I have no idea why I didn’t think of this before! Today’s Salvaged Getaway is to Linville, North Carolina: The Eseeola Lodge, where I worked for a summer during college. Linville is located in the northwest mountains of NC, near a bevy of cute little mountain towns (namely Valle Crucis, Banner Elk, Blowing Rock) and Boone (the home of my alma mater, Appalachian State University.)
The Eseeola Lodge
Linville was “discovered” in 1891 and an inn that was built soon hosted dancing, picnics and ox racing. In the years following it become a resort destination and the championship golf course was built in the mid 1900′s. Some of the original buildings (including the original inn and golf club) were destroyed by fires. Luckily the new buildings still have some of that mountain charm. In the 50′s Linville golf club became a private community, the member homes surround the golf course. I was told that membership is passed down from generation to generation and that it’s virtually impossible to become a member, I would assume that’s still the case. Luckily, guests can enjoy the property as well – I daydreamed about one day being a guest at Eseeola. Enjoying the formal evening dinner service, lunches at the grill and generally relaxing around the property, Its one of those places that feels a little stuck in the past, but in the best possible ways. My favorite memory is sitting on a hill overlooking the lake at the 4th of July picnic. Have you ever experienced fireworks in the mountains? The sound bounces off the mountains and the vibrations seem quite larger than life.
I didn’t have a boyfriend in college, which means that I missed out on some of the fine dining in the area. Those “fancy” restaurants were reserved for engagements, pre-formal dinners and anniversary celebrations. I’ve barely been back to high country in the last ten years, but on my next trip I have a short list of restaurants I’d want to try. It seems that many of the best high country restaurants are housed in adorable, old mountain cottages.
Artisanal, Crippen’s, Mast Farm Inn
And then there are the meals and restaurants that were my mainstays in college.
Daniel Boone Inn, Macado’s, Red Onion Cafe, Mellow Mushroom
What, you may ask, is there to do in the northwest mountains of North Carolina? First and foremost, enjoy nature. It’s incredibly beautiful, and I kick myself thinking of how I didn’t take advantage when living here. But, naturally, more my speed is antiquing and exploring of the aforementioned bevy of cute towns.
Moses Cone Center, Mile High Swinging Bridge
It’s funny to think of my college town as a destination. Yet, I’m getting a hankering to take BC to see this amazing part of the country.