May 29, 2009

Honoring Father's Day @ Carolina Mornings

Father's Day will be honored @ Carolina Mornings
for the entire month of JUNE!

How? Thank you for asking.

We will be celebrating Fathers, Uncles, Grandpas, Sons and Husbands by giving them the gift of experience! How many men need more ties, shirts, mugs? Do the men in your life really want more "things"?

Or said in another way, How many men ever say:
"you know, I really have enough time to play golf or to go on a whitewater rafting trip".

Well at Carolina Mornings, Asheville's exclusive Mountain Discovery Pass (MDP) gives our Men (women and children)
FREE golf, rafting on the French Broad River, cruises on Lake Lure and Trolley Tours around Asheville.

So imagine giving the man in your life a day to himself to play golf while you spend the day shopping downtown in Asheville's boutiques and unique galleries (unless you too want to join in the golf - Why not)?

Staying at one of our mountain vacation getaways is always a wonderful experience. Add free activities, good food and company and VOILA: A delightful, one of a kind gift is wrapped in a weekend to cherish for years to come!

May 24, 2009

List your unusual or unique amentiy in a vacation home

Unusual and Unique
Last week, Larry posted the blog about Wilderness Haven, our one and only vacation rental with the private putting green in the back yard. Since the inception of that project, I began to wonder: What other features have owners of vacation rentals have included to lure guests to their properties?

Of course there are the fancy, ultra luxurious vacation homes of the rich and famous which boast trillions of square footage, lavish furnishings and other exquisite touches. I am not referring to this cohort of vacation homes . I am interested in mainstream, main street vacation rental properties that cater to the rest of us making less than 7 figure incomes.

So I am calling on all second home owners with vacation rentals, property managers or to the traveling public, please let me know what unusual, different or unique items or amenities are found in vacation properties. At Carolina Mornings, the putting green tops my list so far.

We also have a cabin called Elkhorn, located in Asheville that boasts a sauna! Not the ubiquitous hot tub, but just a sauna. I would classify these two as unique!

Please send me your discoveries!

Why Use Carolina Mornings? Reason #2 Honesty - Part 1

Honesty is the best policy. Most of us were raised to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. Well at least in my family, we all shared our opinions sometimes to the detriment of going a bit too far and hurting some one's feelings. For me personally, I am at the age that I have trouble remembering anything minutiae to events that transpired yesterday. Luckily at Carolina Mornings, we are honest and straightforward and this makes our professional lives simple!
So you wonder: "yeah, most business' operate this away (except for the Bush Cheney administration), what else is new?".
Well unlike the vacation rentals on the beaches, where we all understand where oceanfront, ocean view, 3rd row, etc.... is located, it is far different when getting away to the mountains. Representing vacation homes in the Asheville area takes a bit more time and energy. Did you realize that homes can be built on a precipice? Only able to reach homes on a one lane, gravel, serpentine-like, 45 degree angle road? Yeah, it is true. I am always in disbelief when considering all of the construction crews, trucks, materials schlepping up and down these crazy "roads".

Okay, so not all of our rentals are on a mountain top. This leads me to my point. We at Carolina Mornings want to make sure that we do not send the Fainthearted Family, from Flatcounty, Florida up to the aforementioned vacation rental. While Mr. Fainthearted may consider this rental, the Mrs. certainly does not want to even venture this idea. The last thing that our staff wants to hear on Friday night, a late check-in at 11 PM, is a call from the Fainthearted Family, telling us that they are unable to get to their getaway because the road is too curvy and narrow.
So to make a long story short, we tell it like it is! No holds barred!

May 21, 2009

Memorial Day weekend at Biltmore Estate

From Ashley Jenkins, our Biltmore representative...

Saturday and Sunday are designated timed entry dates and each guest will need to stop by the white tent in front of Biltmore House to obtain a time to enter the house. Also, make note that the admissions gate is now opening at 8:30am due to guest demand.

Looking for live music and entertainment this weekend? Send them on over to visit the Arbor Grill at the Winery where they can sample from a special tapas menu, enjoy great local beer and Biltmore wine, and listen to live music. Arbor Grill is open from noon until 8pm with live music from 4pm-close.

Guests will also be interested in afternoon activities at the River Bend Farm with live music, dance demonstrations, and storytelling on Saturday, Sunday, and Monday. Plus don’t forget about the Farmyard demos and craft demonstrations. Children will enjoy the complimentary vintage games and crafts.

May 20, 2009

Family and Golfer Haven

Wilderness Haven, one of Carolina Mornings' newest properties, features its own professionally installed putting green.

Carolina Mornings is excited to introduce Wilderness Haven, a new vacation home with a unique feature...a professionally installed miniature putting green. When discussing options for the swimming pool which had been filled in and turned into a garden, the owners and family members hit on the idea of turning it into a putting green. Carolina Mornings thought it was a great idea and a low maintenance way to offer a unique amenity for guests to enjoy.

In addition to the putting green, this circa 1970's log home recently completed some extensive remodeling, specifically with vacationers' comfort and entertainment in mind. Wilderness Haven includes a new jacuzzi in the master bathroom, 3 big screen TVs throughout the home, dual heating/air systems for comfort control on each floor, a second shower on the main level and a fooze ball game table in the basement. Amenities also include Satellite TV and wireless internet to keep you up-to-date and in-touch while still enjoying your vacation retreat. To view more details and photos of this cabin or to reserve now, click here.

May 16, 2009

Why Use Carolina Mornings?

Ok, Why use a vacation rental management company when you can rent an accommodation directly from an owner? We are one stop shopping.
Let me explain..
Reason #1 Matchmaker

Sure you can go through the plethora of individual properties but do you really want to do that? Is your time not worth more than that?

Our Vacation Specialists are top notch in matching up our guests' needs to our vacation rentals. When one travels on vacation, the vacationer has different goals, objectives, budgets etc. You get the picture. Our Vacation Specialist listen to our customers and provide them with a choice of different rentals that will meet their needs. At Carolina Mornings, we do not work on individual commissions, we do not receive more money if we rent one property over another, we like to think of ourselves as an equal opportunity company.
So why would a family, couple, a group of friends, wade through individual listings when they can email, chat online or call our office and tell us what their needs are and let us do our work for our vacationers?
Matchmaker, Matchmaker make me a match, find me a find, catch me a catch.....

Coming next:
Reason # 2 Honesty

Vacation Renters' Paradise

The Boston Globe's Sunday magazine article Bargains in Paradise sites that the Cape Code rental market is "off to a slow start" this year. The article goes on to site that fly to destinations are taking a huge hit this year and presenting with big discounts. The drive to destinations are not feeling the same pain and in some cases not even offering any discounts.

Here in Asheville, we are seeing a decrease of the number of reservations and the stays are shorter then last year. And as the Boston Globe's article even suggests, and we at Carolina Mornings are witnessing first hand: more vacationers are looking for deals and freebies.

I would like to say this is not so, but I cannot tell a lie. So how have we responded to traveling public? or as Janet Jackson sang "What Have You Done For Me Lately?"

Some of our owners are offering amazing specials and as a company we have offered some free amenities such as $50 gift certificates to Zambra's Restaurant honoring the moms for the month of May. But regardless of any of these specials, we have also added more value and Freebies to our vacation rentals. Our area's one and only Asheville's Mountain Discovery Pass offers FREE activities: Whitewater Rafting, Trolley Tours, Golf, Lake Lure Cruise Tours. Now with each rental accommodation, our guests basically get close to $100 of free activities for each night of their stay. You gotta admit, where else can you rent a vacation rental and as a bonus receive FREE rafting? Free Trolley Tours? Golf? Really now? I think this is amazing! Don't you?

May 14, 2009

ONE night stays are back! At adorable Dogwood Studio

For the month of May, enjoy a ONE night stay at Dogwood Studio. You'll get your own private home-away-from-home, for a price comparable to local hotel rooms. Complimentary continental breakfast is included with your stay!
See owner specials below.

~Spring Specials~

ONE NIGHT STAY available for $141 the month of May, excluding Memorial Day Weekend.
Stay TWO nights and get your THIRD night for ONLY $11!

Specials CANNOT be combined.
Valid for new reservations booked after May 1, 2009 for stays May 1, 2009-May 31, 2009, excluding holidays.
Please call a Vacation Specialist to take advantage of these amazing savings, as they are not reflected in our online reservation system.

May 13, 2009

Carolina Mornings guests get extended hours at Biltmore Estate

Great news from our Biltmore Representative, Ashley Jenkins! Guests staying with Carolina Mornings, who purchase their Biltmore tickets through us, have been given extended gate access privileges!

Our guests can enter the estate between 9:00am- 6:00pm, 2 hours after the admissions gate has already closed to regular guests (4:00pm). Keep in mind that Biltmore House front door will still close at 4:30pm.

Plus, don’t forget that your tickets are still valid for two consecutive days!
You can also make evening dining reservations which will allow you access onto property for your dining experience. Reservations can be made by calling 866-779-6293. Reservation times will vary, and may extend beyond the 6:00pm gate access.

New rooms are open at Biltmore Estate this Spring, and Festival of Flowers ends THIS weekend. Call us to book your vacation rental and grab some extended hours, Festival of Flowers, valid for 2 consecutive days Biltmore tickets. Or save with our entire Festival Package!

May 12, 2009

NC welcome centers help celebrate tourism!

Yesterday began the kick-off of travel and tourism celebrations across North Carolina, as we stop to appreciate the impact tourism has on our state and local economies. Today is the official state Tour and Travel Day, with all day events in downtown Raleigh. Welcome centers across the state plan to have food and beverages and all day events May 13-15. Stop by one near you (see below)!

From CarolinaNewsWire:

North Carolina Celebrates Tourism’s Impact With Tour and Travel Day and National Tour and Travel Week

RALEIGH, N.C. -- Gov. Beverly Perdue will proclaim Tuesday, May 12, 2009 as Tour and Travel Day celebrating travel and tourism as a major state industry that is vital to the economic stability and growth of North Carolina. Tour and Travel Day is celebrated as part of National Tour and Travel Week.

A full-day of events is scheduled in Raleigh on May 12 and at North Carolina State Welcome Centers throughout the state May 11-15 to celebrate North Carolina’s tourism industry and to create better awareness of the industry’s contribution to North Carolina’s economy.

As part of Tour and Travel Day in Raleigh, the Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority presents a Pit Crew Challenge with state legislators as well as NASCAR displays and activities between the N.C. Museums of History and Natural Sciences. At noon, state legislators will face off in a House vs. Senate Pit Crew Challenge to see which team is faster at changing the tires on a real NASCAR race car.

Also included in Tourism Day, organizations from around the state will have informational booths located in the N.C. Legislative Building from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The N.C. Travel Industry Association (NCTIA) is coordinating exhibit booths that provide an opportunity for lawmakers to meet tourism industry officials and learn about the positive impact of the industry.

2009 Travel and Tourism Day
Welcome Center Celebrations

I-26 East, Polk County 9 a.m. - 2 p.m.
I-77 North, Surry County 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.

I-95 North, Northampton County 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.

I-26 West, Madison County 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.
I-77 South, Mecklenburg County 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.
I-85 South, Cleveland County 9 a.m. - 2 p.m.
I-85 North, Warren County 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.
I-95 South, Robeson County 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Tourism Facts:
  • Travel in North Carolina generated more than $16.5 billion in tourism-related expenditures in 2007. Figures for 2008 will be released at the event.
  • The tourism industry directly employs more than 190,000 North Carolinians with a payroll of $4.2 billion.
  • Tourism in North Carolina generates more than $1.3 billion in state and local tax revenue.
  • Visitor spending in North Carolina has increased 27.3 percent while state and local tax revenue is up 20.7 percent over the last five years.
National Travel Facts

Travel and tourism is one of America’s largest industries, with $740 billion in direct travel expenditures.

National Tour and Travel Week is an annual event commemorated by states, cities and organizations across the nation. National Tour and Travel Week was first established by Congress in 1983 to increase awareness of the travel and tourism industry's economic, social, and cultural contributions to the United States. The public knows about tourism’s direct impact on businesses like attractions, hotels and restaurants. But less well known is the indirect economic impact of tourism on the businesses that keep attractions, hotels and restaurants running—businesses such as hardware stores, carpet and window distributors and manufacturers, plumbing and construction companies. When tourists come to North Carolina, businesses and citizens win.

For more information on events at North Carolina Welcome Centers throughout the state, go to

Media Contact:
Wit Tuttell, NC Division of Tourism, Film and Sports Development
(919) 733-7420,

May 5, 2009

Vote Asheville As Your Favorite Beer City!!

Well, you can vote anyway you like.

Apparently it is neck and neck (bottle that is) between Portland, OR and Asheville, NC... Personally, I think for such as small town, Portland is 8 times larger in population than Asheville and one would expect Portland would have 8 times more breweries. However, this is not the case. Asheville's population is about 12% of Portland's and in essence, for every 3k persons there is one Brew Craft Outlets compared to 12K persons in Portland..

More succinctly: Asheville has the highest amount of micro-breweries per capita than any other city in United States
How cool is that?
Go click here to vote your favorite beer city...

Vacations and Value Added Benefits

Take Mom out for some outdoor adventure! Along with our Mother's Day Specials, every reservation will still get FREE daily activities. Yes, every day you can play a round of golf, rafting on the French Broad River and trolley tours all for Free! Yes Zippo, Nada, Rien, Nothing-well except you do need to book a vacation rental with us. Small detail, but nonetheless a great giveaway. This is what we call value added to your accommodations. Nowhere else in the Asheville Mountain area can you receive such amazing gifts. We are not talking $5 or $10 off these activities, we are saying "one free admission for each of these every night of your stay". I think this is awesome and so proud to have the Mountain Discovery Pass available for all of our guests! And by the way, even if your mother is not around this weekend, you can still come and go out and play with Mom in mind.

Mother's Day at Mountain Air Country Club

Carolina Mornings has a great property at Mountain Air Country Club. The condo is within walking distance of many indoor and outdoor attractions, including our 18-hole championship golf course, hiking and mountain biking trails, or soft surface tennis courts and nearby ski slopes. The club has a heated pool open the months of May through October.

~Mother's Day Weekend at Mountain Air CC~
$35 Gift Certificate available for dining at the Clubhouse!

Friday, May 8
Spa Chautauqua Indulgences

Saturday, May 9
Citizen Science: All About Bluebirds
Spa Chautauqua Indulgences
Dad and Me Craft Workshop
Birding Basics: Birding By Ear

Sunday, May 10
Mother's Day Luncheon
Spa Chautauqua Indulgences

Mountain Air CC Events Calendar
More info on Mountain Air Country Club

May 4, 2009

New web site feature! And don't miss saving on a great Mother's Day getaway

We're happy to have added a new shopping cart feature to our Carolina Mornings reservation web site. We're calling it your "suitcase" - collect your favored vacation rentals to view and compare side-by-side, send to travel companions, and save your list for later. We hope this will improve the online experience for our prospective guests!

It definitely isn't too late to book a last minute Mother's Day getaway to Asheville or the surrounding mountains. Make this a year's gift one Mom will really remember. Our economically friendly vacations and value packages will help your wallet and help her de-stress from the every day. Save on a Mother's Day splurge with us. See the web site for our available properties, and give our vacation specialists a call at 1.800.770.9055.