By The Fix staff 04/11/18

Alumni from this North Carolina rehab praise the individualized treatment and loving, family-like environment: "The whole establishment is caring and invested in your recovery."

Asheville Recovery Center
Location : Asheville, NC
Phone : (828) 330-9548
Price : $17,500 / month Most insurance accepted.
Overall :
Accommodations :
Treatment :
Food :
Insurance : Yes
Detox : No

Nestled within the scenic, lush mountains of North Carolina, Asheville Recovery Center (ARC) is an addiction and dual diagnosis treatment facility that offers residential treatment, a Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP) and an Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP) for men and women. The center provides a comprehensive treatment program that combines several different types of therapies, techniques and methods to ensure long-term sobriety. Residents at Asheville Recovery Center enjoy upscale accommodations while they focus on their recovery, which is further supported by structure and routine. Treatment at the center is rooted in the 12-step philosophy, though no one’s recovery experience is identical. Treatment is highly individualized and clinicians specifically tailor plans to fit each client’s needs.

Clients seek treatment at Asheville for a wide range of reasons, finding help in many different ways. “I have been using heroin and Xanax for the last ten years and couldn’t stop,” one former client admitted. “I was tired of letting my family down,” another said. “I was broken and didn’t know what to do. I had tried rehab before, but nothing helped me stay clean.” Asheville offers stays of 30 days to six months, but most people stay in residential for 45-60 days and then transition to evening IOP.

The facility’s clientele was highly varied in both age and background, with one former client commenting on “all ranges of income and all different walks of life,” with ages ranging from 18 to 60. Another client said that residents included everyone “from a CEO to a pizza delivery guy.” At the end of the day, though, everyone had the same goal in mind. “Most of my fellow addicts are looking to gain back the confidence and experience of working full-time and living a drug-free life,” one client said, noting that they “all had different backgrounds” but were trying to find “the same solution to the same problem.”

Asheville residents live in a 16-unit, 32-bed former hunting lodge that was very recently renovated. Each apartment is a two-bedroom unit, but private rooms are available for an extra fee. The units include a full kitchen, cable TV, granite countertops and new appliances. Laundry facilities are also readily available for residents, and there are picturesque views everywhere of the surrounding mountains. Overall, everyone at ARC seemed to take pride in keeping their facility clean, with many of the residents noting that they “did stuff as a community to keep everything else nice.” On the other hand, “If some clients refused to take care of their space they would get written up. They wanted a clean environment.”

Residents shop for themselves on a regular basis (an important life skill), and "mostly cook their own meals." “It is an awesome experience,” one resident observed. “We are provided with enough money and resources to live comfortably.” Another resident noted that “we live in a community that teaches life skills, so some of the staff and clients helped me out with learning how to prepare my own food.” Although "Coffee and snacks are always available."

Routines are an important part of the recovery process at Asheville, and the schedule is structured around treatment. “Your day starts at 9 [during the week] and you have groups and work on your recovery until 3,” one alum reported. “We also would have yoga, go on hikes and go to the gym different days of the week.” On the weekends, clients are able to enjoy activities like going to the movies, visiting bookstores or snow tubing. The majority of the day, however, is comprised of group and private therapy sessions.

Alumni claimed that the facility’s rules were well-understood by everyone, which resulted in very few, if any, reported infractions. “They would talk to us like adults,” one former resident observed. “They didn’t yell at us and treat us like kids.” The majority of residents commented on how the staff was “professional,” “kind” and “very supportive,” among other things. “If you were disrespectful or something you would get TV taken away for the night, or maybe not be allowed to attend a fun activity on the weekend,” one alumnus reported but, on the whole, most residents claimed that the rules were largely followed without incident, although consequences could vary based on “who was working… There is 24 hour staff, everyone cares but some were more strict about things.”

Asheville Recovery Center features a good number of amenities and activities for its residents. Many of the alumni commented on the weekend bonfires, where everyone gathers and makes s’mores. A gym was available “3 to 4 times a week, depending on how often we wanted to go.” Yoga, Tai chi and hiking were among the most popular amenities at ARC for those we surveyed, while a couple alums enjoyed all of the outdoor amenities that were available: wilderness therapy, gem mining, gardening and caving, and more. Phones are reportedly restricted at Asheville after a “five day blackout period” (“We can use the phone once a day for 10 minutes”; “One phone call a day in normal circumstances”). There is no Internet access, though if clients needed to get online for some reason, their therapist could approve and facilitate it.

Former clients were positive about the medical attention they received at Asheville. Residents broadly described the physicians as “friendly,” “great and compassionate,” “very caring” and “helpful.” Clients see doctors two or three times a week, depending on their individual situations, in order to check progress and adjust medications. And while the physicians aren’t on site 24 hours a day, they are on call for emergency situations. The non-medical treatment was rated just as highly at Asheville: “The community is wonderful [and the] staff [is] very caring and respectful,” one alumnus wrote. “Too much really to write,” another said. “I would say the most special thing to me is that I felt part of a little family. I made life-long connections and learned to forgive myself. We did mostly 12-step [work] but the holistic [groups] were cool and I learned about my disease in a way that made sense to me. I am not really super-spiritual so the education part really worked for me.” Many others echoed those same sentiments, commenting on the wide range of treatment methods offered by Asheville, including CBT, DBT and 12-step group meetings. (Religion is not emphasized at all in the program.)

Alumni also applauded the balanced approach that the staff took. According to those surveyed, the staff didn’t take a strict “tough-love” approach nor were they entirely permissive, either. “There is a strong balance here,” one resident wrote. “I’d argue it was one of the best things [Asheville] was good at. You aren’t going to be destroyed by breaking a simple rule, but the consequences will be consistent.” Another alumnus agreed: “They make sure you are doing the right thing. [They] just want to know you are working your program and not affecting other clients in a bad way. We couldn’t get away with anything bad because the staff actually cares and are in recovery.” In fact, one client probably summed up Asheville’s approach best: “It had a perfect middle ground. It was like a huge family.”

Perhaps the simplest, most indelible comment on Asheville is the fact that every single alumnus we surveyed reported that they were still sober after seeking treatment there (“I have a year clean now”; “I owe my life to them”; “They’re still here every step of the way”). In fact, their comments were nothing short of rhapsodic. “I’ve been in other forms of treatment and they do not compare to Asheville,” one client said. “The place is exceptional,” another observed. “Best treatment facility I have been to. The whole establishment is caring and invested in your recovery. All the owners are in recovery and take time to get to know each client.” Others applauded the “kind,” “incredible” and “amazing” staff. Most everyone used the word “family” in one way or another to describe ARC. “I truly felt like I was a part of a family,” one former resident said. “That includes techs, administrations, therapists, and even admissions. [They] all treated me with love.”

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