Nate and I went on a final getaway before baby #4 and let me tell you what, Asheville was the perfect place to do it! There is so much good food, the weather was perfect, and I loved going into all the local shops. I am going to share where we stayed, ate, and shopped. This is not meant to be a full guide to Asheville, but rather just some suggestions based on where we went. There are so many amazing places to stay and eat! And that’s not even including all the outdoor activities. Without further ado, here’s our trip in a nutshell.
WHERE WE STAYED:
We opted to stay at the Omni Grove Park Inn, because at the end of the day, we knew we didn’t want to do much. We wanted a pretty place to relax and sit and see some mountains without having to climb any. We are both so tired. So, we went to Asheville and did zero hiking. Not even a leisurely walk for this girl. I wanted a fireplace and a book and a decaf latte. The Grove Park delivered!
I will say, we were not able to get into the spa and that was a bummer for sure. I called the day after we booked and they told me that the spa books a good 4 months in advance. I then called the week of our stay to see if there were any cancellations and sadly there still weren’t. So if you do choose to stay here, book the spa early! We instead had massages downtown at a place called Spa Theology and it was so great. We went into Asheville a bit early, shopped around, then got massages. A lovely afternoon.
We stayed in the Sammons wing and loved how it was attached to the main hotel. Our room was great. Nothing to rave about, but also nothing to complain about. We had a king size bed, great view, and a bathtub (the bathtub was something Nate special requested; he knows me too well!). I had heard the rooms were a bit dated so we went in with that expectation and honestly really enjoyed our room. I mean, give us a space to ourselves with a TV and good pillows and we are in heaven. From what I could tell, none of the rooms had balconies. That is the only thing I wish we had. I would have loved to sit outside without leaving our room. However, the windows did fully open and we opened them every morning. Also, there are seriously so many placed to sit at the Grove Park with amazing views I always found a nice place to read and look at the mountains.
We ate a surprising amount of meals at the Grove Park and it did not disappoint! I am going to do the meals by day:
Drinks and the bar menu while watching the sun set on the Grove Park terrace. We got there right as the sun was setting and ordered off the limited bar menu. I gotta say, the Caesar salad was out of this world good! Nate has a little plate with grilled cheese and tomato soup. He also had an Old Fashioned and I sipped some red wine while being very envious of his Old Fashioned. We had snacked a lot in the car so this was perfect.
For breakfast Friday we went to the breakfast buffet. It was HUGE! And here is where you need to know we totally bricked in a large way: we did not realize that the buffet was included in our stay. On that first day we got the bill and left a tip and signed it to our room. The buffet was $30/person. Not insanely expensive, but neither of us felt like we needed to eat a giant breakfast everyday and spend over $75 on it. What we didn’t realize was that the breakfast was complimentary (we must have chosen a package that included breakfast) and the only thing that actually charged to our room was the tip. Really wish we had realized this and just gone there for breakfast everyday. Oh well.
For lunch we headed into Asheville early to grab a bite and walk a bit before our massages. Tupelo Honey came highly recommended by many and we were able to get a table outside. SCORE! We both thoroughly enjoyed the extra crispy fries and then Nate had the Sweet and Spicy Chicken Sandwich while I had the Mountain Harvest Bowl. Unfortunately, I didn’t love the bowl. I think it was the cauliflower rice for me. I needed something that wasn’t a veggie in the bottom. I will say, I think my mom would have devoured this bowl! It was gorgeous, but the cauli rice was a texture struggle for me. I would have preferred regular rice.
We also stopped in at The Chocolate Fetish where I purchased a piece of smore’s bark that was to die for. They had tons of specialty chocolates and truffles and caramels. Heaven!
We came back to the Grove Park to eat at Edison. This restaurant has breathtaking views of the mountains and somehow we scored a table on the porch. I got another Caesar salad and Nate did as well. The Caesars at Grove Park were just so dang good. I think it had something to do with the parmesan and the bread crumbs.
There was another little breakfast place you could stop into and get something on the go. We both opted for bacon, egg, and cheese croissants and Nate got black coffee while I enjoyed a mocha latte. While it remains a bummer we didn’t realize the buffet was included in our stay, it was really nice to grab breakfast and go eat it outside on the terrace. Every morning was perfectly cool and foggy; a much needed change from Charleston in September.
For lunch Saturday we went into Biltmore Village hoping to shop a bit and find a sports bar to watch Penn State play. Well, there was nary a sports bar to be found so we shopped a bit then headed back to Edison at Grove Park to watch the game. I am so glad we did because we both got the burger that was fairly life changing. I mean…SO. GOOD! One of the best burgers I have had.
We both were in a coma after this and went back to our room to watch the second half of the game. (By watch I mean Nate actually watched and I took a hot bath.)
For dinner Saturday we went to a little French restaurant in town my friend Lily recommended called Bouchon. We needed a reservation and I am so glad we made one (this was the only reservation we made the whole trip). We had had such a huge lunch we ordered lighter at dinner and everything was very fresh and delicious. Bouchon sources all their produce and cheese locally and you could tell. The caprese salad was by far one of the best I have ever had (tomato was out of this world). Nate started with the caprese (trying his is what sold me on it) and then had the French onion soup.
We left Bouchon and were walking down the road and I saw this place. Had we had one more night, I would have wanted to go here. I love Indian food, and this looked mouth watering good (I stared at people through the window). My friend Lily confirmed it is good so we will have to go next time!
We grabbed the same breakfast as Saturday morning and I sat by the fire and read for one final time while Nate showered and packed up. We missed the little people but were also not ready to leave!
There were so many cute little shops to walk around and I took full advantage of doing so. I am going to give you a quick list of my favorite stores we popped into:
Duncan and York: this might have been my favorite! Had stuff for adults and kids alike. The owner was the kindest woman and I bought the kids some cute prizes here as well as some Rifle Paper Co. journals for me.
Lou Lou Boutiques: this was another cute boutique for women that also carried ABLE bags!
Ware: this is a store with tons of recycled and sustainable options. The aesthetic was unbelievable in there. I wanted my kitchen to look like that store.
Tops for Shoes: I have been to this store before and it is one of the better shoe stores I have seen. They have so many styles and options; it takes up a whole corner!
Provisions Mercantile: this was located in Biltmore Village (there is another location as well) and was so cute. Lots of eclectic cookware and household items as well as coffee and wine.
H and L Modern Goods: I loved the way the owner set this store up so much I told her so! It was bright with lots of plants and so many gorgeous home goods items. Had a Joanna Gaines vibe to me.
Mast General Store: is it even a trip to the mountains if you don’t go to Mast General!? Someone in my DMs said Mast General is like Cracker Barrel and REI had a baby and that is pretty accurate! You can get everything from boatloads of candy to a whoopie cushion to a new Patagonia jacket or Lodge cast iron skillet. It really has it all and they bring a wonderful nostalgia when you enter.