©2015 – Third in a Series
As part of our recent week in the NC mountains, we sampled two of Asheville’s standout B&Bs thanks to the Asheville Bed & Breakfast Association.
Asia Bed and Breakfast Spa, a wonderful discovery, is an easy trek to downtown and all that funky Asheville offers, but more importantly, a serene getaway unlike most you’ll find labeled B&B.
The property accommodated us perfectly for two spa treatments and two nights in the Paris Room upstairs in the main house. There are five rooms available; others are the Artisan, Silk Route, Bohemian and Bali. Our room was comfortable and spacious with a two-person tub plus shower, two large comfy chairs, a fireplace and roomy bed with plush linens.
The Japanese-inspired grounds throughout set the tone even before you step inside, enticing you to stop, inhale, observe, appreciate. Asian influences are everywhere, from art on the walls to the simplistic, yet elegant layout of tea service amid an orchid plant and four types of fruit waters available daily. Coffee service features chopsticks for stirring in cream and sugar.
You are free and encouraged to do your own thing, and the friendly staff is always available to answer a question or book a treatment. For the latter, we sampled his and hers facials soon after check-in. Chrystel Mann transformed us – not only did our faces glow with the love and the Eminence products, but we felt the weight of travel quickly melt away. She also used her massage and reflexology skills to full effect.
The next day, our two-hour Couples Body Meltdown proved true to its name. Chrystel and Karen Hardison met us outside the couples room, located on the bottom floor of the two-story annex out back and flanked by the meditation garden.
Each masseuse used hand mitts to start the treatment with all-over exfoliation, employing just the right pressure. A shea butter wrap was heavenly, and for our relaxation, we chose lavender massage oil. A full 90 minutes was devoted to the thorough massage that also featured heavenly hot towels.
Innkeeper Doniel Winter said the best compliment is when guests fall asleep on the table. We didn’t disappoint him.
The meditation garden is nicely arranged, and Winter says he often sees guests doing yoga or tai chi amid the rocks and greenery. Off the garden is a Finnish sauna suite (the door locks for privacy) and cold shower, and we do mean cold – the perfect scrub/massage finale. We did the ritual as intended – several minutes in the sauna followed by the cold plunging shower, then back to the sauna. Inside the main house, there’s a European steam shower.
Breakfast is unlike at most B&Bs, as well. Rather than gather with other guests at a communal table, guests arrive at the main house and choose their dining spot. The enclosed front porch is most popular. Staff deliver a lovely breakfast spread via foldable TV table or alongside your seated spot. Breakfast is served ‘til 10 a.m. – perfect for those travelers who want to luxuriate by sleeping in. That’s another sign of success, said Winter, when his guests tell him they can never sleep in at home, but they manage to here.
He tells much more about the inn — for instance, the spa is only available to guests — in the accompanying video. He promises: “It’s like staying in a hotel, but it’s an entirely personal experience.
“People are wanting to experience something different, and they want to be around other people. Aside from coming and visiting Asheville, they want to have a personal connection in the two or three days they’re staying here. That’s the advantage of a B&B, I think.”
Special Fall Tour
Asheville Bed & Breakfast Association inns, including Asia B&B Spa, are offering their guests an exclusive Fall Farms and Artisans Tour Package available now through Nov. 15. We previewed the experience, and it’s going to be wonderful. Weekends are filling up quickly, thanks in part to this item in The New York Times, so make your reservations now by contacting a member inn or book online. Check availability at ashevillebba.com/our-inns/by-availability and check tour details at ashevillebba.com/abba-exclusives/.
If You’re Going: Asia Bed and Breakfast Spa, 128 Hillside St., Asheville, is currently ranked 10th of 41 B&Bs in Asheville on Trip Advisor. For more, visit ashevillespa.com or call 828.255.0051.
Reach the Asheville Bed & Breakfast Association at 828.250.0200 or visit ashevillebba.com/our-inns. For more on what to see and do in Asheville, visit www.exploreasheville.com.
Next in this Series: Our preview story on the exclusive Fall Farms and Artisans Tour.
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International and Luxury Travel Examiners J.S. Fletcher and spouse, Kathy M. Newbern, report on luxury destinations, spas and cruising around the globe. They are award-winning members of the Society of American Travel Writers and created YourNovel.com, their personalized romance novel business.