Connect with us

Golf

Mar-a-Lago, golf courses? Which Florida Trump properties could get seized by New York judge?

Published

on


Trump’s financial vise — he has until Monday to produce a $454 million bond — has fueled widespread speculation about the fate of his decades-long, high-profile real-estate portfolio.

play

Will Donald Trump pay up, or not? A post he issued Thursday on his social-media platform again railed against a New York court’s judgment and the state’s attorney general but gave no indication of his next step.

Trump complained in the post that “also, putting up money before an Appeal is VERY EXPENSIVE,” and would be costly should he win the appeal and not be able to regain real estate holdings he sold to fund the bond.

“If I sold assets, and then won the Appeal, the assets would be forever gone,” Trump wrote in the lengthy and bitter posting.

The presumptive Republican presidential nominee’s financial vise — he has until Monday to produce a $454 million bond — has fueled widespread speculation about the fate of his decades-long, high-profile real-estate portfolio.

Trump could, as New York Attorney General Letitia James suggested in a filing this week, comply with the bonding obligation with several lesser-amount financial instruments totaling the required total. Or he could, as Trump indicated he refused to do, sell assets.

James’ next move should Trump fail to comply is unclear, but her office has filed papers in Westchester County, N.Y., that could be a first step toward seizing properties. Legal and financial analysts have said James could seize Trump holdings.

Commercial and white-collar attorney Mitchell Epner told USA Today there is little Florida officials or state courts could do to stop New York authorities from seizing Trump’s out-of-state holdings.

“The courts of the other 49 states and the District of Columbia don’t really have discretion about whether or not to allow the New York judgment to be domesticated in that state, because the Constitution has something called ‘the full faith and credit clause,’ which requires each state to give full faith and credit to the judgment of the other states,” he said. There are only some “exceedingly narrow” exceptions to that, he said.

The former president has marquee properties in South Florida, including Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach. Here is a rundown of the two South Florida properties Trump owns, the one he leases and the one he does not control.

Election 2024: Former president wins third straight Fla primary. But about the ‘never’ Trump vote?

Mar-a-Lago club on Palm Beach

Trump bought the Palm Beach estate where he runs a private club and, since 2019, counts as his official residence in 1985.

During his one-term presidency, the opulent Mediterranean-style property was dubbed the Southern White House. Trump visited the property more than 30 times as president, including for summits with Chinese President Xi Jinping, the late Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, and former Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro.

After leaving the presidency, Trump kept classified and other documents at the property. In 2023, he was indicted for crimes related to his possession of those docuemnts and obstructing their return in a case now being heard in federal court in Fort Pierce.

Mar-a-Lago was a focus of the New York business fraud case that resulted in a judgement and order to post the bond while the case is appealed. State Judge Arthur Engoron said he based his $18 million to $27 million valuation of Mar-a-Lago off of the Palm Beach County Property Appraiser’s Office. Trump has claimed the estate is valued at $1 billion, but Engoron said the lower valuation is more accurate because of property restrictions Trump agreed to that would not allow subdivisions or even more varied private uses.

Engoron pointed out that in 1995 Trump, then a real-estate mogul, “gave up the right to use Mar-a-Lago for any purpose other than as a social club” by agreeing to a “Deed of Conservation and Preservation.”

Seven years later, the order noted Trump also “granted a conservation easement to the National Trust for Historic Preservation.” Engeron wrote that the agreement placed limits on further alterations to the property, including being able to subdivide the land for “any purpose,” among them building single-family homes. That agreement also restricted the interior renovations that could be necessary to boost its value in a future sale.

About that Trump bond: Trump plans office complex at his Trump National Golf Club in Jupiter

Trump National Golf Club in Jupiter

Trump purchased the Jupiter golf club in 2012, which was previously the Ritz-Carlton club, for $5 million, and this week the Trump Organization confirmed that he plans to build a $15 million office complex on the site.

The golf property features an 18-hole course designed by Jack Nicklaus. As president, Trump took Abe, an avid golfer, to play on the course. The clubhouse, according to the Trump Organization website, “features an immaculate ballroom, world-class dining, luxurious pool complex and rejuvenating spa for the entire family to enjoy.”

It is, like other Trump properties, available for weddings and other events, and lists a 10,000-square-foot Crystal Ballroom with “crystal chandeliers and exquisite floor-to-ceiling windows.”

Trump International Golf Club in suburban West Palm Beach

The golf club is Trump’s go-to fairway and green when he is in Palm Beach. And it’s where he hosts his annual Super Bowl party.

But he does not own the land on which the club is located.

Trump has a decades-long lease with Palm Beach County for the more than 200 acres. The lease of the central Palm Beach County land dates to the 1990s and a $75 million lawsuit he filed against the county prompted by his ire over noise from planes flying over Mar-a-Lago from nearby Palm Beach International Airport.

The lawsuit was resolved in 1996 with a long lease on 214 acres just south of the airport. In 2002, the county struck a deal to lease Trump more land for a nine-hole golf course.

The agreements require Trump to make monthly payments that have increased over the years.

Trump National Doral in Miami-Dade County

The resort, club and golf course is home to the famed “Blue Monster,” which will test the sport’s best next month at a LIV Golf tournament to be held at the location.

But the property has been equally linked to Trump’s political career. In 2019, then-President Trump drew significant pushback when he said he wanted to host a planned 2020 G7 global meeting at Trump National Doral, which is west of Miami International Airport.

A year earlier, a gunman opened fire in the lobby of the Trump National resort. Police at the time said the shooter shouted anti-Trump statements while firing gunshots at the roof and chandeliers. The gunman was wounded in a gunfire exchange with police, and one officer broke his arm in the confrontation. No employees or guests were injured.

Two years before that, it was in a Doral resort ballroom where then-candidate Trump infamously called on Russian hackers to unearth Democratic rival Hillary Clinton’s disappeared emails.

“Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing,” he said at the July 2016 news conference. “I think you will probably be rewarded mightily by our press.”

Trump later claimed it was a joke. But the statement was raised by former Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report on Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.

Trump International Beach Resort

Located in Sunny Isles, north of Miami Beach, the property is branded with the Trump name, but Trump does not own it.

Antonio Fins is a politics and business editor at The Palm Beach Post, part of the USA TODAY Florida Network. You can reach him at afins@pbpost.comHelp support our journalism. Subscribe today.

Continue Reading