With two teens and a lovable labrador retriever in tow, we set out on a road trip to Asheville, N.C. Our plan: To make the elegant Grand Bohemian Hotel Asheville our home base while exploring the Asheville area and enjoying the nature and beauty of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
Since reading a Forbes article about the splendid Grand Bohemian Hotel Asheville a year ago, I had been dreaming of a visit to this eclectic city bustling with endless opportunities for indoor and outdoor family fun. In addition to the famed Biltmore Estate, Asheville is known for its vibrant arts and music scene, fantastic and prolific food and craft beer options, along with endless opportunities for indoor and outdoor, pet-friendly fun.
The author and her family received a discounted stay in exchange for this review.
All opinions are her own.
When we arrived at the Grand Bohemian Hotel Asheville, a four-story Tudor-inspired boutique hotel modeled after a rustic 19th-century hunting lodge, we were immediately blown away by the lobby. Plush velvet couches, oversized leather armchairs, and rustic hunting-inspired decor surround a dramatic four-sided stone fireplace, creating a warm and welcoming ambiance. At check-in, we were offered a friendly welcome by the staff, including bottles of water for the kids, champagne for mom and dad, and even dog treats for our pooch, Wonder!
Just off the lobby, we meandered through a cozy art gallery featuring a host of local and up-and-coming artists. My daughter’s favorite: A whimsical, colorful necklace and bracelet set. On the way to our room, we marveled at the original paintings, sculptures, and artwork lining the halls, extending the hunting lodge decor of the lobby throughout the entire hotel. We learned that the hotel’s art collection comprises works of both local and internationally renowned artists.
Explore Asheville is a great site to find things to do in Asheville, with an incredibly easy-to-use interface and even a nifty “trip planner” tool to virtually build an itinerary.
At the end of the third-floor hallway, we entered our beautifully spacious room — outfitted with two queen beds with tufted headboards and crisp white bedding. The stately bathroom included a stone shower with a luxurious rainwater shower head as well as an oversized soaking tub.
The kids’ favorite part of the room? The two half-doors above the bathroom tub swung open to the sleeping area — allowing tub bathers to chat with bed sleepers and/or watch TV from the bath! (I should have snapped a photo … there’s always next time!)
Wonder was equally surprised and delighted by the dog bed, water bowl, and treats that the Grand Bohemian Hotel Asheville staff had thoughtfully placed in a corner of the room for her in anticipation of her arrival!
After a restful night’s sleep, we decided to plan our first day in Asheville over a breakfast of Belgian waffles and buttermilk pancakes at the Red Stag Grill. We appreciated the casual atmosphere, attentive waitstaff, and varied menu that offers a Carolina twist on European comfort food. We enjoyed it so much we returned for lunch the following day. The kids’ favorites: The delectable truffle fries accompanying their Chef’s Burger and Smoked Turkey Sandwich. Dad gave a thumbs up to the Red Stag Reuben and mom loved the Chicken Chophouse Salad with dates, almonds, and pickled red onions.
During our five-day vacation, we could not have asked for a more conveniently located home base. The Grand Bohemian Asheville is just a stone’s throw away (literally across the street!) from the Biltmore Estate and endless shopping and dining options in the cozy, walkable Biltmore Village. The city of Asheville and the River Arts District (a warehouse-turned-arts-destination) is just a 5- to 10-minute drive. And thanks to the Blue Ridge Mountains, the Asheville area’s options for outdoor activities are endless: Hiking, zip-lining, biking, rafting, rappelling, fishing… a nature enthusiast’s dream!
After a four-night stay, we had checked off only a few of the many boxes on our “Must-Do-in-Asheville” list. But that’s okay: Now we have a reason to return to this lively city — and the exquisite Grand Bohemian Asheville —in the near future!