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‘Downton Abbey’ exhibit opens just in time for the holidays at Biltmore
Monday, 02 December 2019 22:31
Biltmore Estate 


Just in time for the holiday season, “Downton Abbey: The Exhibition” opened Nov. 8 at Biltmore and will remain on view through April 7, 2020. 

The immersive exhibition offers a chance to relive the story of Carnival Films’ beloved television series – complete with set recreations, exclusive multimedia elements, and an up-close look at more than 50 official costumes – while experiencing the real life story behind the Gilded Age estate at Biltmore.

 Showcased across two locations at Biltmore, the exhibition transports guests on an incredible journey through the grand home of Downton Abbey, providing an inside look into the world of the Crawley family and those that served them below stairs. The exhibition also provides a fascinating look at the post-Edwardian era in which the popular TV series was set and insight into the remarkable events that shaped the world, such as World War I.

 At Biltmore’s Amherst, guests can walk through some of the television series’ most recognizable sets, including Mrs. Patmore’s kitchen, the family’s glamorous dining room, Carson’s pantry, and the gossip-fueled servants’ quarters.

Never-before-seen multimedia elements and artifacts will immerse guests in the social history, culture and memorable moments from the show. Audio guides are also available for purchase to supplement tours through Biltmore’s Amherst. 

 In a second location, Biltmore Legacy in Antler Hill Village, the exhibition experience continues with a display of more than 50 costumes from the series’ six season run, as worn by actors, such as Michelle Dockery, Hugh Bonneville and Dame Maggie Smith. 

Guests will also get to view official costumes from the movie, as worn by the Royal Family. 

 “Downton Abbey: The Exhibition” is brought to Biltmore by NBCUniversal and Imagine Exhibitions. Biltmore marks the fourth stop on the exhibition’s U.S. tour, which has received wide critical acclaim.

The exhibition made its U.S. debut in New York City in November 2017, where it was hailed by The New York Times as “a cleverly immersive experience mounted with the same exacting care as the show itself.” The exhibition has since completed successful runs in Boston and West Palm Beach.

Downtown AVL’s Benne listed as one of best U.S. eateries
Monday, 02 December 2019 22:02

From Staff Reports

Benne on Eagle, located at 35 Eagle St. in downtown Asheville, recently was ranked No. 5 on Esquire magazine’s listing of the “Best New Restaurants in America.”

The list was composed by Jeff Gordinier, Esquire’s food & drinks editor, who spent the last year looking for the best food, drinks and back-stories in the United States.

He ended up ranking his 22 favorite restaurants.

Gordinier praised John Fleer, Benne’s executive chef, as an “Asheville luminary;” and Ashleigh Shanti, Benne’s chef de cuisine, as a “rising star.”

Benne is listed by Esquire among some of the nation’s best and busiest restaurants, including Seven Reasons in Washington, D.C., and Wayan in the Nolita neighborhood of Manhattan.

Regarding Benne, Gordinier wrote, “You’re likely to come across words like ‘ogbono’ and ‘egusi’ on the menu at Benne on Eagle, and that’s because it celebrates the debt that Appalachian food owes to African cuisine. 

“But with rising star Ashleigh Shanti working side by side in the kitchen with Asheville luminary John Fleer, the history lesson happens to be delicious.”

According to a Nov. 15 report in the Asheville Citizen Times, “Fleer created his third Asheville restaurant (Benne on Eagle) to pay home to the African-American history of The Block, the neighborhood surrounding Benne.”



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