Thursday, October 2, 2008

Biltmore Estate

That is a really big house.

Oscar, Maggie and I spent most of yesterday touring the Biltmore Estate here in Asheville. It's the largest privately owned home (over 175,000 square feet....that's a lot of dusting!) in the United States and sits on over 75 acres, which include a winery, horse stables and several gardens and streams.

Unfortunately, they don't allow you to take any pictures of the inside of the home. The gal told us this as she was taking our picture inside the house (hoping we'd buy it at the end as a souvenir), which I thought was ironic and kind of ass. She said that camera flashes affect the restorations going on in the house. Then she said "SMILE and say CHEESE!" as she took two flash pictures of us right in the center of the house.


Since the house is owned by the Vanderbilt family, I believe that I need to make it my mission in life to befriend Anderson Cooper (who's mother is Gloria "do these jeans make me look fat" Vanderbilt) and have him take us back one day for a private photo tour. Until then, I'll just show you pictures of the outide...

The architecture is amazing. There are so many little details, like the variety of hand-crafted creatures around the windows.

The window critters all seem to be a bit evil-looking. However, since much of the house design and sconces was based on French architecture of the time (the 1800's), the orginal artists were probably crankier then with all of the head lice and scurvy going around. I doubt I'd be designing Barney sconces if I spent a great deal of time scratching my nether-regions and carving stone.

There was a great balcony area with an amazing view that allowed us to take a quick break and photos with our own cameras in the midst of the house wandering.

I did spy a couple of scary dolls, but couldn't take any photos of them inside the house (Devil!). However, when I stopped inside one of the gift shops, I did see a couple of unusual looking dolls for sale....

So, I stand by my theory that all famous museums have'em and that I will do my best to never have one in my house.

Or car....or neighborhood....or...

You get the picture.


Byron said...

Another one of my favorite places. I hope you got out and about downtown. My wife is from Asheville. (Cougar Pride, whoop-whoop!) We told some friends of ours who live right in the heart of the Castro District about what a funky and artistic place Asheville is, and they ended up buying a house there. It's a veritable oasis of liberal enlightenment in the heart of Appalachia.

Vampire Hours said...

We definitely got out and about downtown. Asheville really is a nice city and very liberal and open for a place right in the middle of the south. Cindy and Gaby love it there and one of their best friends are a couple who moved there from Venice Beach.

It's always nice to find gems like that when you're traveling.