Distinctive and Elegant Grovewood Gallery
If you love beautiful art and fine furniture, you owe it to yourself to step inside Grovewood Gallery, one of the finest American craft galleries in the Southeast.
Are we gushing?? You Bet!! But it's only because this gallery is truly exceptional. The Grovewood displays outstanding craft works by more than 500 of America's finest artisans. This destination gallery showcases innovative contemporary and creative traditional mountain crafts that are designed and hand-crafted to an exceptional level of beauty. The spacious 9,000 square foot Grovewood Gallery is housed in a two-story English style cottage brimming with Old-World charm. You'll want to take your time exploring every nook here, and don't forget to walk through the outdoor gardens to see the large collection of outdoor sculpture on display there.
The first floor of the Grovewood Gallery displays a dazzling collection of fine jewelry as well as works in ceramics and glass whose range of styles, colors and techniques is breathtaking. The fine art glass on display shines with a rainbow of hues, and showcases hand-blown one-of-a-kind vessels, kiln-formed art glass platters, hand-crafted glass wind chimes, sand-molded slump glass and kiln-fired fused glass works. There is also an extensive selection of sculptures, textiles and wall art on this floor of the gallery.
The entire second floor of the Grovewood Gallery is devoted to fine, hand-crafted furniture, lamps and home decor accessories. The room gleams with the warm hues of cherry, black walnut, mahogany and hickory. Here a maple sleigh bed stands near a delicate Shaker-inspired standing desk. Take a seat in a form fitted hickory rocking chair, or a colorful Adirondack style contemporary chair. Every piece displayed is museum-quality with design styles that vary from clean and contemporary, to rustic, to richly innovative, and occasionally light hearted and whimsical.
>The Grovewood Gallery shares its beautifully landscaped grounds with two small museums housed in English style buildings that were originally built for the highly respected Biltmore Industries.
Edith Vanderbilt, wife of George Vanderbilt of Biltmore Estate fame, established a craft education program that promoted the weaving of high-quality fine woolen fabric. She sold the flourishing business in 1917 to Fred Seely who was instrumental in the design and development of the Grove Park Inn. Seely relocated Biltmore Industries to Sunset Mountain, and the hand-loomed fabrics rapidly gained worldwide recognition for their exceptional quality.
Today, the North Carolina Homespun Museum, which is located next door to the Grovewood Gallery, commemorates and tells the story of Biltmore Industries through displays of weaving-looms, artifacts and fabric samples. Here too are newspaper clippings, photos of notables wearing clothing made from the fabric, and a letter of appreciation from Helen Keller following her visit to Biltmore Industries.
The Estes-Winn Antique Car Museum is located just a few steps from the Grovewood Gallery. This building was once the loom shop where over 40 weavers worked everyday at their looms to create Biltmore Industry's famous homespun cloth. Today The Estes-Winn Antique Car Museum displays Blomburg's collection of rare antique automobiles, including a 1927 4-door LaSalle Phaeton and 1916 Willys Overland-Touring Car. There are also several Cadillacs, automobiles by Dodge, Chevrolet and many others - even a Ford Edsel 2 door Corsair. Many of the cars are in original condition and some even sport their original paint. And all the cars are kept in running condition and are started once a month.
If you wonder how an antique car collection happens to be here, it all began with a moonshine still. Harry Blomburg, an Asheville entrepreneur and owner of the Cadillac dealership, visited Biltmore Industries in the early 1950's. The establishment was for sale and many of its tools and equipment were also being sold. While touring the site looking for tools, Blomburg spotted an old moonshine still. When he asked "how much for the old still" he was told that the only way the owner would part with it is if someone bought the whole business - so Blomburg did!! He breathed new life into the Biltmore Industries, and kept it running until 1980. When the loom building was no longer needed, he moved his collection of rare cars here. But among the classic cars you can also see the old moonshine still that started it all, standing in one corner of the museum.
Both museums are free, although they accept donations. And both have very knowledgeable docents with first hand experience with the collections on display and wonderful stories to tell.
If you are hungry, the Grovewood Cafe serves lunch and dinner in a simple, intimate setting. The varied menu offerings are more affordable than dining at the Grove Park Inn next door, and the small restaurant is far less crowded.
And after your visit to the Grovewood Gallery and Museums, don't miss the must see, absolutely fascinating
Grove Park Inn that is adjacent to the Grovewood Gallery. This premier rustic mountain inn has luxuriously housed the rich and famous for decades, and today the Inn welcomes visitors and guests alike to admire the mountain views from the Great Hall and Sunset Terrace.
Grovewood Visitor Information
To get to the Grovewood, just take the Charlotte Street exit, 5B, off the I-240 in Asheville and drive north on Charlotte Street for about .7 miles. Turn right on Macon Avenue and proceed for .8 mile. Drive into the entrance for the Grove Park Inn Resort and Spa on the left. Turn right at the first stop sign, go through the parking lot and loop past the Sports Complex. Turn left at the stop sign, then turn right into the Grovewood Gallery parking lot at the next stop sign and park next to the Antique Car Museum.
The Grovewood is open daily, except January through February when it is closed on Sunday. There is no charge to visit the Grovewood Gallery, the Homespun Museum or the Estes-Winn Antique Car Museum, but donations are gratefully accepted.
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