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On Monday, Aug. 8, 2022, former President Donald J. Trump’s home in Florida, Mar-a-Lago, was raided by the FBI.
As reaction continues to come in about this event — What is Mar-a-Lago? Where is it, exactly? How big is it, and how long has he owned it?
Here is some detail and background.
In Donald J. Trump’s 2004 book, “Trump: Think Like a Billionaire: Everything You Need to Know About Success, Real Estate, and Life,” he wrote, in part, “Mar-a-Lago was sitting there a long time before I saw it and decided to move on that magnificent site.”
“I had the right vision for it,” added Trump, “and the timing was right for me — and ultimately, for the seller as well.”
When did Trump buy Mar-a-Lago?
Trump bought Mar-a-Lago in 1985 for approximately $10 million, according to publicly available information.
Where is Mar-a-Lago, exactly?
It’s located in Palm Beach, Florida. Mar-a-Lago is a resort and national historic landmark.
When was it first built?
It was built between 1924 and 1927.
What is the history of Mar-a-Lago?
“The Mar-a-Lago Estate was opened officially in January 1927 after four years of construction,” notes the website of Mar-a-Lago itself.
“Marjorie Merriweather Post (then Mrs. EF Hutton) searched for several years to find a proper location between the ocean and Lake Worth. The quest for a new home had begun when it became apparent that she was to be the dowager queen of Palm Beach ,” the site also explains.
“The site on which Mar-a-Lago sits is now considered the most valuable parcel of land anywhere in Florida.”
“At the time, there was little else here but undergrowth and swampy grounds, seemingly of not much use for a building site,” the website notes.
“With her realtor, Post crawled through underbrush of jungle-type growth in search of the perfect piece of property; the consequence of that search is the main house ‘Mar-a-Lago,’ which is Spanish for ‘Sea to Lake.’ “
Is Mar-a-Lago hurricane-resistant?
The structure is indeed “hurricane resistant,” the website of the mansion states.
How many acres does Mar-a-Lago have?
“The whole of the property comprises approximately 20 acres of perfectly landscaped lawns,” according to the Mar-a-Lago website.
How valuable is Mar-a-Lago?
“The site on which Mar-a-Lago sits is now considered the most valuable parcel of land anywhere in Florida,” says the property’s website.
When did Mar-a-Lago become a National Historic Site?
“In January 1969, the Department of the Interior designated the estate as ‘the Mar-a-Lago National Historic Site,'” says the website.
The property was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1972 by an Act of Congress.
Later, after Post passed away, “the estate was willed to the federal government for use as a diplomatic/presidential retreat. Ten years later, due to maintenance and security concerns, the government conferred title to the Post Foundation.”
What other details are known about Trump’s purchase of it?
“In 1985, Donald J. Trump purchased the property from the Post Foundation and used the estate as a private residence until 1995.”
Then, in April 1995, “Mar-a-Lago became established as the Mar-a-Lago Club. It is the last remaining Palm Beach estate still containing its buildings and land in almost identical form as its original conception,” the website makes clear.
“With the granting of easements to the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the Mar-a-Lago Club carries with it a built-in constituency that ensures its stewardship into the future.”
What else is there to know about Mar-a-Lago?
Trump keeps a section of the estate private for his family’s personal use.
It is the second-largest mansion in the state of Florida.
What is Mar-a-Lago’s value?
In 2018, Forbes valued the Mar-a-Lago estate at $160 million — or 16 times what Trump paid for it.
When did Mar-a-Lago become the main residence of Donald and Melania Trump?
In September 2019, Mar-a-Lago became the primary residence for Donald and Melania Trump.
They had previously maintained their primary residence in New York City.
What does membership at Mar-a-Lago include?
Membership includes “the use of the formal and casual dining areas, the Mar-a-Lago Spa, the pool, the Beach Club, breathtaking guest rooms and exclusive suites, a state-of-the-art fitness center, award-winning tennis courts, beautiful croquet lawns and an entertainment series, which hosts internationally world-renowned talent,” according to the property’s website.
What is the cost of Mar-a-Lago membership?
Reported in multiple places is a figure of approximately $200,000 to join and costs of $14,000 per year, although this is not noted on the Mar-a-Lago website itself.
What more about Mar-a-Lago can be shared?
The Mar-a-Lago Club sits on 20 acres of “manicured lawns, vibrant gardens and sweeping sea-to-lake vistas,” says the website.
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Also, “Mar-a-Lago is the only private club worldwide to attain the prestigious 6-Star Diamond Award from the American Academy of Hospitality Sciences, and is considered to be one of the world’s most sought after private clubs.”
Kerry J. Byrne contributed reporting to this article.