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Biltmore House Guided Tours: Architect, Butlers, Family, Wine

Our Biltmore Guide: Biltmore Overview | Biltmore House Inside Photos | Gardens | Winery | Antler Hill Village | Christmas at Biltmore | Biltmore House Christmas Photos | Christmas Tree Raising | Biltmore Blooms | Summer Concerts | Fall at Biltmore | Winter Outings & Specials | Special Vanderbilt Exhibit | Hiking, Biking, Outdoors | Biltmore Events Calendar | Inn at Biltmore Hotel | Specialty Guided Tours | Vanderbilt History | Recipes | American Downton Abbey | Garden Photo Tour | Biltmore Romantic Spots | Biltmore Wedding | Biltmore Snow

Rooftop Tour of Biltmore House

Architect's Tour
Take a fascinating guided tour in the Biltmore House. Our favorite is the rooftop Architect's Tour. See unrestored areas of the house, including the attic, and enjoy a panoramic look at Biltmore Estate’s grounds, gardens and the Blue Ridge Mountains while examining architectural, structural and technological details. Immerse yourself in history and details. The hour-long tours are offered daily, but not during the winter months. Prices ($17/person) are in addition to estate admission. For additional information and reservations, go to the Biltmore Estate Web site.
Biltmore House Rooftop
Biltmore House Rooftop
   
Biltmore House Rooftop Tour
 
Gargoyles on Biltmore House
Gargoyles on Biltmore House
Get a close-up view of the many gargoyles on Biltmore House. The word 'gargoyles' is derived from an old French word gargouille, meaning throat. The English words gargle, gurgle and gargoyle are derived from gargouille. Some believe that gargoyles - sometimes called grotesques - are inspired by the skeletal remains of prehistoric dinosaurs and other fossils. Originally a gargoyle was considered a waterspout, directing water away from a building. Technically an architect calls a waterspout on a building a gargoyle. If a stone carving does not carry water and has a face that resembles a creature, it is technically called a grotesque. Many people believe that gargoyles were created by medieval architects and stone carvers to ward off evil in an imperfect world.
   
Biltmore House Rooftop
 
Biltmore House gargoyle
Roof of Biltmore House
   
Biltmore House Roof
Looking over the Italian Garden, Walled Garden and Conservatory
 
Vanderbilt Crest on Biltmore House
Top of Biltmore House
   
Rooftop of Biltmore House

More Guided Specialty Tours (extra fee) 2014

Biltmore House Butler's Tour (formerly the Behind the Scenes Tour)
Daily. Advanced reservation required. Call 800-411-3812 to reserve.
See how Biltmore House functioned, past and present, and learn about the work of the domestic servants during this 60-minute guided tour, which takes you into unrestored rooms and mechanical areas not open to the public on the regular house visit.
Cost: $17 per person, in addition to estate admission.

Vanderbilt Family & Friends Tour
Daily. Advanced reservation required. Call 800-411-3812 to reserve.
This guided tour spurs your imagination about staying at Biltmore with the Vanderbilts as your hosts. Tour bedrooms not on the regular house visit outfitted with clothing and accessories from the 1900s as your hear stories from your host about customs of the time and the fascinating people who visited Biltmore.
Cost: $17 per person, in addition to estate admission.

Premium Biltmore House Tour
Daily. Two-day advanced reservation required. Call 800-411-3812 to reserve.
Tour the house for two hours with a guide assigned to you exclusively. Includes areas seen in the Butler, Architects, and House Tours.
Cost: $150 per adult in addition to estate admission, $75 per youth and child in addition to estate admission.

Legacy of the Land TourLegacy of the Land Tour
Daily. Reservations suggested. Call 800-411-3812 to reserve.
Take a motorcoach tour of the estate and learn about the history of the land, structures, and former residents. Visit areas not usually open to guests.
Cost: $19 per guest, in addition to estate admission.

Vine to Wine Tour
On this exclusive tour, discover how Biltmore grapes become award-winning wines. Visit areas on the estate not normally seen by guests, including a trip to the vineyards and a walking production tour. Sample wine tastings conclude with a grand tasting. Saturday & Sunday 1:45 PM. Purchase tickets by 11:00 a.m. day of tour.
Cost: $85 per person. Guests must be 21 years of age to attend.

Red Wine & Chocolate Seminar at Winery
Daily: 2 & 4 PM
Discover why chocolate and red wine is a match made in heaven. Please register at the Winery Portal area in Antler Hill Village.
Cost: $20 per person. Guests must be 21 years of age to attend.

Biltmore Bubbles Tour at the Winery
Daily: 5:45 PM
Biltmore Bubbles is a 45 minute program that will allow Estate guests to experience the process by which our sparkling wines are made. Guests will tour the champagne bottling room, learn how sparkling wines are made and taste all six of Biltmore's sparkling wines.
Cost: $18 per person. Guests must be 21 years of age to attend.

Go to the Biltmore Estate Web site for more.

More on the Construction of Biltmore House

Construction of Biltmore House was under way in 1889; it was a massive undertaking that included a mansion, gardens, farms, and woodlands. George Vanderbilt engaged two of the most distinguished designers of the 19th century: architect Richard Morris Hunt (1828-1895) and landscape designer Frederick Law Olmsted (1822-1903). The centerpiece was a four-story stone house with a 780-foot façade—a monument that would rival the surrounding mountains in grandeur. Hunt modeled the architecture on the richly ornamented style of the French Renaissance and adapted elements, such as the stair tower and the steeply pitched roof, from three famous early-16th-century châteaux in the Loire Valley: Blois, Chenonceau, and Chambord.
 
Even after six years, Biltmore House was not complete when George Vanderbilt opened it in 1895; work would continue for years. Its scale continues to be astounding: the house contains more than 11 million bricks; the massive stone spiral staircase rises four floors and has 102 steps. Through its center hangs an iron chandelier suspended from a single point, containing 72 electric light bulbs.

 

     
     

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Enjoy your vacation to Biltmore House, Estate, Winery & Gardens in Asheville!
RomanticAsheville.com Writing & Photography By Mark File - ©2003-2014 File Investments, Inc
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