Living In WNC

Cedar Hill

Situated between Cashiers and Sapphire Valley, Cedar Hill is an upscale gated community offering its residents awe-inspiring views and the very best in luxury mountain living. Whether searching for the latest in elegant mountain construction or a very special lot to call your own, Cedar Hill will not disappoint. An easy hike from your backdoor will lead you to the natural splendor of waterfalls set amongst a backdrop of hardwoods. Be one with nature, but enjoy the modern conveniences of underground utilities available to all home sites and a short drive into town.

Residents of Cedar Hill have access to all of the amenities of nearby Wyndham Resort at Fairfield Sapphire Valley, including golf, swimming, tennis, fitness and much more (see Sapphire Communities for more information).

 

Trillium Links and Lake Club

True to its credo — "Where Families Belong" — Trillium is among the most exciting, family-friendly properties on beautiful Lake Glenville. Striking homes featuring Arts and Crafts and Adirondack style architecture line the community's streets, showcasing special characteristics such as stone and timber accents, poplar bark siding and exposed beams. Each home is designed to exist in harmony with the awesome show of nature that can be found throughout Trillium. The award-winning 18-hole championship golf course, designed by Morris Hatalsky, is as challenging as it is beautiful. Clinics and private lessons are available with the full-time pro on site. The less challenging par three Garden Golf course is a terrific amenity the entire family can enjoy without the worry of tee times and scorecards. A day of fishing in any one of Trillium's stocked ponds, picnicking at the Lakeside Pavilion or playing a game of croquet on the Arbor Lawn will bring new meaning to the word "carefree."

Set at the heart of the community, Trillium's outstanding clubhouse combines mountain laurel accents with dry stacked stoned for an inspired gathering place that gives the feel of luxury housed within an old, rustic lodge. The clubhouse is an integral part of life at Trillium, offering residents casual dining in the Grille Room overlooking the 18th fairway, a wraparound porch for world-class dining with a view, and an expansive lawn for hosting special community events on holidays like Easter, Fourth of July and Labor Day. Gourmet dining is also available at The Landings, set at the tip of Lake Glenville, with opportunities for a romantic view of the sunset and dinner by candlelight.

Apple Orchard Park is Trillium's popular fitness and wellness center, boasting three indoor clay tennis courts and state-of-the-art fitness equipment, as well as services like fitness classes and spa treatments. Central to it all lies Lake Glenville. Trillium has a fleet of boats available for rental, including canoes, kayaks, fishing boats, deck boats, runabouts and pontoons. Water ski equipment and other water sport items are also available to rent. A short drive to nearby Cashiers provides family members with a fun-filled day of shopping and strolling the streets of an historic resort village. There is no shortage to the number of adventures a family can have while living at Trillium.

 

Thanksgiving, Mountain Style

Thanksgiving on the Plateau is becoming a holiday tradition as more and more people are discovering the pleasures of food, family, and football at 3,500 feet. For others, it is the weekend that officially signals the end of the summer and fall seasons and an obvious time to fill the house or cabin with loved ones. It provides the warmth of a family gathering without all the stress that often comes with Christmas.
But for those of us who see nothing stress-free in preparing a delectable feast, there are ways to ease the burden. More and more local businesses stand ready to streamline the holiday with an array of delicious offerings that seem homemade but require little effort.
Robin Crawford, for example, the well-known proprietor of the Cashiers Farmer’s Market, will be offering everything from all-natural turkeys you prepare at home to multi-course à la carte meals you build from her considerable list of sides.  Typically, she says, she offers meals to serve four to six people and a customer may pick up a fully cooked turkey along with any number of sides, including a squash casserole, green beans, and “pilgrim mashed potatoes,” a recipe similar to twice-baked potatoes without the skin but with lots of butter. She can even provide the homemade gravy. All the traditional pies will be available, of course!  
While Thanksgiving marks the end of the season for the Farmer’s Market, they will stock garlands and greenery to usher in the Christmas holidays.  Some people, she says, will put a fall-colored bow on a green wreath and just change the ribbon to green or red as Christmas nears. She also carries a fun selection of yard decorations—turkeys and pumpkins mounted on wire to be stuck in the ground—and can provide simple centerpieces made from straw.
In Highlands, the Mountain Fresh Grocery at the bottom of Main Street offers a complete traditional dinner for six people, the centerpiece being a butter-basted turkey or spiced, glazed ham cooked Thanksgiving morning. The meal includes dressing, traditional green bean casserole, cranberry relish, Yukon gold mashed potatoes, turkey herb gravy, and homemade yeast rolls. For dessert, the market offers Granny Smith apple, pumpkin or pecan pie.
A new and welcome addition to Thanksgiving take-out this year is Sapphire Valley’s Library Restaurant and Bar. Executive Chef Johannes Klapdohr anticipates a traditional menu with a Southern accent or two,  such as collard greens and macaroni and cheese. He, too, will be preparing ham, and orders may be picked up on Thanksgiving morning.
Ingles is another helpful source, offering a fully-cooked turkey or ham dinner for the holidays. A variety of side dishes are available, including homestyle gravy, sweet potato casserole, broccoli and rice casserole, and Amish-style cole slaw.
If you fall somewhere in between doing dinner from scratch and carrying it home ready-made, the Plateau offers lots of help. The Spice and Tea Exchange in Highlands is stocking a wonderful assortment of seasonings to dial your cooking up a notch. Consider, for example, a turkey or ham herb rub. Manager Adison Harris also recommends a baker’s spice blend, a pumpkin pie spice blend, and an autumn harvest blend which intensify the flavors of fruit breads, soups, squash, and sweet potatoes. Another idea she suggests for a home celebration is a mulling mix spice blend that is delicious with apple juice or red wine.
Fresser’s in Highlands will have “everything from soup to nuts,” according to chef Debbie Grossman. Pick up an order of roasted butternut squash and chestnut bisque or a casserole of bourbon sweet potatoes, made, she assures, with excellent bourbon. She can help with the night before Thanksgiving as well, providing her legendary lasagna.
Save room for dessert, because the choices are staggering. Most all the sources listed above will have traditional pies available. Additionally, Whitney Henson, regional manager of Cream and Flutter in Slabtown, says   by Thanksgiving week, she will have the three favorites in her store: pumpkin and apple, of course, but also pecan, which comes in regular, chocolate, or bourbon flavors. The pies can be ordered with 24-48 hours’ notice and may be picked up from the “take and bake” line, which enables you to take the unbaked pie home to bake it in your own oven just like grandma might have done.
Another sublime source for homemade pie is Appalachian Harvest on Main Street in Highlands, where Kimberly Baldwin already has orders for more than thirty.  The pies, which are so heavy they require two hands to hold, are legendary for their organic and generous fruity fillings. Her jarred marmalades, fillings and jellies, which are also sold in Williams Sonoma and Whole Foods Market, include several which are perfect for Thanksgiving. She makes a rich cranberry relish and also recommends a homemade holiday pepper jelly, made from pecans and cranberry.
Of course, there is always the option of dining out, and the choices are enticing. Madison’s, at Old Edwards Inn in Highlands, will be offering a full-service dinner, as will Wolfgang’s, also in Highlands.
Wolfgang’s will serve dinner in a series of seatings, beginning at 11:30 a.m. and ending at 4:00 p.m. The menu features such favorites as shrimp and lobster bisque, traditional turkey or ham, as well as a slow-braised lamb shank with root vegetables.  
The Verandah, not to be outdone, will be serving an extensive buffet from noon to 6:00 p.m., featuring a “cold table” laden with shrimp and salads and a hot buffet serving the traditional turkey as well as “turducken,” made of boneless turkey, duck, and chicken held together with stuffing. An elaborate dessert bar will finish off the experience, including traditional pie as well as an assortment of cookies.
And so, like those Pilgrims hundreds of years ago, we gather together for what can only be called a magnificent mountain feast. ◊

Lake Glenville

The crown jewel of the Glenville community – at 3,500 feet above sea level – Lake Glenville is the highest lake east of the Mississippi. With a surface area of over 1,400 acres and 26 miles of shoreline, Lake Glenville draws visitors from all over the Southeast to its pristine waters and glorious scenery. The high elevation provides pleasant climates year round, as well as incredible views of the lake, mountains, forest and waterfalls that are common in the region. Whether fishing, boating or swimming in this extraordinary lake, once you set foot in Lake Glenville, gently stirring her glassy surface, you'll feel a stirring in your own heart. This feeling keeps visitors returning year after year, as they continue to build upon their special memories of days spent at the lake.

Lake Glenville real estate offers close proximity to the historic resort village of Cashiers, providing residents with an opportunity to shop and dine to their heart's content. Homes on Lake Glenville provide the best of both worlds – waterfront home combined with mountain home. A handful of Glenville communities provide a country club environment, all of which celebrate the natural beauty of the region.

 

Highlands, North Carolina

Highlands, North Carolina has served as a showcase for the change of seasons for many families in the Southeastern United States for well over a century. A caravan of cars drives through the historic Main Street district during the summer months to enjoy the mild temperatures of the high elevations, and during the fall months to gaze in awe at the show of colors as the leaves change on the hardwood trees that line the mountain range. Downtown Highlands is a collection of quaint inns, upscale shops and renowned eateries that serve as a draw for vacationers from nearby South Carolina and Georgia.

The collection of country clubs in the Highlands is as widely varied as the collection of lush foliage. Thoughtfully designed golf courses abound, coexisting beautifully with the natural splendor that is synonymous with the area. Many of the luxury cottages and mountain estates in the area complement the natural setting on which they are constructed, featuring heavy timber and stone accents and offering awe-inspiring views of the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains. Year round residents of Highlands live at an easier pace – they know when to pause and take a gander at a beautiful sunset or to stop and smell the wildflowers. We invite you to slow down long enough to experience the Highlands way of life.

 

Vero Beach to Asheville

Meet Elite Airways, the airline bringing weekend flight service between East Coast Central Florida and Western North Carolina. The airline originated to enhance the flying experience. With a goal to make your time flying more personal and hassle free, Elite Airways is bringing Western North Carolina and Florida travelers good news. With a new nonstop flight between Vero Beach Regional Airport (VRB) in Florida to Asheville Regional Airport (AVL) in North Carolina, residents and visitors now have the ability to travel between the two destinations Thursdays and Sundays. 
Elite airways prides itself on customer service. As a pet-friendly airline, they never charge change fees, and the first bag always flies free. Their goal is to provide a quality and memorable travel experience. 

The airline headquartered in Portland, Maine also offers service between the following cities:

Asheville, NC and Vero Beach, FL

Bimini, Bahamas and Melbourne, FL

Bimini, Bahamas and Newark, NJ

Halifax, Canada and Portland, ME

Melbourne, FL and Bimini, Bahamas

Melbourne, FL and Newark, NJ

Melbourne, FL and Portland, ME

Melbourne, FL and Sarasota/Bradenton, FL

Newark, NJ and Bimini, Bahamas

Newark, NJ and Melbourne, FL

Portland, ME and Halifax, Canada

Portland, ME and Melbourne, FL

Portland, ME and Sarasota/Bradenton, FL

Sarasota/Bradenton, FL and Melbourne, FL

Sarasota/Bradenton, FL and Portland, ME 

Vero Beach, FL - Asheville, NC

Vero Beach, FL - Newark, NJ

Community Spotlight: Falcon Ridge

 

A 290-acre limited development community in the Sapphire area of Western North Carolina, Falcon Ridge is designed to showcase luxury mountain homes in harmony with the mountain laurel, wildflowers, waterfalls, and wildlife that surrounds them. More than three-quarters of the community have been earmarked as green space, allowing for only 60 very special home sites within Falcon Ridge. At an elevation of 4,500 feet above sea level on Hogback Mountain, each home site allows for amazing views of the surrounding mountain range, the Sapphire Valley below and long range views stretching into parts of both North and South Carolina. Residents of Falcon Ridge enjoy mild temperatures year round, as well as a lovely three-acre meadow with community pavilion and outdoor bonfire ring on the property. Falcon Ridge homeowners are also granted access to the amenities of the Sapphire Valley Resort.

 

Community Spotlight: Bald Rock

Situated along the Eastern Continental Divide, bordered by the natural beauty of Panthertown Valley and adjacent to the prestigious Bald Rock community, The Divide at Bald Rock offers an eclectic blend of estate-sized home sites and cozy cabin lots. Encompassing 244 acres and set at elevations topping 4,500 feet above sea level, views from The Divide include cascading waterfalls, abundant foliage and awe-inspiring views of the mountains and valley floor. The Divide features an open-air pavilion for family and community gatherings, which includes a full kitchen and two stacked stone fireplaces. The equestrian center at Bald Rock is available to residents of The Divide, as are all of the amenities of the Sapphire Valley Resort, including golf, swimming, tennis and much more.

The Reach of Art: A Visit to the Bascom

Cross the covered wooden bridge just off Franklin Road in Highlands, and you will find yourself on the magical campus that is The Bascom.
Set on six lush acres of what was once Crane’s Horse Farm, this extraordinary center for the visual arts is a sensory treat for anyone who loves art.
You know you are somewhere special long before you walk through the door. To one’s right is the original horse barn which has been transformed into a ceramics center. The main building, designed by the Atlanta architectural firm of Lord Aeck Sargent, is composed of wood, glass, and stone to pay homage to the natural materials that are native to our part of the world.
A walking nature trail surrounds the campus, containing a variety of site-specific sculptures comfortably positioned among indigenous plants and flowers. An outdoor amphitheater, tiers defined by stone seating, is the perfect setting for weddings, classes, and guest lectures.
Like the warm hostess that she is, Teresa Osborn, meets me at the Center’s front door. As executive director, she quickly explains how she sees the Center’s three important missions: exhibition, education, and outreach. This is no hushed gallery of hands-off, “important” art—nor is it intended to be.
The exhibition aspect of the Center’s mission is everywhere you look, as the 30,000 square feet of space abound with remarkable pieces created by artists from the Southeast, many of whom call the Blue Ridge Mountains home. Oil paintings mix comfortably with photography and pottery, the occasional piece of primitive furniture and whimsical pieces like a room-size “tree” composed of discarded clothing. One can also find jewelry, basketry, and wood-turned vessels here. The collections are fluid so visitors can enjoy a totally unique experience each time they come.
A fun aspect of this art center is the opportunity for hands-on creativity. Check out the “smARTspace” loft on the third floor, and try any of many self-directed art activities. A “wishing tree” downstairs invites visitors to write their deepest desires on papers to hang from a tree. The wishes are as random as you would expect, from “I wish I was a horse” to “I wish I could destroy my computer and phone.” These two areas speak to Teresa’s deepest passion: that art be a unifier, accessible to all, regardless of income, ability, or anything else.
Education is unquestionably a big part of The Bascom’s mission as well. The Center offers artist residencies, fellowships and internships in ceramics, photography, sculpture and community, which is a teaching position involving outreach to all ages. Residencies range from two weeks to one year and afford artists housing, teaching opportunities, unlimited studio access, and the opportunity to sell their art.
The community at large is a huge focal part of the educational component, and an adult education calendar offers a palate-pleasing menu of everything from “Playing in the Clay” to “Highlands Landscape Photography.” In addition to after-school classes during the school year, area children (and visiting grandchildren) are invited to eight different art day camps in the summertime. Private lessons, too, are available for all ages through Art by Appointment.
“Outreach,” says Teresa, warming to a subject dear to her heart, “is a yearlong activity, diverse and widespread.” Area youth are served through school programs: the Boys and Girls Clubs, Big Brothers Big Sisters, and the Gordon Center for Children, to name just a few. The needs of our adult community are addressed through programs like those at Cashiers and Jackson County Senior Centers, the Center for Life Enrichment, the Chestnut Hill retirement community, and the Eckerd Living Center.
It is no small feat that admission to this visual feast is free. Thanks to year-long sponsors, such as Delta and The Chaparral Foundation, The Bascom is accessible to everyone. A robust membership lends further support, as do various sponsors of individual exhibits.
The vision for this Center began in the 1980s, when Watson Barratt’s estate made possible an exhibition space in the Hudson Library. Proceeds from the sale of his family home on Satulah Mountain founded The Bascom, which honors the maiden name of his wife, Louise Bascom Barratt. Although he died in 1962 when Highlands was still a village, his belief in the need for a permanent gallery was prescient. Today, more than 20,000 individuals visit The Bascom each year, and that does not include all those who learn and create at the Center, or the thousands of people who are enriched through the outreach programs.
A centerpiece of Teresa’s delightful, art-cluttered office, is a charming piece of decoupage, teeming with buttons and ribbons and miniatures, created by a gentleman who struggled with developmental challenges. His family, she says, was stunned and thrilled to see how much joy he gleaned from the compilation of this masterpiece, and she keeps it in a place of honor to remind her always, of the life-changing possibilities of art.
The Bascom’s ever-growing impact in the community is a living testament to Watson Barratt’s foresight and a gift to all of us who call these mountains home.