When I first called Christian Wolter, the second generation innkeeper of Landrum’s Red Horse Inn, I thought we were going to simply talk about the return of the Inn’s concert series. Instead, I quickly learned that the Inn itself was the story I wanted to tell. While I had heard of the Red Horse Inn by virtue of seeing its name regularly appearing as a music venue on the iOnGreenville Concert Calendar, I had no idea just how much magic the Inn held in and of itself.
The Red Horse Inn opened on about 200 acres in 1995 and offered guests picturesque views of the Blue Ridge Mountains just 45 minutes from Downtown Greenville and an hour to Downtown Asheville. With its main inn and standalone cottages, it has served both as the perfect romantic getaway as well as wedding and event venue. Each cottage offers its own distinct features as some have private hot tubs, others unparalleled views, and still others being pet friendly. The setting, coziness of the rooms and cottages, and the Wolter family’s passion for pleasing their guests have all combined to earn the Inn well deserved acclaim as a romantic destination from the likes of Travel & Leisure, Trip Advisor, Yahoo! and more.
The property also boasts a bit of living history as it serves as the home of My Little Secret, the great granddaughter of the Triple Crown winning Secretariat. Guests to the property can visit her and possibly even meet the inn’s two alpacas, Champagne and Waffles. The alpacas will actually be the featured guests as the concert series kicks off next week but we will talk more about that later.
As with any family business, new generations bring new energy and focus to the table and, as a result, much has evolved since Christian took over the family business in 2017. First, he built a wine bar designed to serve both guests and the general public so anyone could come out and soak in the scenery the inn’s property has to offer. This expansion opens up to a terrace which lends itself perfectly to hosting live music, which is exactly what the Inn did almost uninterrupted throughout 2020.
As with many businesses, the pandemic forced The Red Horse Inn to adjust its business model to the times and, as far as I can tell, Christian executed that perfectly. First, he closed the only two rooms in the inn that shared a hallway, ensuring that guests could safely distance themselves from strangers indoors. The wine bar closed for interior seating, pushing the traffic outdoors where space is hardly an issue. A maximum capacity was set and the music played on into November of last year.
With the quiet winter season nearly behind us, The Red Horse Inn’s new concert season begins next Saturday. All pandemic era precautions will still be in place but there will now be two artists per day instead of one, effectively doubling the amount of live music at the inn. With 14 artists scheduled in just the second half of March, it all adds up to a lot to talk about and I will be back here next week to do just that. In the meantime, pick a weekend to take your loved one on an adventure to The Red Horse Inn and feel free to thank me later.
Upstate Live Music Calendar