If you’re anywhere near Asheville, a stop by The Omni Grove Park Inn is definitely worth your time. A stay is even better. I was recently invited to visit the The Omni Grove Park Inn as a part of a press tour, but to be honest, I already knew it was a wonderful place to visit before I went, because I had stayed before this trip. Still, I was eager to accept, because any reason to return to this beautiful hotel is a good one.
Here’s the thing—The Omni Grove Park Inn is exactly as fancy as it looks. It’s full of history, built in the early 1900s for those with money looking to escape the city for a month or more in the summer. Early guests included Thomas Edison, Will Rogers, and Henry Ford, and F. Scott Fitzgerald lived there for a year in the ‘30s. With the Biltmore Estate close by, those without Vanderbilt money could experience luxury in a building made from granite, in a locale known for its spectacular scenery and crisp mountain air. Its splendor hasn’t dimmed in the century since.
Thankfully this luxury destination for the super rich and famous is no longer exclusionary. In fact, the resort is worth visiting just for a dinner or coffee. The Sunset Terrace offers gorgeous views of the Blue Ridge Mountains with cocktails, coffee, and more for those who just want to enjoy dinner. You can also walk through and appreciate the history of the Great Hall anytime of year, or especially during the holidays when the hotel is fully decorated and award winning gingerbread houses from around the world are on display. I’ve been visiting their Christmas display for years and it is a tradition that brings so much joy.
That being said, in this girl’s opinion, the highlight of the resort is the spa. Honestly, I’ve referred to this labyrinth as an adult’s version of the “mouse house” and I’m not exaggerating. There are no kids allowed, so it is peaceful. You can enjoy hot teas, multiple pools, waterfall therapy, saunas and steam rooms. You will leave feeling like a million bucks, without spending anywhere near that. These amenities come with a treatment; this time, I enjoyed a massage, but I’ve also had a facial at The Spa at The Omni Grove Park Inn and both were heavenly. I’d take a day of serenity here anytime I can. And there’s a spa cafe so you never have to change out of your robe.
The food is also incredible. Yes, downtown Asheville has plenty of scrumptious food, but honestly, if you stay at The Omni Grove Park Inn, they have all the amazing dining you could want without ever getting into your car. They have multiple restaurants, from their high end establishment Vue 1913, the moderate restaurant Edison, the Sunset Terrace, and the Blue Ridge, where a fabulous breakfast buffet is served every morning.
If golf is your scene, they have a beautiful course on the grounds that guests can make use of while they are visiting.
The resort also offers activities that are beyond the norm of a spa vacation or a golf retreat. I was able to enjoy a foraging adventure with No Taste Like Home on the grounds. Our guide, Alan, gave us a tour of the woods and showed us flora and fauna that were able to be eaten and those to avoid. Then we came upon a large mushroom, which weighed 20 pounds. The chefs at Vue 1913 turned the leaves we found and the mushroom into an appetizer and,shockingly, ice cream. I actually found my own dinner and a professional made it taste good. Amazing!
Grove Park will also arrange for adventure off the grounds. We traveled about 30 minutes to Navitat where I ziplined through the Blue Ridge Mountains. I even learned that the reason the mountains often look blue is because of the gas the trees give off into the atmosphere. The resort drove us and brought us back in time for dinner. It was thrilling to say the least, and with a chauffeur it was also completely stress free. I ziplined thousands of feet, and it was exhilarating and yet calming at the same time.
Anyone looking for a luxury vacation with a homey feel should have The Omni Grove Park Inn on their radar. It’s also perfect for anybody who wants a lovely dinner in Asheville. It’s a historic place that feels both luxurious and, at the same time, like your own mountain home.
Keri Lumm is a professional chatterbox who loves watching TV & movies, reading about pop culture, and gawking at any craziness on the internet. You can follow Keri on Twitter.