The estate was acquired at the turn of the 20th century by Thomas Fortune Ryan, a Nelson County native who had become one of the 10 wealthiest men in the nation. He made several alterations to the buildings and grounds – adding a formal Italian garden, rotunda greenhouse, railroad station and a horse race track. The estate is a great place to enjoy the views of the blue ridge mountains.
Once you step onto the grounds you can immediately envision summer time soirees with the south’s finest. The mansion is very stately. It has large windows, great architectural details, a sprawling front lawn, and a large wrap around porch. Making your way through the mansion to the backyard you are presented with a large boxwood garden maze, statues, water features, and a gorgeous vintage greenhouse. The options for great photos is endless.
The ceremony, cocktail hour, and reception can take place in a multitude of places around the property. Inside the mansion is a ballroom. Outside there are the formal gardens, rose garden, verandas and the front lawn. If you prefer to have a small ceremony there is an old Roman Catholic stone church on the property. The chapel is small, it can seat about 50 guests, but it is very quaint and pretty.
If you decide to not use the mansion as your reception space there is the carriage house. The carriage house was recently build and carried over several of the time period aspects of the mansion. The carriage house is outfitted with all of the modern amenities. It can hold up to 350 guests for a seated dinner and 775 standing. The carriage house has a back portico for your guests to take a break and enjoy the outdoors.
Photos: Brett Denfeld Photography
As always, I would love to chat.