Plan a Weekend Escape at Sourwood Inn
High above the Blue Ridge Parkway just outside Asheville is a bed-and-breakfast that's perfect for couples to unplug and reconnect. Whether you're looking forward to a special birthday or anniversary, or desiring a quiet Mother's Day getaway, Sourwood Inn is a scenic mountaintop retreat that's perfect for relaxation and romance without the kids.
Innkeepers Susan and Jeff Curtis, along with Susan's parents Anne and Nat Burkhardt, welcome guests to their stunning inn that blends the beauty of nature with the luxury of a fine hotel. My husband and I stayed in one of the 12 guest rooms last August, and we look forward to returning to experience the mountains in springtime.
Savory Bites and Breathtaking Views
The cedar and stone inn sits on 100 acres at 3,200 feet on the side of Elk Mountain. There are garden benches, a nature trail that loops past a pond and over streams, and plenty of spaces to unwind outdoors, including rocking chair on the large back porch. Spring and fall are beautiful seasons at the Sourwood Inn, as the cool mountain air and wooded landscape make up for the lack of air conditioning.
Indoors, the inn boasts comfy sitting rooms and about six fireplaces for chilly mornings and evenings, plus a large library with books and games.
A delicious, hot and homemade breakfast is served each morning. Guests can eat in the spacious dining room or take their plates outside to the stone patio on a nice morning. Cool breezes, a bubbling fountain and the melodies of song birds set the stage for dawdling over coffee.
Executive Chef Kacia Stuart also serves a delicious, gourmet dinner Thursday-Sunday evenings. Alcoholic beverages are not sold at the inn, but guests are welcome to bring their own beer, wine or liquor and keep it in the inn refrigerator.
All of Sourwood Inn's ample guest rooms - with a king or queen bed - have a private balcony, a wood-burning fireplace and a large ceiling fan. A private bathroom boasts a separate shower and a garden tub with a view. There's nothing like slipping into an aromatic bubble bath next to windows wide open to the sights and sounds of nature on a moonlit evening.
Romance alert: Rooms do not have telephones or televisions; conversation and cuddling replaces channel surfing. And, there's no cell phone service at 3,200 feet. But don't panic - Grandma or the babysitter can be reached with the inn's main phone.
Daytime Adventures Together
Asheville and the surrounding quaint towns offer activities and eateries to please his and her tastes. There's Biltmore Estate, art galleries, antique shops, swanky boutiques, luxurious spas, biking and hiking routes, ziplines and whitewater rafting.
Bistro 1896 on Pack Square in downtown Asheville is a favorite spot for lingering over drinks and dinner, while listening to various street performers.
My husband and I strolled through boutiques and galleries, and then we headed to nearby Marshall for some wet fun on the French Broad River. About 35 minutes from Asheville, USA Raft operates half-day and full-day whitewater rafting trips, featuring class 2-4 rapids.
A new option we're eager to try the next time we head to Asheville is a zipline canopy tour. Navitat Canopy Adventures in Barnardsville now offers lamp-lighted nighttime tours Thursday-Saturday evenings beginning at dusk.
Whether you tour the Biltmore, shop till you drop, ride the rapids or fly through the trees, retreat to the quiet sanctuary of the Sourwood Inn at the end of the day and snuggle up to share your favorite moments.
If You Go, You Need to Know:
810 Elk Mountain Scenic Hwy.
Asheville, NC 28804
7 Southwest Pack Square
Asheville, NC 28801
Navitat Canopy Adventures
242 Poverty Branch Road
Barnardsvillem NC 28709