About Our Victorian Bed and Breakfast in Asheville
Beaufort House Inn is an Asheville landmark, and one of the finest examples of a late 1800s home. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this exquisite property has received many awards over the years. It was featured in the NY Times as one of the top 5 places to stay in Asheville. It also has been featured in a variety of publications including National Geographic ‘Traveler,’ Southern Living, and Vegetarian Times publications. In 2010, we were mentioned in an article in GQ Magazine that described us as “stately, not stuffy,” which is just what we are trying to make happen.
The Heritage of the Inn
Historically named the Beaufort Lodge, this beautiful Queen Anne Victorian style house was built by Theodore Fulton Davidson, designed by architect A.L Melton, and completed in 1895 – in the same era as the Biltmore Estate. The tiger oak woodworking and moldings (now an extinct species) and the distinctively colored tile fireplaces in the Main House are all original appointments to the Beaufort Lodge.
Theodore Davidson was an Asheville lawyer who was both the Attorney General of North Carolina, and later the Mayor of Asheville. The Beaufort Lodge was built for his wife Sarah Lindsey Carter Davidson, and was the scene of many gala social events and political deliberations. Today, Beaufort House Inn stands as a testament to the style and workmanship created during the Biltmore Estate era at the turn of the century in Asheville.
Early History or the Area
In the late 1800s, Asheville society was in the process of shifting from that of a remote county seat, to a more cosmopolitan center of culture. This change was inspired by the vision of George Washington Vanderbilt, who was building what is now the elegant Biltmore Estate (completed around this same time in 1895).
Theodore Davidson’s career in politics and as mayor of Asheville spanned a key time in that history. After a long and successful career, Theodore F. Davidson died at the age of 86 on June 11, 1931. The property would remain in his family until 1942
In 1947, actor Charlton Heston and his wife Lydia moved into Beaufort Lodge where they took up residence for 6 months. Mr. Heston accepted an invitation as the Director of the Asheville Community Theater, where he saved up a “nest egg” that he used to travel to California to pursue his larger dreams. Charlton and Lydia rented a room from Laura Schnorrenberg, who then owned the house. Charlton and Lydia occupied what is known today as the Rose Room on the second floor of the main house.
Late in 1947, Laura sold the home to Mr. Hubert A. Haseltine and his wife to operate as the Haseltine School until 1949. The school merged with some others to become the Asheville Country Day School. Today, those schools have become Carolina Day School, a prestigious private school in the Asheville area.
Recent History of the Inn
In 1977, Dr. and Mrs. Lon McAnally bought the home and restored it to its Victorian elegance. In 1985, Lemac and Marjorie Hopkins purchased the property as a personal home after his retirement as Vice President of Chevron Oil Company. Mr. Hopkins worked diligently to get Beaufort Lodge on the National Register of Historic Places. The house was featured in National Geographic Traveler Magazine.
In 1993, Robert and Jacqueline Glasgow purchased the home, and over a three year period, turned it into a thriving bed and breakfast inn. During this time the original Carriage House was expanded into three Guest Cottages and an Innkeepers’ Quarters. Beaufort House Inn continued to thrive for another 14 years under the Glasgows’ ownership.
In August 2007, Jim and Christina Muth of Ellicott City, Maryland, fulfilled a desire to relocate to Asheville by purchasing the inn and assuming the role of Owners/Innkeepers. They continued the work of restoration, maintenance, and stewardship of this beautiful historic property until December 2019 when they retired.
GBX Group, LLC, an historic preservation investment company, now owns the inn and works closely with the Preservation Society of Asheville to continue to care for this historic property. Erica Thilges McClain, the Beaufort House’s long-time manager, continues to run the Inn with the warm and welcoming hospitality the Muths cultivated over the years.