He wanted a farm, he created a forest

Having visited several large Estates in the US, I have noticed, they tend to be working farms. This seems most practical, for feeding both the family of the house as well as the staff that must be maintained to run such an Estate. What is interesting about Biltmore is, this seems to be decidedly absent. The Estate is surrounded by miles and miles of forest, decadently green and lush. It’s immediate grounds, an intricately designed garden with many different environs from wild to tamed, are a master gardener’s dream. However, when you step out onto the balconies of Biltmore, you are struck with this most amazing view of an incredible forest.

Asheville North Carolina was already a destination for the well to do when George Vanderbilt and his mother first arrived. It’s reputation as a resort and sanitorium destination was already well established. If one could afford it, the atmosphere was sure to cure all your ails. The New York winters were taking their toll on Mrs. Vanderbilt and George was looking for a place to build his own country home. It was the lure of the medicinal benefits of the sweet mountain air that first brought the Vanderbilts here.

A sleeping porch in North Carolina

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