No One Knew What to Expect
On November 7, 2016, the nation sat glued to the television as election results rolled in from around the country. As news stations filled in their electoral maps with states turning red, it became apparent that Donald Trump would become the 45th President of the United States. In Palm Beach, where Trump had lived seasonally for thirty years, it wasn’t clear how things were going to change. President Trump trips were coming, and no one knew what to expect.
A History of Influence
Donald Trump has been ruffling Palm Beach’s feathers for the last thirty years. He purchased Mar-a-Lago, one of the most famous properties on the island, in 1985. In 1995, he turned the mansion into a private club. In a major first for clubs on the island, it had a membership policy that did not exclude people because of race or creed. Several years ago Trump began flying an American flag that exceeded the town’s guidelines. When he didn’t take the flag down, the town gave him $250 a day fines. There’s a long list of things Trump has done which have been met with the town’s chagrin. As Vanity Fair wrote in a lengthy article on the topic, Trump always comes out on top.
An Heiress’s Dream Comes True
One silver lining of Trump bringing the presidency to Mar-a-Lago is that it fulfills a forgotten legacy. Merriweather Post, of post cereals, built the massive estate in the 1920s. According to the L.A. Times, when she passed away, she bequeathed the property to the government, hoping it would become a winter White House. As a precedent, the press had named John F. Kennedy’s home on the north end a “Winter White Hosue.” Trump has finally brought the White House moniker back to Palm Beach.
Locals See Changes Day to Day
Nearly halfway into Trump’s first year as president, he has changed the way things run in Palm Beach. A1A, one of the nation’s most beautiful seaside streets, is closed off near the Winter White House. When Trump attends church service at Bethesda by the Sea, metal detectors and increased security greet parishioners at the door. Palm Beach has always been host to the powerful, rich, and famous. Lately, the extra security a president regularly brings to the island bothers some who have lived in the community for a long time. Over the last few months, the effects of President Trump trips have included traffic congestion, increased police presence, road closures, and a growing number of protestors and supporters who line Southern Boulevard waiting for the Trump’s motorcade.
President Trump Trips Immediate Economic Effect
NPR reported that President Trump’s trips to Palm Beach had caused some disruptions to life and business on the island. The Lantana Airport reports that it has lost over a hundred thousand dollars in revenue since President Trump trips have shut down their operations each weekend. The local government feels the squeeze as well. Every time Trump returns to Florida, Palm Beach County spends more than $60,000 a day to accommodate the visits. Many argue that Trump should foot the bill. A local news station reports that Palm Beach County is considering a special tax on Mar-a-Lago to help pay the bills.
Any Publicity is Good Publicity
Some complain about the impact of President Trump trips on their commute. Others look to the future dividends such attention has brought to the area. News vans flock to the causeway on Bingham Island to broadcast live with Mar-a-Lago in the background. The media has brought a lot of free publicity to the Palm Beaches. This free publicity isn’t just catching the eye of the nation, either. The whole world is looking at Palm Beach when the leader of the free world comes for the weekend. When the rest of the northern hemisphere looks out of the window, they see winter taking its toll. At the same time, newscasters are filling their television screens with images of sunny South Florida.
Palm Beach Properties Rising from Nothing
Palm Beach would not exist if Henry Flagler hadn’t looked in an almanac one cold winter. He saw that the average February temperature in South Florida was a balmy mid-seventies. Flager built a railroad and two hotels that brought many of the North’s elite down for an escape from the winter. Soon, Palm Beach County became a playground for the rich and famous. Thanks to Flagler’s foresight, property values in Palm Beach became some of the highest in the world.
Palm Beach Property Values Rising from Trump Visits
Now, thanks to President Trump, property values in Palm Beach are expected to rise even further. In a report by CNN Money, businesses are seeing an uptick in traffic as people come to the island for President Trump trips. Worth Avenue has seen increased walk-in traffic, and hotel bookings are up since last year. Influential people from all over the world are turning their eyes to the small barrier island of Palm Beach and are seeing something wonderful. If you’re thinking about investing in a property in Palm Beach, so is everyone else. Now is the time to invest in a rising property market. Contact Scott Gordon Realty and experience Palm Beach living.