President Trump, who owns more hotel rooms than you’ll ever search on Trivago, could not get one for his stay in Hamburg during this week’s G-20 summit.
The annual summit location was announced for Germany’s second-largest city 17 months ago, back when no rational person thought the New York billionaire had a chance in Haiti of actually becoming the most powerful man in the world. Lo and behold, he did.
But he took office only on Jan. 20 this year, by which time there wasn’t an ice-machine room available in the German city of 1.7 million-plus.
Watch if some media attempt to gin up news stories that no hotel would take the American leader.
Of course, President Obama’s State Department, run by noted windsurfer and one-time presidential-election loser John Kerry, might possibly maybe conceivably have been tempted to raise the issue of July G-20 hotel reservations during the winter transition period that Obama promised would be so smooth. But it didn’t.
Now, you don’t just call up a hotel and book the presidential suite for any U.S. president. It must be large enough to house a presidential entourage, including staff and several shifts of men and women with curly cords escaping their ear. When Obama flew nine hours each way to his Hawaii holidays, he leased a house. Everyone else filled up Honolulu hotels, which wasn’t tough duty.
The Secret Service holds veto power over presidential accommodations, which must be large and secure enough from intruders, including potentially dangerous vehicles, with easily-reached exits in case of fire, and surrounding buildings and rooftops must be securable from oversight, etc. So, not just any manger will do.
If he can’t fly to Trump Tower each night or one of his own hotels is not available, Trump reportedly prefers Four Seasons, the Canadian chain. But the Saudi king and half of royal Riyadh booked that one a year ago.
So, what to do?
Angela Merkel’s German government stepped up and offered its Senate Guest House for the pain-in-the-neck Republican. His staff is staying at the American Consulate.
All of which is probably actually good, saving American taxpayers a boatload of Euros.
Big-shots on the Obama team, including First Lady Michelle Obama, had a habit of incurring huge luxury hotel bills while traveling abroad throughout their eight-year reign. During a single one-night stay in Paris, Vice President Joe Biden and his group ran up a taxpayer tab in excess of a half-million dollars. For one night.
Which is a lot of room service, movies and mini-bars.