Built between 1889 and 1895 as a residence for George Vanderbilt and his wife Edith. It is the largest privately owned home in the United States. As a matter of fact, this house has 43 bathrooms, 35 bedrooms and 65 fireplaces! Considerably large by any standard! Not to mention, there is also a bowling alley, gym and pool in the house. Uniquely advanced for that time.
The tour of the Biltmore Estate is self guided tour and there is an admission discount if you stay at The Inn at Biltmore as well. Staying at the Inn also gets you a free audio guide which has great information. In addition, there is also a complimentary shuttle for guests that will take you around the grounds.
My Photo’s of Biltmore Estate Tour
I’ve include many photos that I took during my Biltmore Estate Tour and hope they show the the grandeur and luxury of the Biltmore. I was not allowed to use flash, regardless, there was good light for most pictures. For the most part, I am categorizing the photos in the order that I toured the house.
The house itself is almost overwhelming with all of the rooms and decor. Mr. Vanderbilt collected many very old pieces of art, furniture, etc. which he purchased on his many trips to Europe.
The Formal Dining Room
Also known as a Banquet Hall, it is designed with almost a medieval look. This room includes a pipe organ and a huge fireplace, in addition, tapestries hang from the walls which were from the 1500’s.
The Breakfast Room
Not just a breakfast room, but lunch as well. Notice in the middle photo, a hidden door is located behind the picture on the right. Traditionally used for servants to bring the meal to the room.
The Formal Sitting Room
The Music Room
The Tapestry Room
Tapestries are dated from the 1530’s!
My favorite room! Not only because I love to read, but also because the books are displayed so beautifully! In addition, the painting on the ceiling is gorgeous.
Mr. Vanderbilt’s Bedroom
Mrs Vanderbilt’s Bedroom
The Bowling alley has two lanes, interestingly, servants had to retrieve the ball and set the pins back up as there was not automation back then. With that being said, someone would write the scores as well.
The Indoor Pool
The indoor pool is another place in the house that is very modern for its time. In addition to being a heated pool this pool also has underwater lighting. Unfortunately, there were no chemicals or filtration system available to keep the water clean. Therefore the need to drain the pool every few days was important.
This gym has basically the same equipment we use today, of course not as modern. It boasts a rowing machine, dumbbells, medicine bells and climbing ropes.
The Servant Bedrooms and Servant Dining Room
The servants bedrooms are much different than Mr. and Mrs. Vanderbilts, yet considered comfortable and top of the line for servants during that era.
The Kitchens and Laundry
The Biltmore Estate tour includes a view of the different kitchens. There is a main kitchen, pastry kitchen, and rotisserie kitchen.
The Billiard Room
Although the billiard room is traditionally a place for the gentleman to congregate, ladies also could enjoy a game there as well.
The Smoking Room and The Hunting Room
The smoking room and hunting room were for the gentlemen. Guests at the estate could enjoy hunting in the mountains and Mr. Vanderbilt had many guns for his guests to choose from.
Indoor Garden and Staircase
Having an indoor garden was in vogue during the late 19th century and the Vanderbilt’s created a beautiful one. It is just off of the entry way and is quite grand. The staircases at the Biltmore estate are also very grand and ornate.
Views From the Biltmore Estate
You can’t beat the views from the Biltmore Estate. Everywhere you look, there is a fantastic view to see.