NEW YORK CITY is packed with some of the most iconic tourist attractions in the world but there’s a hot new ticket in town – Trump Tower on Fifth Avenue.
Americans from out of state, Israeli teenagers, a tourist group from China and Europeans – all have been seen stopping off at the place that is the nerve center of Donald Trump’s maverick campaign to win the White House.
The presumptive Republican nominee and real estate tycoon lives in a marble triplex at the top of the 68 storey glass tower – a mini Versailles of gold leaf, columns, moldings and crystal chandeliers – with wife Melania.
The rest of the building is home, not just to his campaign for the presidency, but also his Trump Organization business empire, shops and apartments.
It was here that the billionaire announced his candidacy in a scene straight out of Hollywood on June 16 last year, back when no one took him seriously.
Thanks to an agreement that allowed Trump to build 20 stories higher, its massive marble atrium with a water- fall wall and dotted with mirrors is a public private space as stipulated by City Hall, like 500 others in New York.
As a result, passers-by are free to wander in until 10 pm most days – unless extra security is on hand because of events or high-profile visitors.
It is a temple to its creator. There is a Trump bar, Trump cafe, Trump restaurant and counters just inside the door selling Trump souvenirs – shirts, ties, cufflinks, scent and his business books.
Another boutique sells items from daughter Ivanka’s jewelry line.
However, the building’s other residents, some of them famous themselves, are protected from the crowd and have their own entrance around the corner on 56th Street.