Asheville, NC

Omni Grove Park Inn Gingerbread Experience

Laura Marshall

I’ve considered what I could write about such a grand place as the Omni Grove Park Inn.

If you’ve followed my writing at all, you know my hopes are to evoke the feeling of ‘being there‘ and not just a description of the place itself.

I fear I could not do it justice without further exploration. The historic multi-building site is humbling in it immensity and stature. If you’re lucky enough to be there for sunset or sunrise, I’d say it could change your life … gazing across and over the Asheville skyline toward the mountains we all still become breathless at the sight of.

Entering the massive doors of the main hall, you immediately feel dwarfed. The large room is flanked on either side by fireplaces a man could stand in (and did so, during our adventure). I was swept back in time … among kings and queens with their lords and ladies in attendance.

For this experience, I’ll talk about my main draw on a very busy Sunday night before Christmas.

The gingerbread houses for the 30th Annual National Gingerbread Competition.

Flanking several hallways of the grand resort, are the triumphant efforts in flour, frosting, and fondant. One can’t help but stare intently with wonder at the detail on books, a fish, or a swirl among ten thousand on a house so intricate you would stop dead in your tracks if it were found life-size along a lazy country lane.

A freckle-faced boy fishing in a muddied pond, mermaids lounging on barnacle-speckled rocks, and an old log-cabin settled deep in the woods with Santa clinging to a nearby tree. These gingerbread masterpieces and so many more await your gaze of befuddlement and adoration if you visit during this special ginger-scented event.

The hours are fairly strict and quite limiting for the public, but worth fitting your life around. Parking is plentiful though slightly expensive at $25/car.

Worth it in every way or inconvenience as an unforgettable experience … definitely memories to last a lifetime.

Please check the Omni Grove Park Inn website for hours, reservations, and further amenities.

A joyful and merry Holiday season to you and your loved ones, WNC (and Tennesse). ❤️
Classic SantaPhoto byLaura J. Marshall

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Local Happenings and Restaurant Reviewer. Known as the "Mermaid in the Mountains", Laura was raised on Cape Cod and is now a transplant to WNC. She has been writing for over 20 years and contributes to numerous sites, along with being an author of various nonfiction and fiction books.

Asheville, NC

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