North Carolina might not be where you'd typically expect to find a French-style chteau, but the Biltmore Forest area of Asheville isn't your typical North Carolina neighborhood.
"We have people from all over the world" who buy homes in the area, attracted by its temperate climate, wide array of fine dining, and its extensive outdoor entertainment options, says Ann Skoglund, listing agent for this 16,221-square-foot, chateau-inspired mansion that's on the market for $10.75 million.
Built on nearly 2 acres by the owners over a five-year period, 2000 to 2005, the estate seems right at home in this exclusive area that borders the fabled Biltmore Estate built by George Vanderbilt in the 1890s.
"It's a fabulous house," says Skoglund. "The people who see it, I think, overwhelmingly are impressed by the incredible quality and substance of the house." Italian limestone was used to construct the home, which features a dramatic central staircase to its second floor.
The home, with five bedrooms and 8.5 bathrooms, also includes an indoor pool on an entertainment level, which has a card room, a home theater with kitchen, and a wine room.
The second-floor master suite includes his-and-her bathrooms, his-and-her closets, and a morning kitchen, one of six kitchens throughout the home.
The main kitchen on the first floor features "every appliance you can think of, including a steamer, warming oven, and built-in espresso maker," says Skoglund. And adjoining it is a catering kitchen, perfect for preparing a sumptuous menu for any party held in the formal dining area. Partygoers can easily spill over into the grand living room with its dramatic fireplace and second-floor gallery.
The home's second floor also features a separate two-bedroom, two-bathroom apartment with a private entrance.
Finding the right buyer for the exclusive property is taking some time. The house has been on the market for two-and-a-half years, Skoglund notes. But she's been marketing it internationally and in other parts of the U.S. as well, noting that international buyers who might first buy in Florida often turn their gaze to the Asheville area because of its more moderate climate.
After discussing potential buyers with her seller, Skoglund says the idea of a buyer with a net worth of at least $50 million emerged as a target.
"If they are of the quality to afford this house, there really isn't that much else to choose from that's this spectacular," she says.