The Trump Organization is in talks to sell its lease on the Trump International Hotel in Washington, DC, in a deal that would allow for a rebranding of the iconic 19th-century building and put its operations under new management, according to a report on Saturday.
The sale will likely net the Trump family less than the $500 million payday they sought when they first shopped the lease in 2019, an unnamed source told Axios, which did not report a new figure.
The hotel is housed in the former Old Post Office Pavilion, a 122-year-old structure near the National Mall that is owned by the federal government.
The Trump Organization leased it from the General Services Administration in 2013 and gave it a $250 million renovation before opening it to guests in 2016 — weeks before the presidential election that swept Trump into the White House.
As president, Trump hosted dozens of dinners in the hotel’s restaurant, and caught flak from ethics watchdogs for encouraging administration officials to visit the facility. One group, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, logged 973 visits to the hotel by public officials during Trump’s term in office.
“People are objecting to us making so much money on the hotel, and therefore we may be willing to sell,” son Eric Trump told the Wall Street Journal in 2019, when the family first put the lease on the market.
But revenues dropped by 60 percent in 2020 as the coronavirus pandemic ground travel to a halt, the Washington Post reported.