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Antisocial_Worker
09-18-2006, 09:54 PM
I present for your inspection a letter to the editor from my local paper. Tell me... can you read this and not hear the squeals and grunts of a gimme pig in the background? Yeah, Biltmore is expensive, but this letter just rubs me the wrong way.

From the Asheville Citizen-Times (09/18/06)

A ‘budget weekend’ for locals would endear Biltmore Estate to us

To the Editor:

I enjoyed reading your articles on the Biltmore Estate. Unfortunately, reading about the estate will be the closest I ever get to it. I live in Asheville and can't stomach the $42 entry fee. They would probably get more visitors if they halved that fee. Why not give discounts for locals? I have had 4 groups of visitors this year alone and may have taken them to the Biltmore but the combined entry fee alone would have equaled a week's food budget. I frequent the Starbucks outside the estate's main gate and when I ask tourists about their visit to the big house they unanimously agree-"nice house ,but not worth the entry fee."

Why not let us buy a ticket to the Biltmore house itself for $15 and if we want to see the winery then add another $15? Why not have a "free day" for all us Asheville peasants who live in the shadow of the estate's wall? How about a little more creativity and a bit of concern for the town in which you live? Until the Biltmore is a little more reasonable my guests will just get the "drive by" view from the freeway along with the choice of visiting the Biltmore or eating for a week.

G. Pig (name changed to protect the greedy)
Asheville

One-Fang
09-18-2006, 10:06 PM
LOL. Yeah, totally. Background? Nope, right there in the foreground. Gimme gimme gimme.

It would be nice if tourist traps offered a cheaper 'locals' rate. But why should they? The product/service is apparently worth $xx. If you want the product/service, pony up the $xx. Why should it matter where you live?

I think the first suggestion in the last paragraph is good though - separate fees for the house and winery. Those who would not choose to go the winery (like me) could see the lovely old estate for a bit less.

Antisocial_Worker
09-18-2006, 10:37 PM
The ironic thing is, Biltmore Estate really doesn't need any more visitors. This year, for the first time since it opened to the public in 1930, it cracked more than a million visitors in a year. For the past decade or so it's been averaging about 900,000 per year.

What bugs me most about this letter is this guy is forgetting that Biltmore, which is the largest house in America and which sits on 8,000 acres of gardens and parkland, does not receive a penny of funding from any government body. Not the city of Asheville, not the county of Buncombe, not the state of North Carolina or the feds. It's actually one of the largest tax-paying entities in the area, in fact, and it provides employment for thousands of area residents.

The place is filled with priceless art and treasures from around the world, and frankly, if someone's going to keep those 15th century tapestries, the Renoir paintings, and the library ceiling (which was taken from a Venetian palace) in tip-top condition, then someone's got to pony up.

What's more, the Biltmore gardens are home to extremely rare and unusual plants, including the only thriving grove of torreya taxifolia (a primitive conifer) in the world. Biltmore has been instrumental in trying to restore the American chestnut tree, and in excavating a prehistoric Connestee Indian village discovered on the property.

As much as they charge, I think they need the money for all this. I don't have the first problem with paying what they ask to get in, especially -- and the gimme pig conveniently leaves this out -- locals can upgrade a day pass to a yearly pass for about $40 more and can go each and every day for a year after if they so choose.

phillippbo
09-18-2006, 10:58 PM
Maybe I should write a letter to the Daily Dejector or the Nuisance and Disturber papers (Daily Reflector and News and Observer, for those who aren't from this area) complaining that I would love to visit Biltmore, but the 5.5 hour drive and the $42 entrance fee is too much, and prevents me from visiting. If they really want to get my money, they need to uproot the whole thing and move it "Down East" near Greenville, something within 20 miles of my house or so (I'm not unreasonable) and let me in for some pocket lint and an old paper clip. Until then, they've lost my business!

;)

ChanceNCinny
09-18-2006, 11:04 PM
You don't see people around here (Southern California) saying that kind of thing about Disneyland, Magic Mountain, Universal Studios, Sea World or the countless other attractions. Most people I know just get the annual pass to their favorite one and go as much as they want. If I was a local and wanted to visit it that much I would just cough up the $84 for a twelve month pass (according to the website thats the cost).

Kiwi
09-19-2006, 04:08 AM
I frequent the Starbucks

and shes complaining about prices....$42 is what 10 coffees at starbucks if your lucky......:eek:

Banrion
09-19-2006, 12:48 PM
From the description, it sounds as if the Biltmore Estate works like any major tourist attraction in the country. High rates for 1 day passes, but a season pass for the cost of less than 2 visits. That how the six flags near me is. 1 day adult ticket is around $56.00, but the season pass is $80.00. I agree on the gimme pig, and I am sure Biltmore Estate isn't really worried about her.

chainedbarista
09-19-2006, 02:48 PM
and shes complaining about prices....$42 is what 10 coffees at starbucks if your lucky......

maybe that's the real issue here; a visit there is potentially cutting into her starbuck's funds-i smell a conspiracy! :lol:

LostMyMind
09-19-2006, 03:10 PM
Wouldn't the dude have enough money to pay the "daily" rate for 10 visits, if he gave up starbucks for a week.

:runs from all the starbucks fanatics:

Luna
09-19-2006, 03:28 PM
and shes complaining about prices....$42 is what 10 coffees at starbucks if your lucky......:eek:

Hehe..I was thinking the same thing!

gundam40
09-19-2006, 04:20 PM
I don't know why people bother complaining about these things. If the rate is too high, DON'T GO!

And if your "suggestion" really is that good, and is beneficial to the House, then they'd have done it already... Dumbass :rolleyes:

Dips
09-19-2006, 04:46 PM
This sound like another version of "I'm going to boycott you until I can afford your prices!"

And the answer to that is "Yes. Of course you will."

:p

newfie
09-19-2006, 06:21 PM
Wow. If you can't afford it, don't go. Don't have a hissy about the prices being too high and expecting them to lower them for you. There are lots of places I would like to go, but I can't afford it. Im still here though. If I want it bad enough, I save up for it and make a special trip.

Becks
09-20-2006, 08:25 PM
Wow. If you can't afford it, don't go. Don't have a hissy about the prices being too high and expecting them to lower them for you. There are lots of places I would like to go, but I can't afford it. Im still here though. If I want it bad enough, I save up for it and make a special trip.

Same here. (I still don't get to go to many places...:( )

TheRoo
09-22-2006, 05:33 AM
I went to Vegas in April. One of my friends moved there last year, and she got all sorts of discounts for being a "local".