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First visit to the West Coast - flying into SFO where do I start?

First visit to the West Coast - flying into SFO where do I start?

Old Nov 22nd, 2019, 10:30 AM
  #101  
 
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Originally Posted by BritishCaicos View Post
Starrs : we dearly love The South and visited Biltmore on our first trip , 20 years ago. We had high hopes but it struck me as the home of somebody who was troubled? Dark and austere without being grand and confident. We were also disappointed by the art collection.
I can see that - the "dark" comments. I go every year for their candelight holiday tour and the house is magnificient when it's decorated. The conservatory simply glows with light. The tree is magnificent. I'll add a video of raising the tree. I do love the estate though. Designed by Frederick Law Olsmsted and it's an incredible "natural" treasure. I don't go in the house in the summer, but enjoy the land. I'm a FLO fan.
Big tree for a big house!

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Old Nov 22nd, 2019, 10:41 AM
  #102  
 
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Still looking for the conservatory photos. Here's the tree from a few years ago.

For scale, chair and presents on the floor.

It's definitely a big house! Posting the photos separately in case someone wants to delete them.
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Old Nov 22nd, 2019, 11:44 AM
  #103  
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That tree looks larger than our town Christmas tree in the main square and the Biltmore tree is inside.

Actually there was one thing that struck me during the tour of the estate.

It was more than 20 nearly 30 years ago, I was in my early 20s. I’ll never forget the guide outlining how the family refused to be overlooked ....at all. So they simply bought every house in direct line of the estate in every direction and demolished them. I came away wondering whether I was every going to be that arrogant or rich enough to remodel a landscape .,,.it never happened! I’m struggling to remodel our garden.

Oh. We also bought some incredible sauces from the estate shop, I also remember places through my stomach. Then it was on to Savannah which I’ll never forget.

Last edited by BritishCaicos; Nov 22nd, 2019 at 11:46 AM.
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Old Nov 22nd, 2019, 12:15 PM
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Originally Posted by BritishCaicos View Post
I’ll never forget the guide outlining how the family refused to be overlooked ....at all. So they simply bought every house in direct line of the estate in every direction and demolished them. I came away wondering whether I was every going to be that arrogant or rich enough to remodel a landscape


I lost my reply. I"m saying this and then plan to edit it.

You had a terrible guide.

That comment was not based in fact. You can visit Vanderbilt homes for days. This one was going to be special and in many ways. FLO's more famous project was Central Park in NYC. The Biltmore estate is 10x that size and was even bigger at one time.

"The house is a staggering 175,000 square feet (four acres) with 33 bedrooms, 65 fireplaces and 43 bathrooms. Almost 10 million pounds of limestone was used to build it. The entire estate originally covered 125,000 acres (now it's a modest 8,000 acres)."

The Hearst ranch was 88,000 acres. I think it's 127 acres today.

If you are really, really rich, what better thing to invest in than land? Art, maybe? Give it away, maybe? But when you can afford to buy up large tracts of land, why not? Rockefeller did it to "save" Jackson Hole (in secret) and then gave it away to "us". I am thankful he did. 10% of the world's wealth was represented when the players were on the private island in Georgia, Jekyll Island. If you didnt visit, return and check out their "cottages". From a link I googled just now -
" We recently took a trip to the Georgia coast, and decided to see the “cottages” at the Jekyll Island Club. Visiting the homes is like a “who’s who” of the Gilded Age – Rockefeller, Pulitzer, Vanderbilt, Goodyear, Macy, etc. Today we’ll be visiting the cottages that were known as Millionaires Row."
The federal reserve bank was created in secret during "the season" to prevent another Great Depression.
If you head back down, you could stay on an almost deserted island (except for primitive campers and rangers) in a Carnegie mansion on Cumberland Island. Check out the Greyfield Inn. I like this description of the Biltmore - https://www.romanticasheville.com/biltmorececil.htm

Looping back to this thread, I really think you should visit the Hearst castle. Since you are staying several days in Monterrey, you have time. The first time I went was during a several day stay in Monterrey. I also recommend a stop at Nepenthe. I try to time for mid-afternoon. I love a drive along the California coast.

If you want to drive just a tad bit more, go to Cambria for some of Linn's famous Olallieberry pie - and take home some jams, jellies and "spreads" that you enjoyed from the Biltmore -
http://www.linnsfruitbin.com/Linns_Restaurant.html
https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attracti...alifornia.html

Last edited by starrs; Nov 22nd, 2019 at 12:41 PM.
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Old Nov 22nd, 2019, 12:44 PM
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I've lost part of a post twice. Trying in a new space.
If you want to drive a tad bit further to Cambria, stop at Linn's (restaurant or farmstand) for Olallieberry pie and jams, jellies, etc. to take home - since you enjoyed the Biltmore's so much.
Video here -
Linn's Fruit Bin - Cambria California
https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g32148-d2667800-Reviews-Linn_s_Original_Farmstore-
Cambria_San_Luis_Obispo_County_California.html

Restaurant -
http://www.linnsfruitbin.com/Linns_Restaurant.html

Edited to add from BC's previous post -
"Oh. We also bought some incredible sauces from the estate shop, I also remember places through my stomach. Then it was on to Savannah which I’ll never forget"

In hopes this post will not be deleted.

Last edited by starrs; Nov 22nd, 2019 at 12:58 PM.
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Old Apr 16th, 2021, 02:15 PM
  #106  
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Thanks for all your help in putting this trip together which 3 months in planning, $17,000 in cost was blown out of the water by our old friend Covid 19.

I managed to recoup EVERY single penny paid, top of the list of nice people were the Air BnB owners in Monterey Bay, SF, Yosemite and Bodega Bay who were all lovely and ensured AirBnB did the right thing.

Top of the list of crooks where Air Lingus who tried every single trick in the book to drag out our refund by 8 months.
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Old Apr 16th, 2021, 05:45 PM
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At least all your research can be filed away for another time (If you can pull yourselves away from that beautiful place in the Bordeaux)
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Old Apr 19th, 2021, 03:11 AM
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The Sonoma Coast is beautiful but for wildlife I have to go with the Monterey area. You are 99% guaranteed sea lions, sea otters, and maybe whales. The aquarium is really worth it. For budget lodging look at Lovers Point Inn.

One great thing about the California coast is there is coastal access everywhere.
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Old Apr 20th, 2021, 03:14 AM
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Elle Melle

i had given all thought of the US for years but I would appear that the way Covkd is panning out , the US may be one of the first long haul destinations to go on the UKs green list. Australia and NZ will definitely be on there but we will not be allowed in.
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Old Apr 20th, 2021, 01:35 PM
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Stu,

How are things in SF now and what do you think the status will in October? We've been looking forward to a return trip to SF/Napa/Simi area -- just concerned about access to wineries, hotels, restaurants and sights? Thanks.
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Old Apr 20th, 2021, 05:23 PM
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Napa/Sonoma just beginning to open up....Locals anxious to have the tourists back. At this point "social distancing" still an issue/masks still recomended. . With the vaccines becoming more available...future does look good.
the thing about Sept.& Oct. are usually really busy (the 'Crush' going on) and i hear reservations are already filling up.


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Old Apr 20th, 2021, 05:24 PM
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Napa/Sonoma just beginning to open up....Locals anxious to have the tourists back. At this point "social distancing" still an issue/masks still recomended. . With the vaccines becoming more available...future does look good.
the thing about Sept.& Oct. are usually really busy (the 'Crush' going on) and i hear reservations are already filling up.

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