Asheville lodging - help pick between 2!

Old Jan 30th, 2006, 09:23 AM
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Asheville lodging - help pick between 2!

Hi all - have been an avid lurker on relocation & different vacationing issues for a while now, but am hoping you can actually help w/ a request of mine???
Hubby & I are coming to Asheville in late May for a late anniversary trip .... are REALLY excited! We've pretty narrowed down what we want to do while we're there: Biltmore, Blue Ridge Pkwy drive & picnic, Grove Park Spa & downtown. The dilemma I'm having is where to stay.... would really prefer to stay in town vs "out" somewhere, but don't think we'd like the traditional B&B. We're not big partiers, but really enjoy that great Downtown feel & being able to walk around to see some sights, ya know? So, I've researched oodles & believe I've got it between the Princess Anne Hotel or the Renaissance, which are comparable in price. Please help??!! Can't find much info at all on the Princess Anne, but am reading some conflicting views on the Renaissance.
Our biggest concerns in our lodging other than location will be cleanliness, peace & quiet, that type of thing - we plan to see the sights, but also want to be comfortable & not feel rushed, if that makes sense.
ANY help at all would be greatlt appreciated, as we're ready to make our reservations - THANKS!
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Old Jan 30th, 2006, 04:59 PM
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I've heard good things about the Princess Anne, which is a smaller inn located in a historic neighborhood just north of downtown. It was reopened last year as an inn after an extensive restoration. It's not really within reasonable walking distance of most of downtown.

The Renaissance is a large hotel located in the heart of downtown Asheville. It's nice enough, nothing special in terms of character since it mostly caters to a business crowd during the week, except for the location. You can walk to everything downtown from there with ease.
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Old Jan 31st, 2006, 02:52 AM
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REally different locations and properties. The Princess Anne is historic and in a quiet residential area off Charlotte Street -but an easy walk into downtown. The Renaissance is in downtown right off the highway. If you want the vibe of being downtown I guess I'd opt for the latter.
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Old Jan 31st, 2006, 04:39 AM
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Thanks for the responses, so far .... was hoping to get some insight from you NC folk!

Actually, Leah, not really concerned about being downtown, as much as don't really be far out - want to be able to walk around to see some sights vs. a cabin in the mountains or @ the Biltmore, ya know?

We really don't do "just us" stuff, nearly as much as we should (how easy is THAT, w/ 2 active kids, jobs, & normal life?!), so we just want this to be a special treat, even if it is just a few hours from home & is only for 4 days or so. So, based on that, does the Princess Anne sound more appropriate, or even a different suggestion?

Any insight & suggestions y'all can offer for our wonderful trip would be vastly welcomed .... already counting down the days! Thanks again -
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Old Jan 31st, 2006, 06:44 AM
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Just an FYI, I believe the Grove Park Spa reserves the weekends for its guests. You may not be able to get in, unless you are staying there.
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Old Jan 31st, 2006, 08:02 AM
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Have you looked at Haywood Park Hotel? That would be my first choice, but make sure you get on a floor higher than 2 (2 needs a makeover). It's perfectly located. Princess Anne looks nice, but would be a much longer walk to any of the downtown stuff.

I have stayed at the Renaissance, and although the location is good (not as good as Haywood, though), I can't believe the prices they are asking after their remodel. I can't IMAGINE what they could have done to make it worth $200, but I suppose what the market will bear....

That's true, Grove Park will not let you book spa treatments in advance if you are not a guest from Fri to Sun according to their brochure. But I bet they would at the last minute. Their policies say you can't have a one night stay on the weekend, but take it from me, you can.

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Old Jan 31st, 2006, 04:02 PM
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I vote for Haywood...boutique hotel and in the middle of downtown. You don't need your car once you are there. I stayed at the Renaissance cause the other hotel was booked. It was ok but could have been a holiday inn. No charm.
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Old Jan 31st, 2006, 05:54 PM
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Yay & thanks, y'all!

Yeah, Litespeed & Westie, I'd looked into the Haywood a little, but a couple of pix I'd seen online weren't impressive..... looked pretty shabby - is that not the case now? I thought this was also the one I'd seen some bad reviews re: their mattresses & bedding; what do y'all think that have more 1st hand knowledge?

Thanks again!
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Old Jan 31st, 2006, 06:01 PM
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Check www.betterbidding.com and see what luck folks are having at the Renaissance via Priceline. I got a deal (really a steal!) a couple of years ago.

For an anniversary trip, I would strongly recommend a room at the Grove Park Inn - in the historic section of the hotel. I just love the Grove Park.
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Old Feb 1st, 2006, 04:55 AM
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Here's my experience at Haywood Park...I think I've only stayed there once. (I live 45 min from Asheville, ususally just go sleep at home)

The lobby is rather un-chic. Sort of 80's brass looking. No less chic than Renaissance, of course. We got a room on the second floor. It was MASSIVE. HUGE. Room, sitting room, hallway to the marble bathroom. But, very 80's mauve in decor. My husband managed to f-up the air conditioning, as he has done in hotel rooms all over the US and once in Paris. So they moved us to another room...this time on the 3rd floor. It was a different world. Smaller room (but not small), but really nicely decorated. Bed was fine. Bellman told us Seinfeld stayed in the room next to us when he played in town. I'm not sure if you have to pay a little more to get 3rd floor, but If it weren't a lot more, it would be worth it. Ask to be on the street side...unfortuately the side that used to face the mountains now faces a condo complex in the final stages of construction.

Downstairs from Haywood Park is the Beirgarden which opens their windows onto the street in warm weather and has a huge selection of beers. Chocolate Fetish is also under the hotel...get a dark chocolate pistachio frog and you won't be sorry. Also, the Flying Frog cafe(outdoor bar) is on the corner next to the hotel, it's the best people watching vantage in Asheville, IMO.
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Old Feb 2nd, 2006, 06:28 PM
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Great tips, Litespeed! Still thinking .... anymore helpful hints from ye that are in the know? Gotta be comfy, not TOO $$$, clean & preferably not too far from downtown. Not crazy about the B&B, but really interested in the inn or boutique hotel idea. Help???!
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Old Feb 2nd, 2006, 06:34 PM
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Well, if you have a car (and I'm sure you will) anyplace is easy to get to in Asheville. I usually stay at one of the Hampton Inns in Asheville. Maybe not the atmosphere you are looking for, but very clean, reasonable and good free breakfast. If you don't like B&B's and $$$ are an issue, then perhaps a Hampton?

If $$$ is not an issue, then it would be the historic rooms at the Grove Park or the Inn at Biltmore for me to celebrate an anniversay.
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Old Feb 3rd, 2006, 03:36 AM
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I want to ditto Litespeed. I love the Haywood Park. I stay at the Grove Park on business, but when I am in town on my own I book the Haywood Park. while the common rooms and club level at the Grove Park are lovely, I have never seen any particular charm in the regular rooms.
Chocolate Fetish is fab, the Flying Frog is probably my favorite Asheville restaurant and the location cannot be beat.
For romance I would pick the Inn at Biltmore. It is expensive. I also love the Richmond Hill Inn but it is a bit out of town.

As to the rooms at the Haywood I have never had a bad one.
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Old Feb 4th, 2006, 05:16 PM
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Wow & thanks to all ...... remembered after a little more research why we weren't going to stay @ the Haywood - the price. We'd really like to not spend more than $150 or so per night; that way I won't feel guilty shopping, eating at the great spots, etc., ya know?!

So, based on that - anyone know anything at all about the Princess Ann Inn (Hotel?) on Chestnut??? The pix on their website looks great, the pricing is perfect & it's in town w/o being totally downtown .....

HELP??!!
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Old Feb 6th, 2006, 06:35 AM
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Have you called Princess Anne? They told me they only had a few of those $125 rooms, everything else considerably more. And Renaissance was $200 last time I looked. Maybe you're better at this than I am ;-)
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Old May 1st, 2006, 05:39 AM
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OK, my wonderful NC connections ..... change of plans, so need your help ASAP, please!!

We're now selling our house (yay! moving to the country), & will be moving around this time frame, so $$$ is an even bigger deal for this trip. Would rather have more $$$ to go into the new house, & don't want to cancel this trip as we've been looking forward to it ..... & NEVER go anywhere together w/o our 2 girls! So, we need to downgrade our hotel to accomodate the trip budget ..... please help?!!

We're looking to spend less than $100 per night; I've done some research online & think it might be down to the Country Inns & Suites on Brevard? Any feedback on this or alternate suggestions? See from previous postings where Tunnel Rd is probably not the best idea & driving everywhere isn't going to be a problem; although it would be nice to be able to walk to something, that's not life-or-death. Biggest requests are non-smoking, clean & quiet rooms (& bathrooms!), comfy beds, decent breakfast..... from what I can tell online, these shouldn't be too terribly hard to fulfill, but wanted some local feedback, please. We're still going to blow the bucks for a day at the GPI (& thanks for the tip SAnParis - they let me make reservations for that Friday early), & the Biltmore, plan to hit downtown, eat A LOT of good food, drive around some, etc. Figured we wouldn't be spending THAT much time in our room, so preferred to sacrifice here vs elsewhere.... hey, we'll be on an anniversary trip not our honeymoon - seeing new sights is more cool than staying holed up in a hotel room, right? LOL!!

And, no pressure or anything, but we'll be there the end of this month, so need to make my reservations ASAP - sorry all, but knew I could count on your brilliant assistance!

Thanks again!
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Old May 1st, 2006, 06:08 AM
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What is the name of that quirky motel in town with the giant neon cowboy? I've always wanted to stay there.

I can picture it in my mind but I can't think of the name!
 
Old May 1st, 2006, 06:12 AM
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Got it! The Mountaineer Inn!

 
Old May 1st, 2006, 06:29 AM
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"Quirky"? Whatcha trying to get me into here, GoTravel? Define "quirky" .... does that include clean & decent?
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Old May 1st, 2006, 06:47 AM
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LOL! It always looks clean and decent but evidently it is a stone motel built in 1939 and very much evokes the middle of the century lodging.

From MSNBC Ashville's Top 25

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/7634183/page/2/

(21) The hillbilly in the sky: Tunnel Road, looping through the outskirts of downtown, has a Red Lobster, Blockbuster, Applebee’s, and a holdout from another time: the Mountaineer Inn. The welcome sign—which includes a giant neon bumpkin in overalls and a floppy cowboy hat, plus several letters in the motel name written backward—has been a city fixture for more than 50 years. There’s a nine-foot-deep pool, and the low-maintenance clientele doesn’t seem to mind that it’s surrounded by blacktop and looks out over the traffic on Tunnel Road. Rooms are bigger than you’d expect for the price, a decent breakfast is included, the people are friendly, and guests are always welcome to grab a hot cup of coffee in the office. 155 Tunnel Rd., 800/255-4080, mtinnasheville.homestead.com, doubles from $40.



 

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