100-year-old inns: A mountain hideaway hits the century mark – Part 2
by Kathy Witt
Back in the day (the day being 1919), there were no computers for scrolling through pictures of hotel rooms, choosing the most coveted one and then booking it. Smartphones were called “rotary dial telephones” and were of no help in navigating the best route to this beautiful haven. And gas-powered motor cars weren’t that far removed from their “horseless carriage” days.
As this century-old mountain inn attests, much has changed since 1919.
MOUNTAIN ESCAPE AMIDST THE CLOUDS
Legend has it that North Carolina’s 100-year-old Pisgah Inn got its name from two men of the cloth, in the area at different times and both familiar with Deuteronomy 3:27, which references “Pisgah” as the Promised Land.
James Hall, a preacher and soldier traveling with General Griffith Rutherford’s 1776 expedition, is credited with connecting the dots to Moses and what he saw when he climbed the mount. Presbyterian minister Reverend George Newton, who lived and taught in neighboring Asheville, arrived on scene later and is credited with naming it Mt. Pisgah.
Open seasonally April 1 through October 31, Pisgah Inn is a scenic refuge in the mountains of western North Carolina. Rooms are cozy and inviting, their comfy bed, seating areas, stone fireplace and warming color palette upstaged by showstopping views outside oversized windows and from private porches.
Here is Mother Nature’s handiwork at its finest: mountain peaks swathed in forest greenery and fog-shrouded coves; pops of brilliant color compliments of masses of wild-growing rhododendrons, mountain laurel and flame azalea and the air fragrant with the fresh, Christmasy scent of balsam firs.
Hiking trails coax visitors into the hush of pristine lands called home by wildlife: deer, bear and other forest creatures. The onsite gift shop is stocked with items representing the Southern Appalachians, unique artisan-made goodies, as well as a variety of foods and wines – even apparel.
Pisgah Inn offers a casual atmosphere with fine dining flair – filet mignon, grilled salmon, walnut-crusted fresh mountain trout – enhanced by walls of windows. The wine list includes wines from North Carolina’s famed Yadkin Valley; the beer menu focuses on local craft beer.
Photos courtesy of Pisgah Inn: