Determined to “Make America Great Again” after over a decade of belting out “you’re hired” or “you’re fired” on The Apprentice, real estate mogul Donald Trump is currently vying for residency at the most prestigious address in the country—1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. Accustomed to getting his way as a billionaire skilled in negotiations, the Republican presidential nominee is doing his best to bide his time before the November 2016 presidential election while running his campaign from his penthouse atop the world-famous Trump Tower in New York.
Born into wealth in Queens, New York and following in his father’s real estate footsteps while studying finance at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Finance and Commerce, Trump amassed a vast real estate portfolio and a reputation as a shrewd businessman after taking over as Chairman of the Trump Organization in 1971. Since then, the 70-year-old has built an impressive $4.5 billion net worth and has established his professional brand with business interests around the globe. However, out of his entire portfolio, his most iconic and quite possibly one of the most controversial structures is the Trump Tower, which the billionaire purchased in 1979 only to unapologetically destroy the former Bonwit Teller flagship store and historic art deco friezes in 1979 to bring his Manhattan dream to life. And, after four years of grueling construction, Trump made history when he debuted the largest glass building in New York City on November 30, 1983.
Soaring above 5th Avenue, Trump’s lavish residence shares the street with high profile stores like Gucci and Tiffany & Co. The first 26 floors are occupied by luxury offices and commercial tenants with residential spaces occupying floors 30 through 65 and accessible through a private side entrance that is perfect for famous residents like Bruce Willis, Cristiano Ronaldo and Andrew Lloyd Webber. A five-level atrium features a 60-foot indoor waterfall that adds to the prestige of the famed intersection of 5th Avenue and 56th Street. Amenities in the entire facility include a 24-hour valet, concierge and doorman, fitness facility, maid service, upscale dining venues, landscaped walkways, a garden and a courtyard with expansive floor plans ranging anywhere from 1,000 to 3,700 square feet and climbing in price the higher they sit.
A distinct reflection of Trump’s approach to luxurious living, the flashy Trump Tower’s exterior is just as striking with its jagged glass and dramatic bronze tower that is considered an architectural masterpiece and was praised by the New York Times as “a New York blockbuster of superior design.” Public spaces certainly don’t disappoint and live up to Trump’s exquisite standards with pink-veined marble from floor to ceiling as well as four gold-toned elevators flanked by security guards ready to transport guests to and from the lobby. Mirrors and brass shine throughout the tower with a small bridge that crosses the waterfall’s pool as well as an oversized skylight in the atrium. Off to the side to ensure the utmost privacy, a single elevator awaits to take Trump, Melania and their guests up to the penthouse on the 66th floor.
Often compared to the Palace of Versailles and estimated to be worth $100 million, the gold and diamond front door of the Trump penthouse opens to a residence fit for a king. Wrapped from floor to ceiling in marble and gold, Trump’s over-the-top style is evident across every square inch of the home with 24-carat gold accenting the ceilings as well as the picture frames seen throughout the house and the desk in his wife’s office. Adding in personal touches like family portraits and crested pillows, the home has a strong Greek influence with Athenian vases, bronze statues and paintings of gods like Apollo riding chariots across the heavens that truly make the space feel regal.
Sparing absolutely no expense on the penthouse’s symmetry and elegance across three entire floors, Trump hired famed designer Angelo Donghia to decorate the home shortly before Donghia’s death in 1985. Using “The Sun King” Louis XIV of France for inspiration, Donghia’s attention to detail is remarkable throughout the luxurious penthouse from the ivory couches and gold accents to the detailed flooring, crystal chandeliers and Greek-inspired marble columns.
Carrying the same décor into the breakfast room, gold-rimmed glasses stand neatly on a gold platter as gold lamps, vases, crown molding and even cherubs adorn the posh modern-day palace. In the sitting room, a fountain sits behind one of two couches with rare editions of Vogue Living, the Vanity Fair Oscar Night Photography Book and a copy of GOAT: A Tribute to Muhammad Ali that set Trump back an astonishing $15,000 and is signed by Ali himself. Ornate bowls and candelabras complement the décor with additional touches including the family’s coat of arms as well as a portrait of Fred with Donald and his three siblings—Elizabeth, Maryann and Robert—in the sitting room.
With one floor solely dedicated to the 10-year-old Barron, Melania’s office down the hall, Trump’s private office a few floors down as well as his campaign headquarters, there’s no question that Trump certainly has it made when it comes to convenience and style. Add in the fact that this is only one home on a long list of houses that include a winery, a New England estate and a beachfront mansion and it’s no wonder why Trump works so hard to stay so rich! Of course, the question remains: Is he ready to give up his golden abode for the White House? We’ll just have to wait and see!