6 Great Historical Site Businesses

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Biltmore House & Gardens | A Home and a Whole Lot More

Asheville, North Carolina, is home to a segment of the Great Smoky Mountains and a lush family-run estate known as Biltmore House & Gardens that also happens to be one of the largest employers in Buncombe County. George Washington Vanderbilt, progeny of the elite Vanderbilt clan, built this 250-room manor as his private residence in 1898. In 1930, his enterprising daughter Cornelia Cecil opened up the sprawling 125,000-acre estate for limited tours. Today, Biltmore employs almost 2,000 people and hosts more than one million visitors annually. The Biltmore also features gardens, a winery, shopping, and dining. Biltmore welcomes visitors from all ages and regions, but when it comes to marketing, "we target women 35 to 65, generally speaking," says Donnelly.