304 North Cardinal St.
Dorchester Center, MA 02124
Housed in five adjoining buildings, we enter the steel factory-turned-hotel through double gates flanked by gas-lit lanterns into a courtyard, which feels like an oasis in the center of a bustling downtown.
A favorite of guests and in-the-know locals, the hotel’s courtyard feels like a private hideaway, slightly removed from downtown Asheville’s hustle and bustle. Relax on the lawn in Adirondack chairs, or enjoy the manicured grounds from a shaded table on the patio.
Edison bulbs illuminate the industrial-chic hub of the hotel. Several cozy seating areas cluster around flat-screens and fireplaces, offering plenty of space for groups to gather. The bar inside the lounge serves a menu of sweet and savory small plates from on-site restaurant Benne on Eagle and an extensive list of craft cocktails. We learned that the smoky old-fashioned is a guest favorite. The lounge also showcases live music Wednesday through Sunday evenings.
Big windows let in lots of light and air into a well-equipped studio complete with Pelotons, free weights and cardio equipment. We loved the nod to Muhammad Ali, boxing gloves and butterflies, in the whimsical wall mural.
A popular choice for honeymooners, the spacious king corner suites feature a large seating area and courtyard views. Remote control curtains, found in every room type, add a wow factor, letting in ample light through the building’s original windows.
The Foundry’s much-buzzed-about on-site restaurant, Benne on Eagle, attracts visitors and locals with its modern, soulful take on Appalachian fare. Everything from the ingredients to the portraits hanging on exposed brick walls pay homage to Asheville’s rich Black history. Plan at least one breakfast and one dinner here to get the full foodie experience. (By plan, we mean make reservations, especially for brunch and weekend dinners.)
Although centrally located, The Foundry can be unassuming on your approach, with brick walls that blend in with surrounding buildings. Blink, and you’ll miss the vintage-inspired sign that marks the main entrance.
Staff say standard king rooms are one of the more popular accommodation types. The rooms are in the newer buildings and feature the same amenities as a historic king but with carpeted floors. Some have exposed brick and courtyard views, but all feature headboard reading lamps.
In the stairwell between the hotel and restaurant, the building’s original elevator has been cleverly retrofitted as a wine cellar. We walked up the stairs to the right of the shaft for a closer look at the whole operation. It’s open to the public but feels like stumbling upon a hidden treasure.
All the plants you see throughout the property are installed and maintained by the local, woman-owned plant shop Rosarina. The greenery adds a warming, natural contrast to the industrial, metal and brick elements.
Quirky artwork in vintage, mismatched frames hangs above the headboards in all the rooms we toured, reflecting various styles of art that you might have seen in homes during the early 1900s.
The house Tesla car is parked at a charging station by the front entrance. This complimentary drop-off service takes guests anywhere in the downtown Asheville area by appointment (and pending availability) from noon through 8 p.m.
It’s all in the details. With every turn, we discovered vintage items thoughtfully placed throughout the property, like this typewriter.
Right off the lobby, the marketplace offers locally sourced snacks, souvenirs and reading material. We appreciated the hotel’s signature scent diffused throughout the property, which features hints of leather, tobacco and honey and is available to purchase as a candle or a flameless diffuser.
A chandelier and plants hang in the light-filled stairwell of the hotel’s E building, providing a pleasant reprieve from the dank elevator alternatives found in most hotels.
Bernard is a sports and physical education expert with years of experience. He's passionate about promoting health and wellness through physical activity, and he's worked with athletes and non-athletes alike to help them achieve their fitness goals. Bernard holds a degree in Physical Education and is dedicated to staying up-to-date with the latest trends and research in his field.