park was the idea of Edwin Wiley Grove, a Tennessee patent medicine multi-millionaire who also built Asheville’s Grove Arcade and the second Battery Park Hotel. Grove and his son-in-law, Fred Seely, a developer, designed the inn, with some consultation with New York architect Henry Ives Cobb, but it is fair to say that the massive hotel was built without the benefit of an on-site architect.
The inn was constructed of huge granite boulders, some weighing as much as five tons, mined nearby on Sunset Mountain. It also used local chestnut, oak, pine and other woods for the rooms and the nearly 10,000 square foot lobby, which is bookended by two huge stone fireplaces, all crowned by a striking red tile roof. Four hundred men worked 10-hour shifts six days a week, using mules and hand tools, and completed the hotel in just a year.
The Grove Park has gone through a series of owners since E. W. Grove’s day. The longest-tenured owner was Charles Sammon, an insurance magnate, who bought the inn in 1955 and whose company owned it until 2012. Sammons added the 202-room Sammons Wing in 1984 and the 166-room Vanderbilt Wing in 1988.
The additions, along with the purchase of the Asheville Country Club golf course in 1976 and the opening of a large spa in 2001, has made the resort much more viable as a business, but the new wings are architecturally inferior to the original section, cheap imitations of the classic original construction.
In 2012, the Grove Park Inn was sold by the Sammons company to KSL Capital Partners, a private equity firm in Denver and then quickly re-sold by KSL to Omni Ho-tels. Omni operates a number of resorts including Omni Amelia Island Plantation Re-sort, Omni Cancun and Omni Hilton Head.
The inn offers grand views of Downtown Asheville and the golf course from the Sunset Terrace off the main lobby.
The furnishings in the lobby and in the rooms of the original section are by Roycrofters, the famous Arts and Crafts collective in East Aurora, N.Y., near Buffalo. The lobby has paddle arm sofas and chairs of wormy chestnut. The Grove Park Inn has the largest collection of Arts and Crafts furniture in the world.
The hotel has several restaurants, including the long-established Sunset Terrace with its wonderful views, Blue Ridge, with a buffet including a Sunday brunch, Edison featuring Southern comfort food, and Vue 1913, a brasserie with Art Deco decor.
If you can overlook the occasional physical, staff, food and service shortcomings that come with being a large meeting and convention property, the inn remains a stunning statement of the glory of the Golden Age of hospitality. The inn’s location and atmosphere are unmatched, and the grounds and resort facilities are superb. To stay here, when things go right, can be a magical experience. Just to have a cocktail by the fire in the lobby on a glorious autumn evening is something you will never forget.
Princess Anne Hotel 301 E. Chestnut, North Asheville, 828-258-0986 or 866-258-0986, www.princessannehotel.com; Inn, Moderate to Expensive
Completed in 1924, the Princess Anne opened as a hotel for the families of tuber-culosis patients but went through several owners and uses. Among the owners were the father of songwriter Johnny Mercer and Maharishi Ayurveda University, for a time spiritual advisors to the Beatles. The three-story, flat iron-shaped Shingle-style building was renovated in 2003-2005 by local preservationist Howard Stafford who returned it to its original use. It has 16 rooms and suites. The location is a bit of a walk to the heart of Downtown, but the little hotel gets rave reviews from guests. It is often fully booked, so make reservations early.
Reynolds Mansion 100 Reynolds Heights, North Asheville, 828-258-1111 or 888-611-1156, www.thereynoldsmansion.com; B&B, Expensive
Located in an historic Colonial Revival brick mansion built in 1847, this B&B on 4 acres on Reynolds Mountain scores among the top B&Bs in the U.S. on TripAdvisor and often is ranked number one in Asheville. The location is a bit unexpected, in a mixed-used residential and retail development, Reynolds Village, about 4 miles north of the heart of Downtown. The mansion has been a B&B since 1970. The current Reynolds Mansion owners, Billy Sanders and Michael Griffith, purchased it in 2009 and after restoration re-opened it in 2010. They must be doing a lot of things right. Unusual for a B&B, there’s a swimming pool, open Memorial Day to Labor Day. There are 12 fireplaces in the inn, and reportedly 3,000 square feet of porches. The mansion, which was built by Daniel Reynolds and 15 slaves over a period of three and a half years, was constructed of bricks made from clay mined from the bottom of nearby Beaver Lake.
In the 20th century it was the home of the colorful and controversial Senator Robert “Bob” Rice Reynolds, who served North Carolina in the U.S. Senate from 1932 to 1945. Some historians say that Reynolds, even during World War II, was a Nazi and Fascist apologist. President Franklin Roosevelt attempted to get the isolationist Reyn-olds defeated, but he failed. Reynolds was married five times. His fifth wife, Evalyn Washington McLean, was a daughter of Washington Post publisher Edward Beale McLean, the last private owner of the Hope Diamond. Bob Reynolds married Evalyn in 1941 when he was 57 and she was 19. Evalyn died of a sleeping pill overdose age five years later. Some attribute the death to the curse of the Hope Diamond. The national Democratic Party finally succeeded in getting Reynolds out of the Senate, and he lived in Asheville until his death in 1963, practicing law.
Sourwood Inn 810 Elk Mountain Scenic Hwy., North Asheville, 828-255-0690, www.sourwoodinn.com; Inn, Moderate
The Sourwood Inn, built in the 1990s, is constructed of stone and cedar. It sits on about 100 acres off Elk Mountain Scenic Highway near the Blue Ridge Parkway in North Asheville. The twelve rooms in the main house are casually chic, each with wood-burning fireplace and a bathtub with views of the woods. There’s also a cabin.
Initially, the inn didn’t have air-conditioning, with the owners claiming that at 3,200 feet it was cool enough even in July. Not all guests bought that, given the warming climate, so finally the inn added A/C, a good move.
Breakfast and afternoon refreshments are included in the reasonable rates, and the inn serves dinner (advance reservations required) Thursday through Sunday. It’s BYOB, as alcohol isn’t sold at the inn. Sourwood, by the way, is a small native tree that blooms in July, and honeybees make a delicious, very light-colored honey from the nectar.
East Asheville/Tunnel Road
The Tunnel Road area east of Downtown is home to the Asheville Mall, by far the largest mall in the region, and most fast food and casual chain restaurants known to humankind. Save for the heavy traffic, often bumper-to-bumper, staying here offers fairly convenient access to Downtown and to the Biltmore Village area.
Country Inn & Suites 199 Tunnel Rd., East Asheville, 828-254-4311 or 800-830-5222, www.countryinn.com; Motel, Moderate
This 77-unit motel is about typical of the chain, with free Wi-Fi, included continental breakfast and coin laundry, although it also has a heated indoor pool.
Courtyard by Marriott 1 Buckstone Place, East Asheville, 828-281-0041 or 800-321-2211, www.marriott.com; Motel, Moderate to Expensive
A mid-priced Marriott brand designed for business travelers and families, this Courtyard near the Asheville Mall and many casual chain restaurants has a heated indoor pool. There’s a buffet-style breakfast, (extra charge), but no dinner is served. Free Wi-Fi.
Hampton Inn Tunnel Road 204 Tunnel Rd., East Asheville, 828-255-922 or 800-426-7866, www.hampton.com; Motel, Moderate
This Hampton Inn is a little larger than average, with five floors and 119 rooms. As usual, you get complimentary breakfast and free Wi-Fi and local calls. Recently renovated. Heated indoor pool. It’s near busy Tunnel Road and the Asheville Mall, but it sits a bit away from the heavy traffic.
Holiday Inn & Suites 42 Tunnel Rd., East Asheville, 828-225-5550 or 800-439-4745,
www.holidayinn.com; Motel, Moderate
This six-story, 111-unit motel with heated indoor pool is one of the best Holiday Inn chain properties in the Asheville area. Note, however, that the company lists this as being in Downtown Asheville, which it is not.
Homewood Suites by Hilton 88 Tunnel Rd., East Asheville, 828-252-5400 or 800-225-4664, www.homewoodsuites.com; Motel, Moderate to Expensive
An extended stay motel, this Homewood Suites has 94 suites with kitchenettes on six floors. Breakfast and free Wi-Fi included in the moderate rates (expensive on certain fall or event weekends). There’s a manager’s reception weekdays with free drinks and virtually a complete dinner.
West Asheville/Asheville West Area
There are two main conglomerations of accommodations, mostly chain motels, in the West Asheville and Asheville West areas. One area is off Exit 33 of I-26 at Asheville Outlets mall. The general location offers easy access to Asheville via I-26 and also I-240 and I-40, along with shopping bargains at the outlet mall, and there are several decent, inexpensive restaurants nearby, including Papas and Beer (Mexican), Moose Café (country), Stone Ridge Tavern (burgers and casual food) and Harbor Inn (seafood, no alcohol). Among the motels here are Country Inn & Suites, Hampton Inn & Suites (new in 2019), Holiday Inn Express, Fairfield Inn, Rodeway Inn & Suites and Comfort Suites.
The other is off Exit 44 of I-40 at U.S. Highway 19-23/Smoky Park Highway. This is a major interstate exit and has plenty of gas stations, fast food places such as Wendy’s, McDonalds, Burger King and Arby’s, plus casual chain restaurants including IHOP, Applebee’s, FATZ and Cracker Barrel. Motels here include Holiday Inn, Country Inn & Suites, Red Roof Inn, Ramada Inn and others. It offers good access to Asheville via I-40 and I-240.
Country Inn & Suites Asheville West 1914 Old Haywood Rd., West Asheville, 828- 665-9556 or 800-830-5222, www.countryinns.com; Motel, Moderate
Newer, well-run Country Inn & Suites at the Exit 44 interchange of I-40 near Smoky Park Highway. Don’t confuse this with the Biltmore Square location of the same chain. It’s near a plethora of fast food and casual chain restaurants.
Country Inn & Suites at Asheville Outlets 845 Brevard Rd., West Asheville, 828-670-9000 or 800-830-5222, www.countryinns.com; Motel, Moderate
Slightly above-average Country Inn & Suites with reasonable prices. It is directly across from the Asheville Outlets. Outdoor pool, continental breakfast included.
Crowne Plaza Resort One Resort Drive, West Asheville, 828-254-3211 or 800-733-321l, www.ashevillecp.com; Hotel, Moderate to Expensive
This resort hotel opened as a Hilton in the 1960s and has gone through a number of changes since. On about 125 acres it has a 9-hole golf course, 20 tennis courts (10 indoor), three pools, a large fitness center, and, believe it or not, a zipline compound.
The location is a little odd, just on the west side of the Capt. Jeff Bowen Bridge, formerly the Smoky Park Bridge, behind Asheville’s first shopping center, Westgate. The Crowne Plaza makes a valiant attempt to provide first-class accommodations and resort services, and occasionally succeeds.
Hampton Inn & Suites Biltmore Area 835 Brevard Rd., West Asheville, 828-575-9593, www.hamptoninn3.hilton.com; Motel, Moderate to Expensive
Opened in 2019, this new Hampton replaces an existing motel of the same brand a few hundred yards away. Although the motel is very attractive, the name is slightly mis-leading because it is about a 10-minute drive from Biltmore and the entrance to the Biltmore Estate. However, it is convenient to I-26, I-40, I-240 and the Blue Ridge Parkway, and it is directly across the road from Asheville Outlets mall and is next door to an Ingles gro-cery.
Holiday Inn Biltmore West 435 Smoky Park Hwy. at Exit 44 of I-40 (Asheville West), 828-665-2161 or 888-465-4329, www.ihg.com; Motel, Moderate
Formerly a Ramada Inn, this property right at Exit 44 of I-40 was substantially up-graded a few years ago when it was reflagged as a Holiday Inn. The swimming pool is in the lobby, a remnant of the old Ramada design. The name, apparently designed to take advantage of the Biltmore Estate draw, is confusing because it’s at least a 10-minute drive via I-40 to the Biltmore Estate entrance, longer in traffic. The motel is near plenty of fast food spots and casual chain restaurants.
Holiday Inn Express 1 Wedgefield Dr. off Brevard Rd. at I-26 (Asheville West), 828-665-6519 or 888-465-4329, www.ihg.com; Motel, Moderate
About average Holiday Inn Express, with easy access to Asheville via I-26, I-240 and I-40. Reasonable rates for Asheville.
This area has mostly chain motels serving Asheville Regional Airport overnighters and passers-through on Interstate 26, along with some guests doing business with manu-facturing plants and other businesses in the fast-growing South Asheville area. In addi-tion to the airport area motels listed below (the best of the bunch), there also are units of the Clarion Inn, Econo-Lodge, Wingate by Wyndam, Super 8, Fairfield Inn & Suites, Mountain Inn & Suites and Comfort Inn near the airport. Note that the Hilton is not at the airport but at Biltmore Park, about 5 miles north of the airport via I-26.
Courtyard by Marriott 360 Rockwood Rd., Arden (South Asheville), 828-684-5000, www.marriott.com; Motel, Moderate to Expensive
This recently opened Courtyard gets top reviews from guests. It is a little more ex-pensive than most other motels near the airport but is probably worth it due to the qual-ity of the rooms and the available of a good breakfast (free or discounted for elite Mar-riott/Starwood guests) plus dinner and cocktails. It has an indoor heated pool and a fitness room.
Hampton Inn & Suites 18 Rockwood Rd., Fletcher (South Asheville), 828-687-0806, 800-426-7866, www.hampton.com; Motel, Moderate
Convenient to the Asheville Regional Airport and WNC Ag Center, this 96-unit Hampton Inn & Suites offers the usual Hampton quality, but prices are a little above what you’d expect. Included breakfast and free wi-fi.
Holiday Inn & Suites 9 Brian Blvd., Arden (South Asheville), 888-465-43329; www.ihg.com; Motel, Expensive to Moderate
Offers a good value in an above-average motel near the airport.
Hilton Asheville Biltmore Park 43 Town Square Blvd., Biltmore Park Town Square, Off I-26, South Asheville, 828-209-2700 or 800-445-8667, www.hilton.com; Hotel, Expensive
Located in the Biltmore Park multi-use planned community just off I-26 in South Asheville, the Hilton offers the expected Hilton amenities, including spa, restaurant and bar. Within walking distance are a number of mostly chain restaurants, such as P.F. Chang’s, a large multiplex cinema and a number of boutiques, galleries and stores, in-cluding an R.E.I. and a Barnes & Noble. The Hilton has a decent restaurant, Roux.
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