A Look at Asheville Weaves Together the Vibrant Tapestry of WNC

November 29, 2023

Established in 2003, A Look at Asheville emerged from a realization that the remarkable blend of restaurants, hotels, shops, and adventures in Western North Carolina deserved a dedicated showcase. 

The guidebook, now celebrating its 20th anniversary with the 2023-2024 edition, is a captivating coffee-table publication. Laden with stunning photography and carefully curated content, it serves as a must-have for hotels, B&Bs, and vacation rentals.

Check out our Q&A with Co-Publishers Kendra Payne and Denise Szakaly below. 

Tell us about your business and the role you play in it. 

A Look at Asheville is the premier visitor guidebook for Asheville and its surrounding communities. They celebrated their 20th anniversary in August with the release of the 2023-2024 edition. The vibrant coffee-table publication provides beautiful photography, engaging content, and a well-curated collection of the city’s best shopping, dining, tours, entertainment, experiences, and more. Co-publishers Kendra Payne and Denise Szakaly are incredibly honored to work with small businesses that inspire them to create such a high-quality must-have for hotels, B&Bs, and vacation rentals. Their mission is to connect readers with the places and people that make Asheville and Western North Carolina one of the most sought-after places to visit and live.

What made you choose the Asheville area?

In 2003, the founders of A Look at Asheville saw how Western North Carolina’s vibrant setting of restaurants, hotels, shops, and adventures deserved its own publication with gorgeous photography contained in a beautifully-bound book.

Who are your key partners?

A Look at Asheville has many key partners that aid in making the publication a success. The publication is owned and produced by local creatives Kendra Payne and Denise Szakaly. They are proud to work with local photographers, copywriters, and businesses, as well as their print partners, to showcase the best local businesses that WNC offers. A Look at Asheville partners with area hotels, B&Bs, vacation rentals, and retail partners who have hosted the book for years.

What has been your greatest challenge? Your greatest victory?

Our greatest challenge, since gaining ownership in 2017, has been to continue the reflection, vision, and determination of the legacy that is A Look at Asheville. Like all other businesses, they faced hardship in 2020 due to COVID. 

The greatest victory is overcoming the many unexpected challenges that COVID presented and being awarded a Sky High Growth award in May. A Look at Asheville also celebrated 20 years in August with the launch of the 2023-2024 edition. They are proud to continue to grow the A Look at Asheville brand in the local business community.

What is a little-known fact about your organization?

A Look at Asheville donates a percentage of its sales to The V Foundation in honor of past owner, Stephanie Smith, who created a solid foundation for A Look at Asheville to thrive.

What does the word “community” mean to you?

Community means to appertain and actively support local by working as a collective to build our city’s ecosystem, so we as a community can flourish.

Is there anything else you’d like to share about your business?

A Look at Asheville just launched a new website in conjunction with the release of the celebratory 20th-anniversary edition. The new website features local businesses and monthly blogs to help promote local businesses and the enriched culture of the Asheville community.

Visit their newly launched website at www.alookatasheville.com, where you can discover local businesses and delve into monthly blogs that capture the essence of the Asheville community. Stay updated on the latest news, features, and events by following A Look at Asheville on Facebook and Instagram.