The Estes-Winn Antique Car Museum at Grovewood Village has been part of the iconic area since 1966, when Harry Blomberg opened the museum to show off a collection of vintage automobiles. Blomberg is the founder of Harry’s on the Hill, the oldest family-owned car dealership in Asheville, so he definitely knows cars.
When you walk through the doors, you’ll feel like you’ve stepped back in time. The museum has a 1957 Cadillac Eldorado Brougham on display. Cadillac only manufactured 400 of these models, so it’s a rare sight to see. The 1959 Edsel Corsair is a full-size model manufactured by Ford. It boasted an impressive engine for its time: a 6.7-liter V-8 unit paired with either a two-speed automatic or three-speed manual transmission. The cars on display aren’t roped off, so you can get an up close look at these classic models.
Along with vintage cars, the museum showcases stories about each of the vehicles on display. These stories relate to famous people during the time in which each vehicle was in its prime. The walls are rich with art pieces, immersing you in the flair of the local culture.
Make sure you also get a look at the enormous, custom-made Roycroft chandeliers, mounted above your head in the museum. These are almost a century old and inscribed with Shakespearean quotes. They once hung in Fred Seely’s stone castle, Overlook.
The building housing the exhibits is a historic part of Grovewood Village. Constructed nearly a century ago in 1923, it originally housed the weaving shop of Biltmore Industries. Atop the original wood floors sat over 40 looms, all in steady operation to produce high-quality homespun fabrics. Past U.S. presidents, First Ladies, and other national icons wore some of the materials produced in this location. Talk to the attendant at the front desk and you might get a tour of the building.
Most of the vintage cars sit on the upper level, with only a handful sitting on the bottom floor. Parking is available right next to the building for easy access. The Antique Car Museum at Grovewood Village sits next to the Grovewood Gallery, which houses a variety of works by local artists, along with an outdoor garden that contains several sculptures. Grovewood Village is a hidden gem that’s worth exploring during a visit to Asheville.
- When visiting on a cold day, bring a jacket into the museum. The heater works at the front of the museum, but the other areas tend to stay chilly throughout the colder months. The poor ventilation is partly why the museum is closed from January to March.