When baby boomers share notes about potential retirement towns, chances are that Asheville will be the place most frequently mentioned. Asheville is a prosperous small city with a population 92,452 as of 2018. (260,000 in Buncombe County) in the Blue Ridge mountains of western North Carolina. Because of its charming environment and mild weather it has long been a desirable retirement community – from the rich and famous to ordinary people in quest of beautiful environment. The Vanderbilts built an enormous estate near here, the Biltmore Estate, which is the largest private residence in America with 250 rooms. Frederick Law Olmstead designed its famous gardens. For more information see our mini-guide to Asheville.
Walking around in downtown Asheville is a pleasure. It has a great collection of art deco architecture, antique stores, art galleries, and boutiques. Those who prefer the outdoor cafe or coffee house setting will enjoy its many cafes. The people are friendly. Asheville's people range from artists and musicians to corporate executives, merchants and entrepreneurs. It is easy to park on street or on a parking deck, then stroll through the streets.
Watch this short Youtube Video on Asheville as prepared by AshevilleNCMeetings.com
There are a number of condos downtown as well as homes further out. Montford, Chesnut Hill, Grove Park, Biltmore Village, and Albemarle Park have been named historic districts. The area is so popular that developers far from Asheville put Asheville or Biltmore in their community name. Many active communities are built around golf, lakes, or mountain settings (see link at left).
Prices can be very different depending on the neighborhood. The median home value in the Asheville region in early 2020 was $303,814, according to Zillow, with tremendous variability within that.
What is special about Asheville
Asheville is a small city bursting with vitality. All ages of people are on the streets - great restaurants and shops abound in the walkable and beautiful downtown. New construction is everywhere. Wide range of upscale housing opportunities for seniors, from condos downtown to dozens of active adult communities in the area. Interesting, walkable and dynamic downtown. Mild climate year round. Blue Ridge Mountains and Parkway, Biltmore Estate, tremendous cultural opportunities.
What is not special about Asheville
There is lot traffic in the summer, over development is coming, and winters are cooler than in eastern North Carolina
Who will like retirement in Asheville
People of every description live in Asheville, including many young professionals. Retirees looking for the year round good are moving in in significant numbers. Here is a link to an interesting article from CBSNews on what it's like to retire in Asheville. Click on "Videos" above the photo on that page to view the Asheville retirement video segment hosted by Martha Teishner.
Local economy is driven by
Banking and finance, real estate, tourism, retirement communities, medical, education
Climate and Physical Environment
Asheville is situated in the western part of the North Carolina. Rolling hills giving way to serious mountains to the west. The climate is mild in summer and cooler than the rest of NC in winter. The average July high temperature is 84 and the average January high is 46 (the average low is 27). The wettest month is March (4").
Restaurants & Cultural Scene
There is something to do every day in downtown Asheville. You can visit the home of Asheville's famous son, writer Thomas Wolfe, or browse through an art gallery on Biltmore Avenue. Look inside the historic St. Lawrence Basilica. Head down to the Asheville Community Theater, North Carolina Stage Company, Asheville ArtCenter, Diana Wortham Theater, or the Flatrock Theater for a play, a symphony or a modern dance performance. For old time blues or rock n' roll check out one of downtown's many clubs or bars. Good restaurants. UNC's Asheville campus has the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, an excellent resource.
The City-Data,com Crime Index in Asheville is 498, considerably higher than the U.S.average of 321. The crime tends to be property rather than violent crime, and obviously differs by neighborhood.
Memorial Mission Hospital. Thoms Rehabilitation Hosp
• Asheville Regional Airport • The nearest big airports is Charlotte, which is an easy drive by Interstate highway. Asheville is about average in walkability when compared to other communities.
Beaverdam Run is not an official over 55 community although everyone is over 55 and probably 99% are over 65. What makes it unique for retirees is that it is actually in Asheville with big mountain views. There are 113 low density condos (mostly 3 br, some 2 br) on 100 landscape acres with full amenities such as indoor pool, tennis, clubhouse, garden plots, clubs, hiking trails. The country club of Asheville is 5 minutes away if you like golf, as are shops/resturants/library/etc. Downtown Asheville is another 5 minutes away Beaverdam Run is convenient to Asheville without having to get on the interstate or drive a distance to shop and dine.
Posted by RoJo on February 02, 2017
New Feature - post your comments about Asheville here
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