Vanderbilt-era Christmas traditions, menus and stories

Christmas celebrations in a Victorian mansion.

In the late 1880s, George W. Vanderbilt, then a young man of 25, came upon the perfect spot in North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains for a 250-room French Renaissance chateau to be built by his friend, architect Richard Morris Hunt. The great chateau would be called “Biltmore.” On Christmas Eve 1895, George and Edith Vanderbilt formally opened their doors for the first time to friends and family. Here you can discover their Victorian Christmas traditions  including some of the food they enjoyed during the holidays.