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Staying at The Foundry Asheville: hotel review

Foundry Asheville courtyard

I’ve been to Asheville four times now, and over the course of those trips, I’ve stayed in just about every accommodation type you can think of: chain hotel downtown, riverside cabin, tiny-house Airbnb. But it wasn’t until my latest trip that I found the lodging option I know I’ll be returning to on future visits: The Foundry Asheville hotel. The hotel sits inside a lovely, historic red-brick building and features Instagram-worthy design details around every corner. But the best part? It’s a member of Hilton’s Curio Collection, meaning you an earn or use Hilton Honors points on your stay. Read on to see what else I loved about it!

STAYING AT THE FOUNDRY ASHEVILLE: HOTEL REVIEW

Foundry Asheville sign
Foundry Asheville entryway

FOUNDRY HOTEL LOCATION

The hotel sits on “The Block,” a historical pocket of town that was once a hub for Asheville’s African-American community. The area recently rebounded after a few decades spent in disrepair, and the hotel has helped with its resurgence. 

While The Block is definitely its own enclave, it could scarcely be closer to downtown. From The Foundry, you’ll be able to walk anywhere in downtown Asheville in matter of just a few minutes, meaning you won’t need a car unless you choose to do some Blue Ridge Parkway exploring outside the city. 

That said, if you DO feel you need a car to get somewhere locally, The Foundry’s got you covered. It has a Tesla available to transport guests anywhere downtown on-demand, and Jake at the front desk was a great sport about taking me on a two-minute ride just so I could give the service a try!

Foundry Asheville lobby

Room keys
Foundry Asheville lobby

CHECK-IN

I arrived at The Foundry several hours before check-in, but the hotel staff was able to stow my bags in the luggage room without a problem while I went out to explore (not before first snapping some photos of the hotel’s gorgeous lobby, though—plants! chandeliers! parquet floors!). When I returned, I was able to go to my room right away, and the staff offered me a glass of champagne on arrival. 

While I wasn’t offered late check-out despite my Hilton Diamond status, after pushing hard, I secured a 1 p.m. check-out—two hours later than normal. 

One thing to note: I was a little confused as to where my keys were, as all I received were two cards that looked like playing cards. But those were actually the keys! I’ve never seen anything like them—there’s no magnetic strip visible anywhere. Consider this your heads up!

Foundry Asheville lounge

FOUNDRY HOTEL PROPERTY

The Foundry, as its name would suggest, once served as an actual foundry that forged the steel for the nearby Biltmore Estate. You can see evidence of the building’s previous life in its red-brick exterior and the way it curves around a central courtyard, which you’ll walk across if you dine at Benne on Eagle (see below). The hotel also has old photos elegantly displayed in its entryway to give guests an idea of what Asheville used to look like back in the day.

Other than that, though, the interior is all modern—the hotel opened in December, 2018 after all—and it’s a design lover’s dream. Just off the lobby, you’ll find a vast common area complete with fireplaces, televisions, games, a piano and a bar that serves drinks and snacks. It’s a great place sit and have a drink before dinner or grab some food after check-out (I did both!).

While the hotel doesn’t have a pool, it does have a gym and a small shop (stocked with local favorites and oft-forgotten travel items) available to guests.

Foundry Asheville bed

Foundry Asheville bed
Desk

FOUNDRY HOTEL ROOMS

Echoing the building’s red-brick exterior—of which I had a beautiful view from my room—many of The Foundry’s rooms also have an exposed brick wall. My king room was one of the ones that did, and it also sported a gallery wall of art above the bed, making for a very trendy space.

As you’d expect from a new hotel, the lamps on either side of the bed featured outlets for easy overnight charging, and the mini-fridge came with four complimentary mini water bottles. 

Other things I loved included a shower that almost resembled a rain shower, with a very high, very wide shower head and really good water pressure. The turn-down service also stuck out: Hotel staff brought around thermoses of hot herbal tea, which was such a nice touch. 

Like other Curio Collection hotels (including those I’ve written about here, here and here), The Foundry eschewed your standard chain-hotel toiletries for products from Beekman 1802. While the products were from New York—a.k.a. not local—it’s still always nice to have something a little out-of-the-ordinary when it comes to hotel toiletries, and these black peppercorn/cardamon/clove-scented soaps fit the bill.

My one real complaint The Foundry: Not only was there no bathtub in my room, but there are no bathtubs in the entire hotel! I know that most guests don’t get hung up on this, but a bathtub is something I look for in every hotel room I stay in. Other than that, just one other quirk stuck out: The desk chair was weirdly low considering the height of the desk, making it a little awkward to work over there. But thanks to the abundance of common space downstairs—and the inviting atmosphere—I didn’t need to use the desk very much, anyway.

Benne on Eagle
Benne on Eagle pancakes

FOUNDRY HOTEL DINING

As I mentioned above, The Foundry is home to Benne on Eagle, a restaurant that’s taken Asheville’s dining scene by storm. Through its menu of soul food (with some unexpected twists), the restaurant pays tribute to The Block and Eagle Street, which was the neighborhood’s business and entertainment center. 

But the throwback doesn’t end there. Many family members of those who ran successful businesses on The Block back in the 60s and 70s now make up Benne’s kitchen staff, according to the restaurant’s website, helping root Benne in cultural heritage.

Benne is not just about paying homage, though; the food is excellent, too. I received a $30 credit to the restaurant (good for breakfast only) thanks to my Diamond status, but I also dined there for dinner with a large group on that same trip. Nobody had anything but excellent things to say.

In the hotel’s bar area, meanwhile, you’ll find a snack menu that includes fancy popcorn and this cheese plate, both of which I tried while there!

Foundry Asheville bar 
Cheese board

BOOKING THE FOUNDRY ASHEVILLE HOTEL

As I mentioned above, The Foundry is a member of Hilton’s Curio Collection, which means it’s bookable with Hilton Honors points. As I write this, standard rooms are running 42,000 points per night. But thanks to Hilton’s dynamic pricing system, the cost in points can and does change depending on availability and time of year. I happened to be in Asheville at the height of tourist season—late October—and so rooms were pricing out at nearly double that amount. For this October, I’m seeing 80,000/night!

Because I was saving my points for a different trip—and because I stayed during what amounted to a triple-points promotion for Hilton Honors Aspire credit card holders (read more about why I love it here!)—I chose to use cash for my stay. All together, I spent $317.93 on the room, which is definitely a splurge for me. But I took home 13,124 points on the stay, enough to get me about one-third of the way to a free night at a decent hotel—and that’s not to mention the 14 Honors points per dollar I earned by charging that sum to my Aspire card.

For more info on how to book hotels for free using points, check out the 52 Cities free resource library or register to join me on an upcoming masterclass. And for more on Asheville, check out my complete city guide, my bar and restaurant guide and the perfect three-day itinerary for first-timers!

Foundry Asheville lounge
Foundry Asheville courtyard

Hope you enjoyed this review of The Foundry Asheville! Have you been to Asheville? Where did you stay? Let me know in the comments! >>

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The Foundry Asheville
The Foundry Asheville

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