Friday, April 7, 2017

Spring Biltmore Tour, Part 3

Welcome to Part 3 of our Spring tour of the Biltmore House in Asheville, North Carolina.  If you read the first two posts, thank you for your interest!  If you'd like to catch up on those, you can find them Here and Here.

Today, I want to show you a bit of the downstairs at Biltmore House.  This section didn't feature any movie costumes, but it was interesting, nevertheless.

First, my favorite room in this part of the house -- the kitchen.  Don't you love all the copper cookware??!!  That's also a pretty big stove, and check out the size of that hood.  I imagine some large meals got whipped up in that range.  I find the black rather depressing, though; I would certainly rather have a white stove, but I guess this was what they used in that time period.

Here's a closer look at the range.  The black cabinet (?) on the left holds a collection of vintage tins.  I thought those were neat.

Don't you know that great big pot in the back would probably cost big bucks nowadays?  I love copper cookware, but my pocketbook doesn't.  ;)

Those look like two wooden butter molds in front of the potatoes; what do you think?

I love the wooden chairs with the rush seats, and aren't these terrific old farm tables?

An early ice box --

I'm not sure what this contraption is.  We saw a device that was used to make lard, and also sausage, and it looked similar to this one.  I'd never seen one, but my father-in-law explained what it was.  His grandparents were farmers, and they had one when he was growing up.

Of course, I loved the fact that even the kitchen had pots of fresh flowers.

Isn't this a pretty image?  I love the bright, pink tulips in the white jug with a lacy white doily underneath -- simple and utterly charming.  :)

I think these containers of vegetables and flowers with the dark background look almost like old-fashioned still life paintings, especially the pitcher of tulips.

This is the servants' dining room, right off the kitchen.  This room really reminded me and my mother-in-law of Downton Abbey.  Again, look at all the flowers, even on the small buffet.  Hydrangeas, narcissus, and tulips, and in the centerpiece are more hydrangeas, and delphiniums in three different colors.

The last few pictures are of the recreational areas in the basement.  Mr. Vanderbilt had these built for his personal use and for his guests to use, as well.

First is the gymnasium and weight room.

Next, the bowling alley.  This was not automated, so I'm sure someone had the job of standing at the end of the lane and picking up the pins and setting them up again.

And finally, the swimming pool, which no longer has water in it.  I imagine that would be too much of an insurance liability.

There were also several changing rooms, or dressing rooms, in the basement with mirrors and fresh towels for people to use after exercising.  I had to use these pictures from our Christmas candlelight tour (hence the Christmas tree on the table) because we didn't take any pictures of these rooms this trip.

The servants' bedrooms were also in the basement.  This is one of their bedrooms below.

This is one of the servants' bells similar to the one we saw in Downton Abbey.  This particular one has the label "Butler's Pantry" above one of the buttons.

So that's it for the basement tour.  We also have Christmas pictures of the kitchen and servants' dining room, which I'll show at Christmas.  I really enjoyed seeing the kitchen in the daylight; it was pretty dark in there during the candlelight tour.  It's a wonderful old room that gives us a peek into how things  were done in those days.  I hope you enjoyed seeing the kitchens as much as I did.

I'm glad to get these posts published because now I feel like I have a record of what we saw on our visit.  Some of these things I don't remember seeing as we went through the house, and that's why I'm so grateful that we can take pictures inside now.  It's very hard to take it all in while you're in there walking around.  I have some more rooms to share with you and some gorgeous costumes, but I'll do that next week or the week after. 

I'll be paying your blogs a visit now -- looking forward to seeing what you've been doing!  Thank you so much for your visit today; I really do appreciate my readers!  I hope you have a wonderful weekend.

Hugs XX,



  1. It must have taken an army to keep the Biltmore going... Yes, that black stove is a bit overwhelming. Wonder how many would have been able to cook there at the same time. Either that or someone was very good at multi-tasking.

    Yes, definitely the accoutrements of butter making...I see the butter paddle to press the butter into the molds just ahead of them. I have one that I use as a stirrer for making candy.

    The contraption you wonder about looks as if it might be a coffee bean grinder. I enjoyed the tour through the basement...very interesting.

  2. The contraption is a coffee grinder. Isn't Biltmore fun!! Love the gardens. Great job of pictures through the house. I think it is great that they finally changed their policy and now allow all the pictures you want.

  3. I think the basement was my favorite part of the Biltmore. Maybe it was the kitchen!

  4. I, too, enjoyed the basement tour and the kitchen with all the copper pots. That is nice that you could take photos throughout. When Katie and I were there in 2014 we were not allowed to take photos inside.

  5. What a huge kitchen. I guess it would have to be big to cook for all the people who lived and worked there. Those copper pots are so beautiful and add a lot of character to any kitchen. I thoroughly enjoyed these posts of your visit to Biltmore.

  6. I just went through parts 1 and 2 and now this one. It was so nice to see the Biltmore again through your lens, Denise. I know that you remember that this was the last trip that Rich and I took the year before he passed away. Thank you for letting me relive the beauty through your pictures.



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