October 13, 2021
The Miami-based CGI Merchant Group currently is in talks to pay ex-President Donald Trump’s family company around $370 million for the Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C.—which, during the last administration, attracted GOP lawmakers, lobbyists and other political attention-grabbers, The Wall Street Journal reports.
The Trump International Hotel Washington, D.C., is located in the former Old Post Office, a short walk down Pennsylvania Avenue from the White House in a building featuring some of the largest guest rooms in the capital.
The property is owned by the federal government, but with extensions the lease runs close to 100 years. CGI also has entered into discussions with hotel operators, including Hilton Worldwide Holdings’ Waldorf Astoria luxury brand, about removing the Trump name in favor of that of another hotel manager, NBC News sources said.
The lease deal could ultimately fetch closer to $400 million, which would represent roughly a doubling of the money the Trump Organization spent to convert the government building into a luxury hotel, said one of the people familiar with the matter.
The hotel sales talks have been heating up as Democratic-controlled House committees have been investigating and holding hearings on potential conflicts of interest and emoluments issues surrounding Trump.
The House Committee on Oversight and Reform has been examining the lease terms between the Trump Organization and the federal government’s General Services Administration for use of the Old Post Office. The deal predates Mr. Trump’s entry into national politics, but the committee is probing how well Trump managed conflicts of interest while president.
A Friday report from the House committee said the hotel lost more than $70 million between its opening in 2016 and last year—leading the company to inject at least $24 million in aid.
Research contact: @WSJ