Asheville – Tale of Two Cities

IvesterJackson Distinctive Properties & Blackstream International
are the exclusive affiliates of Christie’s International Real Estate in Asheville, North Carolina.

Asheville tells the tale of two cities by bringing together a historic mountain community with a modern urban downtown.

Land of the Sky

Nestled in a thermal valley of North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains is a city the locals call Asheville, or,  “Land of the Sky”. Poised at the confluence of the French Broad and Swannanoa Rivers – not far from where the Blue Ridge meet the Smoky Mountains – this verdant paradise is home to the oldest mountain range in the world. At an elevation of 2,500 feet, the moderate climate and four distinct seasons make this mountain paradise the perfect place to enjoy year-round.iStock_000051660082_XXXLarge

The Biltmore

Once part of the Cherokee Nation, the first the first Europeans came to the area in 1540, but it was not until 1784 that the history of Asheville as a town, began. A century later, at the height of the Gilded Age, George Vanderbilt’s vision brought the renowned talents of architect, Richard Morris Hunt, and landscape architect, Fredrick Law Ulmsted, to the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. Together, Hunt and Ulmsted transformed the rugged terrain along the French Broad River and created Biltmore House,
America’s largest home. Today, the 250-room chateau continues to attract guests to the area from around the world, just as it did when it was first opened to Vanderbilt’s guests on Christmas Day in 1895.Untitled-3

Roaring 20’s

In 1889, Asheville was the first city in North Carolina with electric rail streetcars. From the 1910s through the roaring 20s, Asheville grew to become the third largest city in the state, but that growth quickly halted with the crash of the stock market in 1929. At the time, Asheville had the largest municipal debt from infrastructure projects of any city in the US. It was not until the 1980’s, when that debt was finally repaid, that Asheville began to grow again. While slow to recover, the prior epoch ensured that the most complete collection of art deco buildings in North Carolina remained intact – the impetus for its future revival.

Where The Tale of Two Cities meets Tales of the City, the area boasts a literary history of triumph and tragedy as home to poet, Charles Sandburg, birthplace of novelist, Thomas Wolfe, and where F. Scott Fitzgerald retreated to the legendary Grove Park Inn to write in seclusion. While Armistead Maupin could easily have written any number of stories in Asheville’s progressive atmosphere, and Charles Dickens could have found inspiration in the cotswold-esque, Biltmore Village – the original township adjacent to the estate built to support the large workforce required to realize Vanderbilt’s grand endeavor – Wolfe never could have imagined the cultural jewel that Asheville would become.

Downtime

Where bluegrass licks meet the aristocratic culture of the past, Asheville offers the best food, accommodations, and recreation. The verdant mountainside of the National Parks and Forests that surround the city provide great trails for walking, hiking, and mountain biking. Not far from town, rushing waterfalls and scenic waterways are perfect for fishing, kayaking, and canoeing. The walkable urban core, public transportation, and any number of taxi or ride-share solutions provide easy access to the surrounding neighborhoods and main attractions.Untitled-1

From micro-breweries to farm-to-plate cuisine, diversity is the key to Asheville. The cosmopolitan city center with its sidewalk cafes, bistros, museums and architectural masterpieces has been referred to as, “The Paris of the South.” It’s renovated and rehabbed bohemian West side is now a vibrant socially-conscious hub for young creatives and families. Blending new with the old, many buildings and properties from the 30’s and 40’s that have been
transformed over the last decade. Bike shops, boutiques, pubs, and live performance venues on Haywood Street, the main thoroughfare, provide the best mix of urban and suburban amenities.

unspecified6Click here to learn more about our Asheville Office at 18 South Pack Square or VIEW OUR CURRENT ASHEVILLE LISTINGS.IJ-Blackstream-SideBySide-Grey


Colleen Ludington & First Book Charlotte

Presence in the Community

Colleen Ludington has a deep love of real estate and a passion for helping people buy and sell homes. With an eye towards staging and design, she can walk her clients through the process of turning a house into a home. She also has a love for helping children in her community.

0042 Ludington

That interest began while living in Nashville, TN in her late 20’s, when Colleen started spending her Saturday mornings volunteering with an organization called “Kids Klub.” During her 3 years of volunteer work, she was inspired to write a children’s book, which went on to become a best-seller.  She traveled the US speaking to kids groups, and donating books wherever she went.

First Book, Charlotte

When she relocated to Charlotte in 2004, she decided to harness her passion for serving under-resourced kids and began an internet search for how she could marry her love of reading and philanthropy.  She discovered First Book, a nationwide nonprofit that has provided more than 125 million books to children, and launched a local all-volunteer chapter in Charlotte in 2005.
First Book’s research bore out what she had seen first-hand in Nashville; in the average middle-income family, there are 13 books per child, yet in the average low-income neighborhood, there is only 1 book for every 300 children.
First Book LogoOver the last 11 years, Colleen has Chaired First Book-Charlotte,
advancing their mission of helping kids fall in love with reading through the ability to own their own new books.  The local chapter of First Book is the most successful in the nation, and Colleen now also Co-Chairs the National Advisory Council of First Book.

 Spring Gala

The 11th Annual Spring Gala will be held Friday, April 28th at The Peninsula Club.  This event, an upscale yet fun celebration of reading and the magic of books, raises the lion’s share of funding for the group. Because they are an all-volunteer board, 100% of the funds raised by First Book-Charlotte stay in the community and help to provide new books to local children.  At a cost of around $3 for a new book, sponsorships and donations go a long way towards changing the life of a child.
You can purchase tickets or become a corporate sponsor for the 11th annual Charlotte 2017 Spring Gala
Visit www.firstbookcharlotte.org for more information.
main room
3234 Bass Drive, Sherrills Ford
Learn more about Colleen Ludington and view her current listing @ 3234 Bass Drive.