Book Journeys – The Biltmore Series – Downstairs

Biltmore - DownstairsOur last Book Journey gave an introduction to The Biltmore as a whole, so today, we’re going to take a little tour downstairs. I’ll stop before we get to the library because that’s going to be its own post 😉 But…let’s begin…with our approach.

Biltmore.jpg

The house sits in a most lovely area. The three mile driveway from the Gatehouse to the sprawling Biltmore is called the Approach Road. Landscape Architect, Frederick Olmsted, carefully created a beautiful build-up to the grand unveiling of the estate house. The woods open to a long, green lawn leading up to the house with a rock wall on either side.

The house stands as a centerpiece and welcomes visitors to the beautiful front doors. The Entrance Hall opens to a great view of the Grand Winding Staircase to the left and the lush Winter Garden to the right. The Winter Garden consistently showcases flora of various types, lit by the wood-framed and elegantly carved ceiling of glass.

IMG956576Just beyond the Winter Garden is the largest room in the house, The Banquet Hall. The tapestry-wrapped room houses a dining table which could seat up to 64 people. The high ceilings and massive fireplace add such beauty to this great room.

The Breakfast Room, a more intimate space for family morning meals, is a room with elaborate decor and family portraits, increasing its intimacy.

Interestingly, The Music Room was not finished until 1976, but is an important part of history because in this room some of America’s most precious artwork was moved from the nation’s capital during WWII to keep it safe. Later, a fireplace and some décor was discovered in storage which fit the specifications of the room, so the room was finally finished and opened to the public.

The Tapestry Gallery, a 90-foot long room which leads to the library, is lined with 16th century tapestries and floor-to-ceiling doors which lead out onto the loggia. This was the place of gathering, of afternoon tea, and of…parties.

In my current WIP, this room is used a lot because, not only does it connect to the library, but during the warmer weather, the loggia doors would be opened to allow for more room to dance.

So, what do you know of the Biltmore? Have you ever been? Did you learn anything new today?

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14 thoughts on “Book Journeys – The Biltmore Series – Downstairs

  1. Thank you! Since I haven’t been to the Biltmore, these glimpses are fascinating! Especially when they are in your books. These pictures are lovely!

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  2. I’ve never been there but it sounds beautiful and so interesting. Thanks and now I have another place to put on my bucket list. 🙂

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  3. Having grown up just minutes away from the estate, I have been three or four times, but interestingly enough it was after I moved away from the area. I was on the grounds my senior year of high school to have pictures made for a senior project, that was as close as I got until I was an adult. It’s gorgeous and the Vanderbilt family is still actively involved in preserving this great American castle.

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