Showing posts with label BALSAM MTN INN TRIP 2012. Show all posts
Showing posts with label BALSAM MTN INN TRIP 2012. Show all posts

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Gorgeous Tulips and Azaleas

NO---this is not our home  (wish it was--ha)!!!!  These pictures were taken on April 3, 2012 when we were on the way to Balsam Mountain Inn.  This is the BILTMORE HOUSE and GARDENS,  one of our favorite places.  We just had to stop by to see what was blooming now at Biltmore....

WELL--even though the rain was coming,  we still were able to get some great pictures of the beautiful Tulips and Azaleas in bloom there now.   Hope you enjoy our pictures, but be sure to click on them for larger views.  The picture above was of one side of the Walled Garden area... I loved the way they arranged all of the tulips and other blooming flowers.  (I used my Photoshop Elements program to erase all of the people around!!!!)

Look at all of these AZALEAS...  We took a short walk in order to get some pictures of the Azaleas... This was a perfect time to see them!!!!

This is neither an Azalea nor a Tulip... BUT--since I had never seen one like this before,  I just had to share it.  Its name is a DWARF  FOTHERGILLA.    Isn't it grogeous?

I took this picture of George standing in front of some beautiful lavender-colored AZALEAS...  I'm not sure that his shirt blends in with that color ---but it will blend in with our last picture today!!!

This is the Arbor --which is the main walkway between the two big areas of flowers in the Walled Garden... Aren't the Tulips pretty along this area?

You can tell how much I loved the extra little walk to see the Azaleas at Biltmore. SO pretty!!

These next two pictures are my favorites from this visit to Biltmore...The first one was taken by me from the Arbor facing those gorgeous white dogwoods at the top of the picture.... While I was taking more pictures in the Walled Garden,  George hiked up to where those dogwoods are and took a fabulous picture of the Walled Garden from above.   (Again,   I took out all of the people and the cars from these pictures.)

Here is the opposite look from the picture I just took.  George is up by the dogwoods looking down into the Walled Garden...  Isn't this just AWESOME????  I'm so glad that he went up there to get a 'total' view.....  (Storms were coming.  Can you see the dark sky above???  We did make it back to the car BARELY... ha)

Finally,   here is a picture we took (with the tripod) of us in front of the Tulips at the Walled Garden at Biltmore... NOW--our shirts blend in !!!!!! (These shirts are ones we bought a few years ago when we visited Cloudland Canyon State Park in GA.)

Biltmore is amazing --especially if you are 'flower lovers' like we are... There's something different during every season... It's just one of our favorite places to visit...

Have a beautiful day!!!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Balsam Mountain Inn, Balsam, North Carolina

George and I took a wonderful trip to the mountains of North Carolina from April 3-5, 2012.  We stayed in a fabulous mountain inn,  named the Balsam Mountain Inn,  in Balsam, North Carolina (which is not far from Waynesville).

The inn is among the oldest in the North Carolina mountains...  Construction began in 1905 and was completed in 1908.   It was modeled after the Saratoga Inn in New York.  It features neo-classical architecture.   The three-story building has 46,000+ square feet and 225 windows.    A hallmark is the 100-foot,  two-tier porch offering splendid views of the Balsams.  The inn was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in July, 1982.  The inn was renovated beginning in October of 1990. 

The 10-foot wide hallways,  designed to accommodate huge steamer trunks of guests arriving by rail (nearby), are now filled with art and crafts of more than 75 local artists.  Victorian trim accents the interior of the inn.

The 23 acres on which the inn is situated is marked by seven springs.  The elevation exceeds 3500 feet.  And there are several hiking trails around the area ---where you can see lots of wildflowers this time of year.

And for us,  besides a great place to stay and a great restaurant there,  this inn was only 1/2 mile from the Blue Ridge Parkway (milepost 443).

Today I will show you some pictures we took of the outside of the inn.  In another blog,  I'll share some inside pictures...   Above is a picture of the inn (and sign) from the bottom of the hill looking up there.  Be sure to enlarge the photos for larger pictures.

Here's another cute sign posted on a bench --on the road up to the inn.

Here's a closer view of the front of the inn.  The porches (complete with rocking chairs) run the length of the building --on both the 1st and 2nd floors... There is a huge Balsam Fir on the left in this picture.

While walking up on the porch,  we saw this sign.  

Who is that lady relaxing on the porch?????  They have a huge library inside ---so if you forget to bring a good book,  I'm sure you can find one.  You can rock in the rocking chairs --and just read all day long (unless you are US ---who would rather be out hiking)..... ha

Here's the view from the porch.   I would have a hard time concentrating on that book --with this view all around me....

This is a view from the 2nd floor porch looking back at another wing of the inn.  The inn restaurant is on first floor (where all of the windows are)...  IF the weather had have cooperated,  we could have had breakfast and/or dinner outside down there.

Finally,  here is one more view from the porch of the beautiful area around Balsam Mountain Inn...  If you ever get to this area,   check this place out... We got our visit through Groupon online ---and the price was definitely right.

Hope you had a marvelous Easter Weekend.  We certainly did!!!!

Have a wonderful Monday.