Why luxury cabins? Why now? Well, I’ve covered a whole lot of things to do in Asheville, the Paris of the South, from restaurants to shopping, from east to west, and from north to south. But one question has always loomed over these exuberant proceedings: where to rest one’s weary head after a day of Ashevillean delights.
Well, my usual suggestion is to set up a tent in some dark corner of the Blue Ridge and embrace what you might call an off-the-grid, nuts-and-berries, wilderness survival lifestyle. But I stepped outside today and immediately lost feeling in my extremities, so now I’m thinking, at least for the colder parts of the year, a visitor to Asheville should seriously consider a more insulated shelter.
And if we’re talking about insulated shelters, then I can suggest no better option than a luxury cabin rental courtesy of Asheville Cottages. These are no raw timber lean-tos, folks, but truly a luxury experience befitting a visit to the most cultured and sophisticated mountain town in the entire Southeast. So, if you wish to comprehend all the benefits and considerations of staying at a luxury cabin in Asheville, NC, I invite you to read on.
1: Fully Furnished Kitchen
Stop me if you’ve heard this one before. You’re visiting some far-flung locale, staying at your typical hotel. It’s three in the morning, and after a night on the town, you’re more than ready for some food and some rest. Obstacle number one: everything is closed. But let’s say for the purposes of this thought experiment, you have in some manner acquired a six-pack of pre-cooked frankfurters. Just boil them and you’re good to go.
So, you throw the dogs in a mug, fill her up with some hot water, let them cook, and bang, you hit obstacle number two: no silverware. Now you’re sitting on the carpet, eating luke-warm glizzies out of coffee mug with your bare hands, like some kind of godforsaken hotel hermit. Not to mince words: it’s a terrible dining experience. And that’s not even getting into the matter of condiments.
All that’s to say even if you’re visiting Asheville for the restaurants—which I heartily endorse—and even if flinging around the old pots-and-pans isn’t number one on your relaxation checklist, it pays to stay at a luxury cabin with a fully furnished kitchen, at the very least in terms of flexibility.
Let me take this argument one step further. The kitchens you’ll find in Asheville Cottage’s luxury cabins are no mere kitchenettes nor cooking pits, but the genuine real deal, complete with wine glasses and a gas grill in the back. Heck, with that kind of firepower you could invite over the neighbors. Maybe even treat them to some cuisine prepared with ingredients straight from a local farmer’s market, paired with fine beverages from the South Slope brewing district, or the Biltmore winery.
And finally, if my eyes don’t deceive me, Asheville Cottage’s luxury cabins come pre-furnished with a supply of ketchup, mustard, and mayonnaise. Boom, glizzies saved.
The Local Perspective: If, for whatever reason, you were totally opposed to making use of such a kitchen as I’ve described, there’s always the option of abducting a local, and forcing them to cook in your stead. I for one, after recovering from the initial terror and confusion, would welcome this turn of events as an opportunity to showcase my culinary prowess, win some new friends, and introduce visitors to what it really means to dine in Asheville.
It’s not just the restaurants. Although the restaurants are a big part of it. Maybe most of it. But to truly understand what it means to live in Asheville, I think you ought to have a meal cooked with ingredients from downtown’s French Broad Co-Op, meat from Charlotte Street’s Chop Shop Butchery, and naturally leavened bread from OWL Bakery. That’s the kind of experience you can only get with a luxury cabin’s fully furnished kitchen.
2: Location, Location, Location
Location. For many it’s the prime consideration when it comes to choosing a holiday abode. And if you’re looking at luxury cabins in Asheville specifically, then I applaud you, for you must be an individual of discerning taste to choose my hometown in the first place.
This brings us to the term “cabin.” When most people hear that word, they imagine a naturalistic setting, with all your trees and squirrels and whatnot beautiful scenery to be sure—but the tradeoff is usually that you’re days away from the nearest source of amusement.
But keep in mind, Asheville Cottages doesn’t just rent cabins, they rent luxury cabins, and that means the best of both worlds. You’ve got the woods right on your back step, plus a highly strategic location, presenting reasonable travel times to some of the very best things to do in Asheville. Let me break these down, one by one.
Drive just five minutes to the south of your luxury cabin, and you’ll find yourself at the entrance to the North Carolina Arboretum, with more than ten miles of trails—ranging in difficulty from strolls to strenuous—and sixty-five acres of carefully-pruned gardens, including a bonsai exhibit. If you’re new to the wonders of WNC’s natural environment, it’s a great place to start. Even as a local, and a longtime hiker, I still find myself enjoying a walk at the Arboretum.
But once you’re ready to kick things up a notch, simply go on a couple yards past the Arboretum’s entrance to get on the Blue Ridge Parkway, a marvel of engineering which takes drivers through the depths of the mountain forests, with more trailheads than you can shake a stick at.
For more urban entertainment, take the highway north for about fifteen minutes to find yourself in West Asheville, with some of the hippest restaurants and cafes in town, plus one of Asheville two Dobra Teas, my favorite local tearoom.
And if you’re in West Asheville, you might as well make the short drive on east to the River Arts District, chock full of galleries, artisan exhibits, and of course, more restaurants. And if you’re in the River Arts District, downtown is only five minutes away, and then you’ve got access to boutique shopping, fine dining, the historic Grove Arcade, and the brewing legend that is the South Slope.
To reiterate: all that and more lies within just a fifteen-minute drive of Asheville Cottage’s luxury cabins. Plus, you don’t have to pay for parking. Take that, hotels.
The Local Perspective: Asheville Cottage’s proximity to the Arboretum and the Blue Ridge Parkway isn’t only a convenience, but also an opportunity to, as they say: “live like a local.” Whatever the opposite of a tourist trap is, that’s what you get at the Arboretum and on the Parkway.
Not that I necessarily have anything personal against tourist traps. It’s kind of nice to be tourist trapped every once in a while. But what I mean is when you go for an afternoon walk at the Arboretum—or this time of year, enjoy their winter lights at night—and when you go for a drive down the parkway, you’re engaged in an activity that helps define the Ashevillean identity. Indeed, you are becoming one of us.
3: Amenities of a Luxury Cabin
When people plot out their vacations, I find they normally focus on the outings, the sightseeing, the exterior activities that will fill out their days. All that’s well and good—after all, there’s no shortage of things to do in Asheville—but to every action there is a reaction, a cost of operation, if you will, a time for play, and a time for rest.
In less esoteric terms, allow me to paint a picture. Let’s say you’ve taken the family out on one of the Blue Ridge’s many hikes. You've gotten the old exercise in, stretched the legs. Now you could, if you were staying at a typical vacation residence, conclude this hypothetical day with a hot shower. But what if there were a universe where you had the option, let’s say, of soaking in a hot tub? A private hot tub? Big enough to cook roughly three-hundred gallons of soup in? Not that you would use it for that. I’m just saying.
Point being, I for one would opt for the hot tub. You see, what I think people don’t always account for in their vacation planning, is there will inevitably come a time that they’ve concluding the day’s events, go back to wherever they’re staying, and then what? Well, at Asheville Cottage’s luxury cabins, “then what” could be lounging in a plush recliner, surfing two-hundred channels on a flat-screen from the comfort of a king-sized comfort sleep number bed, partaking of the joys of music via a Bluetooth sound system, or even, of course, sitting in that grand old hot tub.
As la piece de resistance, these luxury cabins in Asheville come with heated bathroom floors. That’s all the comforts of home and then some.
The Local Perspective: The Grove Arcade. The River Arts District. The Biltmore Estate. Places like these define Asheville, and they’re the reason in my own travels I have found nowhere quite the same as my home. So, if you’re visiting Asheville, the Paris of South, host to these exemplary sites, and many others, why not make it luxury all the way down, twenty-four-hours a day, both when you’re out on the town, and when you come back in. Opt for luxury. Opt for a luxury cabin.