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Drought Impacts Beer Industry

At Shoji retreat in Asheville guests sign up to get away from the cold by sitting in hot tubs filled with water at a toasty 104-degrees.

"We actually ask you to show up about 15-20 minutes ahead of schedule because we follow the japanese tradition where we ask you to shower before you go into the tub," said Laura Alonso who runs the front desk and chats with incoming guests registering for the first time.

"I feel a lot better than when I went from my car to the door," said Bob Sommerville as he received his robe to change into anticipating getting into the hot water.

"I hate the cold, I'm done with it. You just have to treat yourself sometimes." said Sommerville.

"People love to come here in the cold weather if it's snowing it just draws people in," said Laura.

At the Grove Park Inn guest like Kathy and Harry Dutton from Raleigh sat in rocking chairs as the two huge fireplaces in the luxurious hotel's main lobby were stoked.

"It's very nice to get away from the cold," said Kathy as she sipped her wine and relaxed with her husband at the hotel. The two came to Asheville and Grove Park to celebrate their 43rd wedding anniversary.

"He(Harry) told me if the fireplaces weren't working, he would make sure I stayed warm," said Kathy with a laugh.

But there's no break from the cold for ice sculpture artist Ryan Spangler.

"It's twenty degrees in here so even when it's twenty out there it doesn't bother me at all," said Spangler as he worked on his latest icy sculpture. He works for Masterpiece Ice Sculptures in Asheville. The company creates cold masterpieces for the Grove Park Inn and other local customers. Spangler said it's been colder outside than in his workshop kept at 20-degrees. But for Spangler, the cold outside makes no difference. He enjoys his work and knows he just has to dress up, in layers, to stay warm until he can get home to some heat.

by Kimberly King
Follow Kim on Twitter @KimKingReports


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