Relive Hallmark's "A Biltmore Christmas" during your holiday trip to Asheville

A Biltmore Christmas Hallmark Poster

Hallmark Channel’s upcoming holiday movie, A Biltmore Christmas—premiering on the Hallmark Channel Sunday, November 26—is a journey back in time to the 1940s at Biltmore Estate, the historic Asheville home of entrepreneur George W. Vanderbilt and his family.

The movie centers on Lucy Hardgrove, a screenwriter played by Bethany Joy Lenz, who is tasked with rewriting a classic holiday film, His Merry Wife!. During her research at Biltmore, she stumbles upon an hourglass that transports her to the 1947 film set, leading to unexpected friendships. But her presence in the past sets off a chain of events that put the production in jeopardy.

Fans can follow in the footsteps of these indelible Hallmark characters with a visit to Asheville this holiday season. Check out this list of where they filmed and see the sights of the movie through your own eyes!

Christmas at BiltmoreDiscover Movie Magic at Biltmore

During the movie's 15-day shoot, Hallmark spent 13 days at Biltmore Estate. Nine rooms inside Biltmore House were used for filming: The Library, Tapestry Gallery, Main Hallway, Staircase Hall, Vestibule, Winter Garden, Banquet Hall, the corridor around the Winter Garden, and the corridor behind the Banquet Hall. Four of those nine rooms were decorated with a 1940s theme.

Here’s a little behind-the-scenes history about these rooms and spaces!

The Library

In the movie, Lucy encounters the mystical hourglass in the Biltmore House Library, and in real life, a trip to the spacious and impressive room is a true journey back in time. Most of the books George Vanderbilt collected were sent to one of the great bookbinders of the period, such as Riviere, Stikeman, Lortic, or David.  A few months later, they would be returned beautifully bound in Moroccan leather, with gilt lettering and decoration, to be placed on the shelves of the Biltmore House Library. By the time of his death, George Vanderbilt collected more than 23,000 volumes including a full set of James Audubon’s The Birds of America and The Quadrupeds of America.

The Biltmore Library Holiday

Photo credit: The Biltmore Company

The Staircase Hall

Inspired by the staircase at the Chateau de Blois in the Loire Valley, Biltmore’s grand staircase was built using counterbalance and is a marvel of physics. The weight of each solid limestone slab step is offset by the weight of the wall bearing down. During the construction of Biltmore House, around 10 million pounds of limestone was used.

The Banquet Hall

The largest and arguably most impressive room at Biltmore House is the 70-foot high Banquet Hall. It includes a massive triple fireplace and a 1916 Skinner pipe organ. The dinner table seats 38 with plenty of space for additional small tables. The Flemish tapestries that line the walls date back to the 1500s.

Biltmore Banquet Hall

Photo credit: The Biltmore Company

The Main Hallway

George Vanderbilt officially opened Biltmore to family and friends in 1895, and many experienced the incredible home for the first time during a Christmas Eve celebration. The Main Hallway is the access point to the four acres of floor space, including 35 bedrooms, 43 bathrooms and 65 fireplaces.

Tapestry Gallery

The Tapestry Gallery is the longest room in Biltmore House. It was designed to showcase part of a set of tapestries known as The Triumph of the Seven Virtues. Woven from wool and silk in Flanders (now part of Belgium) between 1525–1535, these tapestries illustrate how the seven virtues − faith, prudence, charity, chastity, temperance, fortitude, and justice − would always prevail over vice.

Biltmore Tapestry Gallery Holiday

Photo credit: The Biltmore Company

The Vestibule

Guests of the Vanderbilts were greeted in the Vestibule, the entranceway to the 250-room mansion that was always decorated to fit the theme of the season. That tradition still stands today as visitors enter the house.

The Winter Garden

Interesting fact: the glass-roofed Winter Garden was not included in the original architectural sketches of Biltmore House. It was later added as plans were finalized. The Winter Garden is now one of the first rooms you’ll experience during a tour of the historic home.

Filmed at Biltmore in Asheville, N.C., Lucy Hardgrove (played by Bethany Joy Lenz) ponders a time-traveling hourglass in “A Biltmore Christmas,” premiering Nov. 26 on Hallmark Channel. Image Credit: 2023 Hallmark Media/Photographer David Scott Holloway.

Photo Credit: 2023 Hallmark Media/Photographer David Scott Holloway.

Other fun “A Biltmore Christmas” Facts

*Info provided by Biltmore Estate

  • Eight vintage cars were used during the filming of A Biltmore Christmas

  • 200 yards of artificial snow were used.

  • 300 Asheville-area locals were hired as extras in the movie.

  • Over 8,000 people submitted applications online to be cast as extras, which Hallmark producers said is the most they’ve ever received.

  • Two exterior locations directly attached to Biltmore House were used for filming scenes: The Loggia and the Library Terrace.

  • Four rooms at The Inn on Biltmore Estate were used as film sets: The Lobby, the Library Lounge, and two guest rooms.

  • 11 costumes were worn by star Bethany Joy Lenz in A Biltmore Christmas. Four of them were 1940s-era costumes. Of the collection of 1940s looks costume designer Keith Nielsen created for Lenz’s character Lucy Hardgrove, Lucy’s Finale Ballgown is perhaps the most dramatic. Nielsen sourced an original Carolina Herrera design specifically for its fabric reminiscent of men’s tie patterns of the era. Modifications included a gathered bust that drapes around the back and the addition of a tiered tulle underlayer. Lucy’s necklace is an original 1930s Czech crystal from the collection of Nielsen. This costume will be on display at The Inn on Biltmore Estate throughout the holidays.

Biltmore Christmas

Photo Credit: 2023 Hallmark Media/Photographer David Scott Holloway.

Take a Tour at Biltmore Estate

Biltmore will offer day tours (Nov. 3-Jan.7), as well as Candlelight Christmas Evenings tours (through Jan. 6) when the Christmas ambiance will be set with soft candlelight, lit fireplaces, live orchestral music and other surprises to set the scene.

The tour takes guests through the Biltmore Banquet Room, where the stars of A Biltmore Christmas play the piano in front of the grand fireplaces. It’s also where Biltmore displays its nearly 35-foot-tall Christmas tree, which will be raised on Nov. 1.

Where else did Hallmark film around Asheville?

Antidote at Chemist Spirits

Located in the South Slope of downtown Asheville, Antidote offers the perfect space for an old-timey movie setting. With three stories of early 1900s apothecary style and aesthetics, Antidote is known for its craft cocktail selection and cozy atmosphere, and now, for its special appearance in A Biltmore Christmas.

Man making a gin drink at Antidote

A Biltmore Christmas Summary

Lucy Hardgrove (Joy Lenz) is a screenwriter who lands the job of a lifetime when she’s hired to write the script for a remake of the beloved holiday movie, His Merry Wife! 

When the head of the studio isn’t satisfied with the ending Lucy wrote, he sends her to Biltmore Estate for research and inspiration. After knocking over a mysterious hourglass, Lucy finds herself transported through time to the set of the original film where she meets movie star Jack Huston, played by Kristoffer Polaha.

Her sudden appearance sets off a chain of events that threatens the production and may even alter the future! Before she can return to her time, Lucy attempts to correct her mistakes, but she struggles with the fact that she would have to leave Jack, who may be her soulmate.

A Biltmore Christmas premieres on the Hallmark Channel Sunday, November 26.

Updated November 27, 2023