The Omni Grove Park Inn: A Historical Retreat

Omni Grove Park Inn

The Omni Grove Park Inn was "Built for the Ages", in the words of its creator, Edwin W. Grove. Boulders and other natural materials were used to craft the astonishing center, and once lone portion of the grand structure, back in 1913. While the destination has undergone various transformations, sometimes drifting from its naturalistic style, the Omni Grove Park Inn never strayed far from its roots. In 2012, a 24 million dollar renovation made it one of the best spa getaways in America.


Today the property has greatly expanded with additional lodging wings, a world class spa and several restaurants to add to its mountain views. A short trip or an extended stay, the offerings of the hotel make for an unforgettable getaway.

Several dining options are available, but the Blue Ridge breakfast buffet is perhaps the showstopper. With a farm to table concept, options are fresh, flavorful and of artisanal quality. When indulging in the morning buffet, you must try:

-Grits with tomatillo sauce
-Quinoa Porridge with apples and cranberries
-Housemade Chocolate Cake Donut
-Maple Blueberry Sausage
-Smoked Salmon

For a lighter breakfast, you can stop at the Spa Cafe for muffins, juices and other healthful choices. Wearing your robe and swimsuit is perfectly acceptable here.

You have the option to stay in rooms that hold the same resemblance of those from the early 1900s. Antique furniture and fixtures add historical charm that deepens the experience.

The modern rooms of the more recently added wings carry the same charm, but with a bit more modern flair. Granite countertops, subway tile and clear glass shower doors give off spa vibes while plush beds, and lantern style lighting create a cozy atmosphere.

Housekeeping whisks into the room seemingly undetected to add pleasant touches. When returning from dinner, sheets are folded back, lights are dimmed and relaxing music is playing in the backround.

The Spa
The 50 million dollar, subterranean style spa was not an original fixture; but looks as if it has existed for centuries. Stone stairs lead from lounges down to gender specific wings. Here, you can soak in the contrast pool, detox in the steam room, find your Zen in the inhalation room or relax in the sauna. Snacks and wellness teas are available in men's and women's lounges.

From here, a pathway leads into a cavelike coed area with water falls, fiber optic star ceilings, mineral pools and an outdoor hot pool with mountain views and a fireplace.

A couples longue can be found within the treatment area. Treatments range from facials, massages and other skin treatments. Color therapy pods will soon be introduced after the staff goes through intense training. Only proven therapies are used at the spa, not trends.

Artifacts and History
When walking the halls, there is always something to see, from portraits of celebrity guests like Harry Houdini and Thomas Edison, to antique furniture and cases filled with items from the early years. Two of only three known Roycroft grandfather clocks, valued at 1 million dollars each, are among the prized antiques.

The hotel has stuck strongly to their Arts and Crafts style roots. Rugs, wallpaper, wood detailing and fixtures often date back to the early 1900s. Many rooms have either been kept at, or restored to, their former glory. A walk through the halls feels as if you've wandered back in time.

The Location
Set in the Blue Ridge mountains of Asheville, North Carolina, the view at the Omni Grove Park Inn can only be described as breathtakingly spectacular.

Whether taking in the view from the terrace, lobby, Blue Ridge restaurant or hot tub; it's sure to bring you feelings of peace and deep relaxation. Your one stop shop for total revitalization; the Omni Grove Park Inn has stood the test of time. It's truly "Built for the Ages."

Karyn Wofford
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Karyn Wofford is a writer with an expertise in lifestyle, wellness and travel. She's a contributor to Livestrong, the Mother Earth Living Blog, A Luxury Travel Blog and Diabetes Forecast. Karyn is also a US Global advocate for T1International. Follow her on Twitter @karynwofford