Can you think of a more perfect setting for a Hallmark movie than The Biltmore House and especially a Christmas movie? “A Biltmore Christmas” was filmed entirely at the Biltmore Estate earlier this year. I’m especially anxious to see this as we just visited the Biltmore Estate a couple of weeks ago.
It has been about 30 years since we visited and was our first visit during Christmas. I’ll be sharing more about this later. Asheville is less than four hours from us and many parts of the Southeast, so it’s a perfect place for an overnight visit.
Are you a Hallmark movie lover? I am, even though you basically know how it’s going to end. A Christmas movie usually has the standard kiss between the stars getting together and snow starting to fall (even in the South). But isn’t it a perfect setting?
A Biltmore Christmas – A Hallmark Movie
“A Biltmore Christmas” has one of my favorite actors in the starring role, Kristoffer Polaha.
Bethany Joy Lenz is enchanting, and her wardrobe is worth a watch. It starts in the modern day then goes back to 1947 for a remake of a movie filmed at The Biltmore. Lenz knocks over an hourglass and gets transported back in time for the filming of the fictional movie.
The movie was filmed on location at The Biltmore and many residents of Asheville were used as extras.
Several films have used this iconic location for filming, but this is the first time an entire movie was filmed on-site.
Some of these movies include The Swan, Last of the Mohicans, Richie Rich, Hannibal, and even a scene from Forrest Gump.
The Biltmore House Library
The Biltmore House was still decorated for Christmas when the filming began and a few rooms had some extra décor added, such as the library.
When we toured The Biltmore, the library had been decorated this year just as it was during the filming.
The library at The Biltmore is always one of the rooms everyone comments about with the décor, the balconies, the ceiling, and over 10,000 books it hold
It’s hard to say one room is more beautiful than others, but the library is at the top of my list.
A Biltmore Christmas
Are you going to be watching “A Biltmore Christmas”? I will guarantee if you do, you will be making plans for a trip to Asheville to see it in person. If you can’t make it this Christmas, make plans for next year. The Christmas décor goes up about the first week of November.
From The Biltmore Estate Press:
Press release from The Biltmore about the filming of “A Biltmore Christmas”
Lucy Collins (Lenz) is a screenwriter who lands the job of a lifetime when she’s hired to write the script for a remake of the beloved holiday movie His Merry Bride! First filmed in 1947 at beautiful Biltmore House, it has long been considered a Christmas classic. As Christmas approaches, Lucy travels to Biltmore Estate for research. She joins a guided tour of the grounds where she gets insights into the history of the location and the filming of His Merry Bride!, and once inside the house, she’s drawn to a beautiful hourglass.
When Lucy accidentally knocks it over, she finds herself transported back in time to 1946 – the Golden Age of Hollywood – as cast and crew prepare to film His Merry Bride! at Biltmore. Lucy does her best to navigate an unfamiliar place as a woman out of time, charming some and raising suspicions of others. It’s not long before Lucy catches the eye of the film’s dashing lead Jack Huston (Polaha) and although she initially rebuffs his advances, their connection soon becomes undeniable.
Lucy’s sudden appearance sets off a chain of events that put the production in jeopardy. Before she can return to the present, she must make things right or threaten to alter the future forever. Lucy has one chance to go home but must say goodbye to the man who might be her soulmate unless some Christmas magic can keep the curtain from closing on their love story.
Press release about the premiere of “A Biltmore Christmas”
“A Biltmore Christmas,” a new, original movie for Hallmark Channel filmed on the grounds of Biltmore, will premiere Sunday, Nov. 26, 8 p.m. ET/PT as part of the network’s annual Countdown to Christmas programming event.
“A Biltmore Christmas” stars Bethany Joy Lenz (“Good Sam,” “An Unexpected Christmas”) and Kristoffer Polaha (“We Wish You a Married Christmas,” “Jurassic World: Dominion”).
The movie was filmed in January 2023 on the grounds of Biltmore and inside Biltmore House. Biltmore has been home to many productions through the years, but “A Biltmore Christmas” marks the first time Biltmore itself serves as the movie setting. Dustin Rikert served as executive producer, and Andrew Gernhard served as producer. John Putch directed from a script by Marcy Holland.
Director of Destination Entertainment and Events at Biltmore, Travis Tatham, worked with the film crew throughout the production. “We are so excited for Biltmore and Hallmark fans to see this movie,” said Tatham. “Having observed the production and seeing the attention to detail taken, we think people will be enchanted by the story and how it unfolds within the setting of Biltmore, especially during the Christmas season.”
A special treat for guests visiting during Christmas at Biltmore, which begins on Nov. 3, the Library in Biltmore House will be decorated with a 1940s-era theme, paying homage to a major plot line in the movie.
This press information and some photos are used with permission by The Biltmore
Our Candlelight Christmas Evening
We did the Candlelight Christmas Evening and next year I hope to go for a daytime tour. It’s just a whole different look and vibe from daylight to dark. Watch for more details and photos about our visit and tour later this week.
Isn’t the entry beautiful?
In fact, when buying a ticket for one of the home tours, you have the option to upgrade your ticket to an annual pass. I am considering this so we might visit again before the Christmas tours end on January 7, 2024, then again in the spring.
When we purchased our Candlelight Christmas Evening ticket, it included:
- Evening visit to Biltmore House with an Audio Guide
- 8,000 Acres of Gardens and Grounds
- Antler Hill Village & Winery
- Complimentary Wine Tasting
- Complimentary Parking
- Immersive, multi-sensory exhibition:
Italian Renaissance Alive by Grande Experiences
- FREE Next-Day Access to Grounds!
It was great having the option of a second day to visit to take advantage of the complimentary attractions on the grounds such as wine tasting, visiting Antler Hill Village, and the Italian Renaissance Alive. Plus, we chose to have lunch at The Stable Cafe.
The conservatory was decorated inside, and preparations were in process for the winter and spring gardens.
With that second day option, you didn’t feel rushed to do everything in one day and were a lot more relaxing.
Visit The Biltmore Estate All Year Long
Although Christmas is the most popular time, Springtime will be another great time to visit when all the gardens are in full bloom.
A few of my favorite rooms:
The Banquet Hall – This room features the tallest tree in the home at 35’. It’s always a real tree coming from a nursery in North Carolina.
The Working Kitchen – Of course, I saw a lot of the dishes, but the highlight was the Gingerbread House, always prepared by the pastry chefs at The Biltmore.
Mrs. Vanderbilt’s Bedroom – Such a girly room – who wouldn’t love waking up here?
The Breakfast Room – Another beautiful table setting.
There are several tour options and packages so make sure to check out the website for a ticket which fits your budget and needs. I would love to stay on the property on a visit, as that offers you extra benefits as well.
A Few Numbers about A Biltmore Christmas
A behind-the-scenes look by the numbers:
- 8 vintage cars were used during the filming of A Biltmore Christmas.
- 200 yards of artificial snow were used.
- 300 Asheville-area locals were hired as extras in the movie.
- 8,000+ people submitted applications online to be cast as extras, which Hallmark producers said is the most they’ve ever received.
- 9 rooms inside Biltmore House were used for filming: The Library, Tapestry Gallery, Main Hallway, Staircase Hall, Vestibule, Winter Garden, Banquet Hall, the corridor around the Winter Garden, and the corridor behind the Banquet Hall.
- 4 out of the nine rooms were decorated with a 1940s theme. Some of these rooms had multiple variations: some were made to look like an everyday room in the 1940s; a 1940s movie set; or a room set for a 1940s party. Except for the Library, all of the interiors were redecorated for present-day scenes with variations made for the “one-year later” conclusion. Wow, time travel can be confusing!
- 2 exterior locations directly attached to Biltmore House were used for filming scenes: The Loggia and the Library Terrace.
- 4 rooms at The Inn on Biltmore Estate were used as film sets: The Lobby, the Library Lounge, and two guest rooms.
- 11 costumes were worn by star Bethany Joy Lenz in A Biltmore Christmas. Four of them were 1940s-era costumes. Of the collection of 1940s looks costume designer Keith Nielsen created for Lenz’s character Lucy Hardgrove, Lucy’s Finale Ballgown is perhaps the most dramatic. Nielsen sourced an original Carolina Herrera design specifically for its fabric reminiscent of men’s tie patterns of the era. Modifications included a gathered bust that drapes around the back and the addition of a tiered tulle underlayer. Lucy’s necklace is an original 1930s Czech crystal from the collection of Nielsen. This costume will be on display at The Inn on Biltmore Estate throughout the holidays.
- 1 hourglass is used as a plot point in the movie.
- Biltmore is mentioned 9 times in the film.
- 15 days of filming took place at Biltmore Estate in Asheville, North Carolina.
Are You Watching?
If you miss the premiere of “A Biltmore Christmas” tonight at 8 pm EST on Hallmark, or record it as I do many movies, check your local listings for other times. Hallmark is showing multiple times over the next few weeks including, Tuesday, November 28 at 10 pm, Saturday, December 2 at 6 pm, and Friday, December 8 at 10 pm. I’m sure this popular movie will be shown more as Christmas approaches.
Many cable packages include the Hallmark Movie Channels, but if you don’t have it, there’s several ways of streaming these channels such as subscribing to Hallmark, even a free trial period, Peacock, and several others.
Now have I convinced you to watch the movie and visit The Biltmore? Both should be on your list.
See how many of these pictures you can spot in “A Biltmore Christmas”
We had a great stay and unique dining experience at Cambria Hotel Downtown Asheville. It’s a great location. Staying and Dining in a Winter Cabana
For more information about Asheville EXPLORE ASHEVILLE
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