Asheville, NC


Below is a list and description of all the hotels we have experienced in Asheville, with a description of each.  Please note that prices vary at all these hotels depending on the season.  Sometimes Aloft Downtown, for example, is more affordable than other busy times.

Aloft Asheville Downtown

Stay here for walkability in downtown Asheville.  It is always a comfortable stay and affordable compared to other hotels in the area.  This hotel has a cute lobby area with an outdoor patio and also and outdoor pool and deck.  A few of our favorite restaurants to walk from here is Tupelo Honey (one of our favorites for breakfast), The Lobster Trap (you must try the shrimp and grits!!), SkyBAR (beverage with a view), and Chocolate Lounge for dessert.  This location has deck parking that is fairly easy to get in and out of.  We can get to any of the Asheville destinations in a quick drive from here.

Crowne Plaza Resort

We stayed here with a group for work.  It was affordable, nice, and conveniently located.  It is a short drive to downtown, Biltmore, and West Asheville.  You are not in walking distance to anything, so you can expect to hop in the car.  While we did not have time to utilize the resort amenities, there is an indoor pool, outdoor pool, and spa.  There are also tennis courts in walking distance.

Grand Bohemian

This will be an luxury stay and what we’d consider a splurge.  The location is perfectly situated outside the entrance of the Biltmore Estate in Biltmore Village (click link to explore shopping and eating).  We recommend Corner Kitchen for breakfast or dinner (both if you have time!)

Grove Park Inn

While we have never stayed here together, we have spent a lot of time at this Omni hotel.  Every trip to Asheville, we will visit at least once, but usually multiple times.  Our favorite excuse is to grab Gifford’s toasted coconut ice cream from the little coffee shop in the hotel.  We will also try to catch a sunrise on the front balcony of the hotel or grab a drink while listening to music in the lobby.  The spa here is recognized as one of the best and is a destination in itself.  You get a round a golf in too!  We usually don’t book here because it is one of those places you do not want to leave – it offers so much, including amazing food.  We love it, but we like to explore too much while we are visiting!

Fairfield Inn & Suites Asheville Tunnel Road

Similar location to the Holiday Inn & Suites Asheville Downtown (listed below), where you need a comfortable place to sleep in close proximity to all there is to do in Asheville and the surrounding area.  Whether shopping Biltmore Village or exploring  downtown Asheville, you can hop in the car for a quick drive.  Staff is friendly, breakfast is served in the morning, and the rooms are comfortable.  We stayed in a King Suite that has a pull-out couch.  This room and the bathroom was spacious.  There is also a small indoor pool and small gym.

Haywood Park

This hotel is also in downtown and easily accessible to all the fun spots.  It was historically a department store, so you’ll be staying in a restored, unique room here.  Ours was large, comfy, and very cool.  It is pricier than Aloft but you’ll have a different experience.  I’d say it’s a more romantic setting for a more special occasion.  Tupelo Honey is just around the corner, along with Thristy Monk, a special multi-level bar worth checking out.  The hotel has a restaurant in the lobby, Isla’s Bistro, where we just grabbed a snack and drinks.

Hilton Asheville Biltmore Park

This hotel is located in Biltmore Park Town Square.  It’s about a 20 minute drive to downtown Asheville and a 10 minutes drive to Sierra Nevada Brewery.  The hotel is very nice and the location is a different scene than our usual in Asheville.  It is conveniently located off I-26, making it easy to explore all partys of the area, while you can also walk to shop or eat.  We hit P.F. Chang’s for dessert!  Dupont State Forest is about an hour away, where we went for hiking.

Holiday Inn & Suites Asheville Downtown

Affordable and close to downtown Asheville and Grove Park Inn.  Great option for IHG loyalty members who just want a place to sleep when visiting.

Village Hotel at Biltmore

This hotel is located inside the Biltmore Estate.  It is a more affordable option that The Inn and very condusive to freinds or family visits.  This is is good option if you want to spend a lot of time on the estate.  You can eat at one of the few restaurants on site, partake in activites hosted at the estate, such as yoga or hiking, and enjoy free wine tastings.  The property is beautiful and great for getting outside during nice weather seasons.  You can also purchase a ticket to tour the Biltmore House.  Just outside the estate, you can shop in Biltmore Village and grab a meal at Corner Kitchen (we’ve had breakfast and dinner here multiple times and it’s great!).


12 Bones Smokehouse – River – Located in the River Arts District.  Great menu, good sauces.  Check out the “just a taste” section of the menu if you have a hard time choosing one thing. Grab a beer and relax!

Biscuit Head

There are three locations in Ashville.  Biltmore Avenue tends to be the most convenient location for us.  The space is small and will most likely have a line out the door.  Don’t be intimidated – it goes quick.  You won’t regret waiting.  Fair warning that the portions are big.  We can’t ever seem to share though.  If your order doesn’t come with gravy, make sure to get it on the side.

Corner Kitchen

Located in an historic house in Biltmore Village.  The atmosphere is great!  Paul has always loved Corner Kitchen, and he took me there on our first trips to Asheville together.  I then fell in love (with the food :)).  We later had an opportunity to meet with co-owner, Kevin Westmoreland, who is delightful.  There’s love behind the concept and the food creations.  They are open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.  However, we mostly go for dinner.  It’s a nicer meal but not formal.  We typically are in jeans.

French Broad Chocolate Lounge

Local to Asheville, this is a wonderful spot to get yourself a sweet treat.  Aside from all the chocolate indulgences, there are other desserts, such as vanilla cakes, ice cream, and beverages.  Depending on the time of day, there may be a line.  It moves quick.

Lobster Trap

Located in downtown Asheville, you will get your seafood fix here.  While there are plenty of options, including oysters on the half shell, chilled seafood towers, and surf & turf, we always go with the maple bacon scallops for an app and the Blue Ridge shrimp and grits.  Yum!  Similar to Corner Kitchen, this will be a nicer meal but not formal.

Sierra Nevada – Mills River

We vote this as an all the time must!  Besides the beer, the food is consistently great, and they have an amazing back yard!  An evening may consist of grabbing a beer tasting, followed by lunch, then relaxing outside with other patrons.  We almost always meet new people here!  This is kid friendly with games.  We enjoy sitting in the oversized rocking chairs and forgetting about any problems in the world!

Sunny Point Cafe

Located in West Asheville.  We have only been for breakfast, and it is always savory and consistently delish!  I’m not sure there’s anything bad on the menu.  Be warned that on busy weekends or holidays, there can be a lengthy wait.  However, they have the whole waiting thing figured out.  A coffee station is set up at the outside yard area, where you can hang out with other hungry people.  They also offer, for purchase, baked goods while you wait.


Biltmore Estate – Plan to spend several hours here. To get through the gate, you must purchase a ticket (unless you are staying at the hotel or inn).  Touring the house alone could take a couple of hours, but make sure you save time to stroll through the gardens and head over to the wine tasting area (which is located by the hotel).  There are free wine tastings and premium paid wine tastings.  There is also a new bar on site near the wine tasting room.  If you stay on property, there is horseback riding, walking trails, and usually yoga is offered.  You don’t necessarily have to leave the property if you choose to stay at the hotel or inn.  There is so much to do.

Biltmore Village

Located right outside the Biltmore Estate entrance.  Spend an afternoon strolling through shops (some boutique, some chain) and grab a snack or a meal at a variety of restaurant options.  The Grand Bohemian Hotel is located in the village and has a really cozy lobby.  Grab a drink and enjoy the ambiance!

Blue Ridge Parkway – An absolutely beautiful winding drive through the Blue Ridge Mountains. There are multiple access points to enter the Blue Ridge Parkway from the Asheville area.  However, the most convenient is probably the entry point about a mile from the Biltmore Estate.  Either follow signs or plan ahead by clicking the Parkway link above.  You can simply ride the parkway or plan a day trip.  For example, we rode to Blowing Rock one morning for shopping and lunch and stopped at the Switzerland Inn on the way.  The view from the front lawn is incredible.  However, if you misstep, you might feel like you’ll roll down the mountain.  I walked with caution :).

Disc Golf:

Richmond Hill Park  – This course had a lot of hills and valleys, so be prepared for a workout.  It’s a more challenging course.  Great signage.

Buncombe County Sports Park – This course is more friendly to beginners.  It has some ups and downs but not near the extend of the Richmond Hill Park.  Also good signage.

Dupont State Park- This is a great outdoor recreation area about 45 minutes outside of Asheville.  Bike or hike, among other activities.  We’ve hiked to some of the water falls.  There are options for all levels.

Grove Park Inn – There’s a multitude of things to do here whether you are staying the night or just stopping in.  There are several restaurants if you want a meal.  You can grab a drink at the lobby bar and cozy up next to one of the large fire places while listening to live music.  You can go down to the dueling piano bar.  It too is a cozy atmosphere.  You can come early in the morning to see one of the most beautiful sunrises in the area.  Or you can spend a day at the world class spa, with indoor and outdoor pools, a relaxing lounge area, and just about any service you can imagine.

The view from Sunset Terrace at Grove Park
Lounging in the hotel lobby!

River Arts District (RAD) – An up and coming area along the French Broad River, you will find former industrial and historic buildings recreated into artist studios, restaurants, and more.  Home renovations and new apartment complexes are being constructed near the RAD. This is already a very unique destination and I can’t wait to see how it evolves in the coming years.

Sierra Nevada Brewery – Mills River – Breweries are fun, no doubt, but there’s something special about Sierra Nevada.  As you’re driving up the winding hill to the brewery, you may notice the detail in the brick work and delicate designs on the bridge.  The operation is located on a large amount of land, so you are surrounded by trees.  When you get to the top of the hill, you’ll be amazed at the front of the building and the size.  Grab a snack or meal to go with your beer sampling, then wander out back to relax or take  stroll to the French Broad River.  You can also do a tour of the brewery.  This is family friendly and pet friendly outside.  We have yet to hear live music, but they have a beautifully placed stage for concerts in the backyard.