July 25, 2024


Travel Finishes First

The Gingerbread Extravaganza of the Holiday Season

The Gingerbread Extravaganza of the Holiday Season

Since 1992, the holiday season at The Omni Grove Park Inn begins with cookie-walled houses, sugar-spun adornments, and whimsical imaginations. From coast to coast, seasoned cookie creators embrace the magic of the holiday with stunning gingerbread houses and enter the nation’s most competitive holiday event – the 30th National Gingerbread House Competition.


Impacting the Asheville Community

What is truly remarkable about this community is not only do hundreds of competitors apply to compete, but thousands more venture to Asheville to witness this sugary extravaganza. Upon stepping into the magic of the holiday season at The Grove Park Inn, guests are invited to join the 12 Days of Gingerbread – where one gingerbread competitor winner will be announced per day, with the Grand Prize Winner being revealed on December 12. Fans can make their own gingerbread house with our chef-inspired recipe, and be a part of the gift that keeps on giving through the Holiday Parking Program.

Since the inception of the Holiday Parking Partner program in 2012, The Omni Grove Park Inn has contributed more than $680,000 to non-profit partners throughout the Western North Carolina community. With over fifteen charities including the Salvation Army Boys and Girls Club Asheville and Children First/Communities In Schools, the spirit of giving continues to burn brightly alongside the toasty hearth of The Omni Grove Park Inn entrance.



Whether it’s creating a difference in the lives of the community or creating gumdrop-adorned masterpieces, a sense of tradition and family continues to thrive throughout this cherished gingerbread community. From the very young to the very young at heart, the four age categories – Adult, Teen, Youth and Child – bring their imaginations to life amidst an esteemed panel of judges. These nationally renowned food, arts, and media professionals challenge contestants to pay the highest attention to detail, explore unique ingredient pairings, and discover a world of candied colors.




National Competition Turned Family Reunion

Omni Grove Park Inn’s very own Chef John Cook – Executive Pastry Chef & Gingerbread Judge – shared what this momentous tradition means to him, “From the moment you drive on property, you can feel the energy of every competitor. It has gone from a National Competition to a giant family reunion. There are so many competitors who have come back year after year not only to rise in the ranks and possibly win, but to see their friends grow along the way too. The ambiance of the hotel and its history along with the competition really set the stage for our competitors to come in and put their best foot forward.”

As these competitors continue to rise to the challenge and exceed expectations, the classic gingerbread house has evolved from icing-decked walls and candied roofs to ornate displays of spiced craftsmanship. For the past 30 years, this tradition has become the heartbeat of the holiday season for The Omni Grove Park Inn, and the reaction to this magical experience will forever remain the same one of wonder, awe, and delight.

For more information on The Omni Grove Park Inn or to make reservations, call (800) 438-5800 or visit www.omnihotels.com/hotels/asheville-grove-park. For more information on The 30th Annual National Gingerbread House Competition™, call the Gingerbread Hotline at (800) 413-5778 or visit omnihotels.com/gingerbread.