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Former Vogue Editor Describes Her Harrowing 13 Years There


Kirstie Clements

Sure, Anna Wintour doesn't say much. She's been known to Tweet (on one occasion), but it's not every day we get a sneak peek into the inner workings of the world's most well-known fashion mag.

Lucky for us fans, though, there's Kirstie Clements — a former editor of the magazine's Australian edition. After being, erm, let go from her position as editor-in-chief in 2012, Clements has published a tell-all memoir called The Vogue Factor, and you can bet it's juicy. 

Clements maintains the book is not about getting revenge; rather, it recounts the daily life and inner workings of a magazine as experienced by its head honcho. There are parties, there are front row seats, there are perks beyond perks — but, as always, there's a dark side. She talks about models who regularly require hospital drips, and others who endure three-day photoshoots without a single meal. And, not surprisingly, the same standards that lead to such extremes apply to the editors, as well. In a world where Anna Dello Russo and Carine Roitfeld are regular fodder for industry arbiters of cool like Olivier Zham and Scott Schuman, Clements describes editors' dinners and conferences as "every woman’s worst nightmare" (though she somehow managed to stay pretty down-to-Earth through it all). 

And though her book isn't spiteful overall, she does express some serious doubts about the female ideals pushed by the magazine, saying that some of the couture gowns they received for photoshoots were so small, "they resemble christening robes." She goes on to explain that, on the subject of extreme dieting and anorexia, she "felt complicit...in my experience it is impossible to get a photographer or a fashion editor to acknowledge the repercussions of using very thin girls. They don’t want to. For them, it’s all about the drama of the photograph. They convince themselves that the girls are just genetically blessed, or have achieved it through yoga and goji berries." 

And on the subject of the mysterious Ms. Wintour, Clements has plenty to say. "On the few occasions we were introduced," she says, Wintour's "sense of froideur was palpable. The deference she commands from people is astonishing to watch. There appears to exist some kind of psychological condition that causes seemingly sane and successful adults to prostrate themselves in her presence."

All told, it was a harrowing 13 years for Clements — but she seems to have come out of it unscathed, and well-adjusted. And while it can't feel good to see your magazine change hands (Vogue Australia was acquired by Rupert Murdoch's News Unlimited shortly before her termination) and your job disappear to boot, with this juicy book on the market, we doubt she'll be hankering for a paycheck any time soon. (The Daily Mail)

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Chinese Counterfeiters Have Even Knocked Off A Giant Rubber Duck


China is known for it's hilariously bad knock-off, be they accessories, technology, or even architecture.

And now we can add another imitation to the list: Dutch conceptual artist Florentijn Hofman's "Rubber Duck."

At least ten scaled replicas of the artist's creation have appeared all over China after the artist displayed his inflatable installation in Hong Kong last month, according to Reuters.

They have popped up in Zhejiang province, Henan province, Liaoning province, and Shanghai, among other places.

Some photos of the counterfeit rubber duckies, below:

A 43 foot duck in Shenyang, Liaoning province for the Dragon Boat Festival.

COUNTERFEIT floating duck in China Florentijn Hofman

A 50 foot duck in a river in Wenzhou, Zhejiang province being held up by a crane.

COUNTERFEIT floating duck in China Florentijn Hofman

An undercover duck hanging out with a vendor in Shanghai.

COUNTERFEIT floating duck in China Florentijn Hofman

And a duck watching a laborer walk through an artificial lake in Luoyang, Henan province.

COUNTERFEIT floating duck in China Florentijn Hofman

SEE ALSO: QUIZ: Can You Spot The Knock-Off Handbags, Shoes, And Gadgets?

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Ex-Tiffany Executive Arrested In Connecticut Home, Accused Of Stealing $1.3 Million In Jewelry


Ingrid Lederhaas-Okun

NEW YORK (AP) — A former executive with Tiffany & Co. stole a little blue box bounty from the jeweler's midtown Manhattan headquarters and resold it for more than $1.3 million, federal authorities said Tuesday.

Ingrid Lederhaas-Okun was arrested Tuesday at her home in Darien, Conn. She was to appear later in the day in federal court in Manhattan to face charges of wire fraud and interstate transportation of stolen property.

As vice president of product development, Lederhaas-Okun had authority to "check out" jewelry from Tiffany to provide to potential manufacturers to determine production costs. Authorities allege that after she left Tiffany in February, the company discovered she had checked out 164 items that were never returned.

According to a criminal complaint, the missing jewelry included "numerous diamond bracelets in 18-carot gold; diamond drop and hoop earrings in platinum or 18-carot gold; diamond rings in platinum; rings with precious stones in 18-carot gold; and platinum and diamond pendants."

When confronted about the missing jewelry, Lederhaas-Okun claimed that she had left some of it behind at Tiffany and that some had been lost or damaged, the complaint said. But an investigation found that Lederhaas-Okun resold the goods to an unidentified international dealer for more than $1.3 million, it said.

Bank records showed that since January 2011, the dealer wrote 75 checks to her or her husband for amounts of up to $47,400, the complaint said. Investigators also recovered purchase forms signed by Lederhaas-Okun that said the items were her personal property.

Authorities allege Lederhaas-Okun purposely checked out items valued at under $10,000 apiece to avoid detection. The company takes a daily inventory of all checked-out items worth more than $25,000.

If convicted, Lederhaas-Okun faces up to 20 years in prison. The name of her attorney wasn't immediately available.

Tiffany representatives declined to comment Tuesday.

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Michael Jordan Just Knocked $8 Million Off The Asking Price Of His Mansion In Chicago


michael jordan chicago home for sale

Michael Jordan put his Chicago mansion on the market in February 2012 for $29 million and hasn't been able to get it off his hands.

Jordan must really want to sell the place, because according to Realtor.com, he just dropped that asking price to $21 million.

As you would expect anything Michael Jordan, the place is awesome. There is a gorgeous basketball court, a full weight room, a tennis court and a huge outdoor patio. There are three climate controlled garages with space for 15 cars, a pool and a three-bedroom guest house.

The view out front

A reminder of the former owner

Basketball court

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31 Reasons Why Everyone Who Lives In New York Should Actually Live In Jersey City Instead


Jersey City New Jersey

Every time someone I know gets a job in New York, they always move to Brooklyn. 

I have no idea why. Brooklyn is overpriced, inauthentic and hard to get to. I blame the show "Girls"for the misconception that it's a great place to live. 

And unless you're a member of the lower aristocracy, there's no way you're comfortably living in Manhattan fresh out of school.

When the local paper of record is writingmultipletrendpiecesabout people enthusiastically living in glorified closets, you know something is seriously screwed up about your real estate market. 

However, there is an answer. Across the river from Manhattan, a brief PATH ride away, is a modern paradise of inexpensive rents, authentic humans, and thriving culture. 

If you're working in New York on a budget, you're a complete fool to live there and not in Jersey City. Here's why. 

1. Jersey City is enjoying a major renaissance as more people disgusted with New York City prices move across the Hudson, similar to what happened with Brooklyn not too long ago.

2. Besides lots of available rental real estate, luxury condos are shooting up all over town.

3. It's easy to see why. The PATH train makes Jersey City more accessible to Midtown (6th Ave from 9th Street to 33rd) and Downtown Manhattan (WTC) than most parts of Brooklyn.

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A Massive Whale Hunt On The Faroe Islands Turns The Sea Red Every Summer


Whaling Faroe Islands

It's about the time of year when hunters on Faroe Island, an archipelago in the North Atlantic, are gearing up for the annual whale drive, when several hundred pilots whales are slaughtered for their meat and blubber as part of a 1,000-year-old tradition.

Haunting images of local residents slashing whales, turning the water red with blood, have fueled protests from environmental activists who say the hunt is cruel.

Islanders fight to preserve their tradition of killing pilot whales, which sustains a key part of their diet.

The Faroe Islands are located in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, about halfway between Scotland and Iceland. It consists of 18 islands — 17 that are inhabited by around 48,000 people.

Source: Faroe Islands Ministry of Fisheries

The islands are largely self-sufficient. The Faroese economy is supported by local agriculture and hunting. Pilot whales, in particular, are a valued part of the national diet and have long been killed for their meat and blubber.

Source: Faroe Islands Ministry of Fisheries

The annual whale hunt, called "grind," dates back more than 1,000 years to the first Norse settlements.

Source: Faroe Islands Ministry of Fisheries

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A Complete Breakdown Of Donald Trump's Net Worth


donald trump

In the peach- and white-veined marble lobby of Trump Tower on Fifth Avenue, tourists can shop for items from Donald Trump’s clothing line and buy his best-selling book, “Trump: the Art of the Deal.”

In the Trump Organization’s offices on the 26th floor, the walls are decorated with images of “The Apprentice” star on the covers of magazines, from Esquire to Playboy.

And at the top of the building lies Trump’s personal residence, a gold- and marble-clad Louis XIV–style penthouse spread over three floors, where the 67-year-old real estate developer lives with his wife Melania, a former model, and their seven-year-old son, Barron (a child who is reportedly swabbed with caviar-enhanced moisturizer each night before bed).

It’s easy to see how life behind those gold-plated doors could lead to an inflated sense of self, and even in an industry full of billionaires, the outspoken Trump is known for his ego.

An example of his trademark bravado: In an interview at Trump Tower last month, Trump told The Real Deal that he’s only interested in acquiring one-of-a-kind, über-luxury properties.

“Unless it’s going to be iconic, I have no interest,” he said. “The word ‘trophy’ is not even good enough.”

In addition, he said: “I would not be surprised if my cash position was stronger than anyone in the [real estate] industry.”

But many are skeptical of such claims of grandiose wealth, and over the years, the question of Trump’s actual net worth has become a controversial one. Trump has accused both Forbes magazine and “TrumpNation” author Timothy O’Brien of under-estimating his wealth. (He filed a defamation suit in 2006 against O’Brien, who had estimated Trump’s net worth at between $150 and $250 million, claiming that the assertions in his book were inaccurate and had cost the Trump Organization deals. The suit was eventually dismissed.)

Among the most outspoken skeptics of Trump’s claims are those in the New York City real estate industry, who note that he no longer owns many property assets here. Trump is well known for building Trump Tower, of course, and for developing a number of residential high-rises, such as Trump Park Avenue at 502 Park Avenue and Trump World Tower at 845 United Nations Plaza, from the late 1980s to the early 2000s. But most of those properties have long since been sold to individual unit owners. And Trump hasn’t bought or developed any New York City buildings in recent years.

Meanwhile, a Trump Organization spokesperson confirmed that Trump also no longer owns the properties he inherited from his late father, Fred, who started the family real estate business in outer-borough neighborhoods like Coney Island, Sheepshead Bay and Flushing. The Trump Organization sold most of those buildings in 2004, according to a spokesperson.

“Donald Trump is not a major player in New York City real estate,” said Jordan Barowitz, director of external affairs at the Durst Organization. “My guess is [that he owns] about 1.5 million square feet total. For comparison, the Durst Organization owns 13 million square feet in Manhattan.” (In fact, Trump owns more than 2 million square feet of commercial space in New York City.) Or as Michael T. Cohen, president of the tri-state region at Colliers International, put it: “Trump casts a very large image on the real estate scene considering that he only has [a few large] assets.”

But others noted that Trump has an asset most developers don’t: fame.

“Consumers know his name,” said fellow billionaire and New York real estate titan Richard LeFrak. “That’s what sets him apart.”

And Trump has an uncanny knack for parlaying that fame into various money-making opportunities.

Trump “understands people,” said Steve Roth, chairman of real estate giant Vornado Realty Trust. “He understands what they want to buy, and what they don’t want to buy.”

The Trump Organization concedes that there’s an air of mystery surrounding its portfolio, which includes core real estate assets in New York and internationally as well as an array of unrelated enterprises, such as the Miss Universe pageant and “The Apprentice” television franchise. Much of the confusion stems from the fact that Trump frequently licenses his name to products — and buildings — he has not developed and does not own, such as the hotel and condominium Trump Soho in Manhattan and the Trump International Hotel & Tower in Dubai.

Forbes’ most recent assessment put Trump’s total net worth at $3.2 billion, but the Trump Organization said the true figure, including the value of the Trump brand, is around $8.6 billion. In an attempt to prove it, the company provided TRD with a 2012 financial report prepared for Trump by his accountant, WeiserMazars, a major national firm. The report puts Trump’s total net worth at approximately $4.56 billion, including $1.38 billion worth of New York City commercial real estate; $351.55 million in New York residential properties; $1.57 billion in golf courses, resorts and related facilities across the world; and $823 million in interests in joint ventures. He also has some $451.7 million in debt and other commitments, plus personal cash and marketable securities in the amount of $169.7 million, according to WeiserMazars. In addition, and most controversially, the company said it believes the Trump brand is worth some $4 billion.

Using the WeiserMazars report and public records, as well as information provided by industry sources, TRD has inventoried Trump’s most significant real estate assets. The Trump Organization declined to provide the net operating income or the estimated dollar value of any of its individual properties to The Real Deal. The WeiserMazars report didn’t provide values for each individual asset, but instead grouped assets into categories and then provided figures for those categories. (As a sidenote, several assets straddled different categories.) Finally, we also asked industry insiders to estimate what individual assets are worth. Read on for a closer look.

The Trump Brand
Trump’s estimated value: $4 billion

n the Trump Organization’s eyes, its most valuable asset is the Trump name itself. For decades, Donald Trump has diligently cultivated his brand, and he’s now a TV star in his own right due to the ongoing success of “The Apprentice,” which is now in its 13th season.

It’s not all theoretical. Trump has found numerous ways to monetize his brand. Most notably, he’s licensed his name to no less than 17 different kinds of products, from clothing and perfume to vodka and mattresses, as well as glassy high-rise towers as far afield as Istanbul and the Philippines.

At projects such as the Trump Soho hotel/condominium at 246 Spring Street (developed by a partnership between the Bayrock Group and New York City developer Tamir Sapir) Trump is paid for the use of his name, but does not invest any of his own capital. Trump sometimes manages these projects, as he did in the case of Trump Soho, and always takes a licensing fee of $5 to $10 million, according to news reports. In some cases, he also takes a portion of potential future sales at the building.

Trump’s most recent licensing deal, announced last month, is for a hotel and condo tower in downtown Vancouver.

Terms of the agreements made with the developers of Trump-branded properties vary, and the Trump Organization declined to provide details of all the specific arrangements. But the company did say it has some $74.14 million worth of real estate licensing deals. And publicly available court records reveal that Trump pocketed more than $3.2 million in royalties for his clothing line, which is sold at Macy’s, between 2005 and 2007.

Sources agreed that these licensing deals are likely very profitable.

“If you can make licensing deals work, it’s a beautiful thing,” said developer Izak Senbahar of New York–based Alexico Group, which is currently developing the condo 56 Leonard, which will be the tallest building in Tribeca. “You’re not taking the risk, you’re only giving your name and taking a fee plus upside.”

He added: “You have to give [Trump] credit for creating such a brand. Who else can go to Panama City or Istanbul and license their name that way?”

LeFrak compared the licensing deals to “going to the box office and taking [a share of] the gross.”

“He’s using something he has to his best advantage,” LeFrak said. “It’s very clever what he’s been able to do.”

But Trump has faced criticism for these licensing deals, which have occasionally landed him in legal trouble with buyers. In 2011, for instance, buyers at three separate Trump-branded properties, including the Trump International Hotel and Tower Fort Lauderdale, sued the mogul for allegedly misleading them into believing he was the developer and later pulling his name from the projects once they went belly-up. The Trump Organizations denies those claims. Some of those lawsuits, however, are still ongoing.

And Trump has not put his name on a U.S. property since his Soho project began construction in 2007, leading some branding experts to speculate that it no longer holds the same weight it once did in the U.S.

James Fox, CEO of the strategy firm Red Peak Branding, which does work for large companies such as Intel and American Express, said the Trump Organization’s brand estimate of $4 billion “seems like a very high number given that, certainly in the U.S., his brand has been in pretty steady decline.”

The Trump brand likely had the most cachet in the 1980s and 1990s, he said, when “American capitalism was on the rise, and he was its poster boy. He acted kind of like a rock star, with beautiful women and beautiful cars. People aspired towards that, because all of culture was moving in that direction.”

Since the recession, however, American consumers are gravitating towards more humble, “authentic” brands, Fox said. In part, he said, that’s why Trump has started targeting consumers in other markets, which are more susceptible to what he called “the Trump idea of materialistic success.”

“All developing markets go through a period of conspicuous consumption,” Fox said. “There’s an emerging middle class, and people want to show and wear the wealth.” In response, Trump told The Real Deal that while he was “hot” in the 1980s, he was only “hotter” now, thanks in part to “The Apprentice.” The reason he does not do so many licensing deals in the U.S., he said, is because the economy is weak here and he’s focused on buying assets rather than licensing his name.

And the Trump Organization stands by its estimate of $4 billion for the brand, which came from a valuation the company commissioned six years ago from the brand strategy firm Predictiv. Predictiv pegged the value of Trump’s brand at $3 billion, and the Trump Organization estimated that it has increased to $4 billion since then.

Jon Low, a partner at Predictiv, said his analysis found that Trump-branded projects generally commanded prices and rents between 9 and 17 percent above the average for the areas in which they’re located.

“There are people who will pay a premium to stay at a Trump-branded property, even when other accommodations are available at a lower price,” Low said.

Office buildings and residential real estate
Trump’s estimated value: $2.9 billion

Donald Trump started out as a real estate developer, and property holdings do make up the lion’s share of his holdings (aside from his brand). The Trump Organization said it has a total of $2.9 billion worth of commercial and residential real estate. In addition to more than $74 million in real estate licensing deals, that includes $1.38 billion in New York City commercial buildings, $351.55 million in New York residential buildings and $823.3 million worth of real estate in joint ventures.

According to TRD’s research, however, these estimates may be slightly high. For example, while the Trump Organization values its combined interests in Trump Tower, Niketown, 40 Wall Street, 1290 Sixth Avenue and 555 California Street, located in San Francisco, at some $2.13 billion, industry experts said the total is likely closer to $1.86 billion.

Commercial real estate

Trump’s best-known — and likely most valuable — commercial real estate asset is his headquarters, Trump Tower, a 68-story mixed-use tower at 725 Fifth Avenue. The building, which is now 100 percent leased, was developed by a partnership of Trump and the Equitable Life Assurance Society of the United States in 1983, but Trump now has full control of the commercial and retail components of the tower, records show.

Robert Von Ancken, chairman of Landauer Appraisal Services, a division of Newmark Grubb Knight Frank, estimated the total value of Trump Tower’s commercial and retail spaces at $460 million. The Trump Organization said the building was refinanced for $100 million in August 2012, allowing Trump to take a cash distribution of over $73 million. The loan, with an interest rate of 4.2 percent, matures in 2022.

Another one of Trump’s major commercial assets is 40 Wall Street, a 1.3 million-square-foot office building where Trump has had the leasehold since 1995. Michael Cohen, in-house counsel at the Trump Organization, said the mogul had paid $1 million for the leasehold; other reports say $10 million.

Either way, the value of the leasehold has increased exponentially since Trump bought it; experts said it’s now worth $350 to $400 million. And the pre-tax net operating income at the building as of 2011 was $20.89 million, according to the Department of Finance, while expenses totaled $14.4 million. However, Trump has a $160 million mortgage attached to the property with an interest rate of 5.71 percent, according to WeiserMazars.

Tenants in the building include Countrywide Insurance, Walgreens/Duane Reade and the American Precious Metals Exchange. Industry insiders said that due to generous tenant incentives, some tenants are paying as little as $30 per square foot, despite official asking rents of roughly $50 a foot. Trump’s son Donald Trump, Jr., who heads commercial leasing at the property, told TRD that some tenants in the lower portions of the building are paying in the $30s per square foot but the overall average for the building is between $40 and $60 a foot.

Trump also has the leasehold at the Niketown building at 6 East 57th Street. The eight-story retail building, which abuts Trump tower, is the national flagship of sports brand Nike.

Von Ancken said Trump’s leasehold is likely worth some $200 million, taking into consideration the fact that Nike’s lease in the building expires in 2017. While there does not appear to be a mortgage on the property, the building serves as collateral for bonds held by Trump to the tune of $46.4 million, according to WeiserMazars.

Trump acquired the last two significant pieces of his commercial real estate holdings, 1290 Sixth Avenue and San Francisco’s 555 California Street, in an unusual way: through a property swap.

It all started in 1994, when Trump was facing foreclosure on the Riverside South residential high-rises he’d developed on Manhattan’s far West Side. He sold a majority interest in the buildings to a consortium of Hong Kong investors, who then made a deal to swap the properties with Extell Development and the Carlyle Group in exchange for 1290 Sixth Avenue and 555 California Street. Trump objected to the exchange, thinking it undervalued the Riverside South properties, but as a minority owner, he had no legal way to stop it. His name still adorns many of the Riverside South properties, for which he also has a management contract.

Today, Trump owns a 30 percent stake in both 1290 Sixth Avenue and 555 California Street. A 43-story trophy office tower, 1290 Sixth is worth $1.5 billion, Von Ancken said, with Trump’s stake worth around $450 million (without considering taxes or liabilities).

And 555 California Street, a 2 million-square-foot building with tenants such as Microsoft and AXA Equitable, would likely sell for around $800 per foot, or $1.36 billion, San Francisco brokers said. That makes Trump’s interest worth in excess of $400 million.

Residential real estate

The Trump Organization values its holdings in New York City residential properties at more than $350 million, according to WeiserMazars. But just as in commercial real estate, industry experts said that figure may be too high.

For example, Trump in 1995 paid $7.5 million for a 213-acre estate just outside the town of Bedford in Westchester County. Called Seven Springs, the property features a 13-bedroom mansion, but is also zoned to allow for the construction of 13 additional homes at the site.

Local brokers put the property’s value at around $40 million, noting that Westchester County’s highest-ever home price was the December sale of the 100-acre Devonshire estate for $21 million. The Trump Organization declined to give a specific figure but it said it believes the estate is worth more than seven times that, based on the projected cash flow it would derive from the sale of the 13 properties on the site.

Trump originally planned to build a golf club on the site, but revised those plans in the face of opposition from local authorities. The company has no immediate plans to build the houses, the company said, but may bring in a third party to develop them eventually. A mortgage on the property has an outstanding balance of $7.52 million, according to WeiserMazars.

Another significant part of Trump’s residential portfolio is the plethora of New York residential high-rises with the Trump name. There’s Trump Park Avenue, Trump World Tower, Trump Palace on East 69th Street, Trump Parc at 106 Central Park South, Trump Parc East at 100 Central Park South, Trump Plaza on 61st Street and Trump International Hotel & Tower at 1 Central Park West.

Upon seeing these buildings, passersby could be forgiven for thinking that Trump owns a huge swath of New York City. But most of the apartments in the properties are no longer owned by Trump: The majority are co-ops and condos that have long since sold out.

Trump does still own 23 apartments at Trump Park Avenue, which he rents for rates as high as $100,000 per month, and 19 units at Trump Parc.

And he also maintains ownership of most of the commercial and retail spaces in the buildings bearing his name. At Trump International, for example, Trump manages the hotel and condo portions of the building and owns the commercial elements of the property, including a garage facility and retail space, which currently houses the restaurant Jean Georges. Trump also retains rights to the rooftops of most of his buildings and leases the spaces to cell network providers such as Verizon for a fee.

The Trump Organization does have some debt on these properties, including a $22.2 million loan on the developer’s interest in Trump Park Avenue and an $8.3 million loan related to the commercial and retained residential portions of Trump Plaza.

Another major contributor to Trump’s wealth are his sprawling personal homes, each worth millions. Most significant of these is his personal apartment at Trump Tower. Occupying the 66th to 68th floors of the building, the triplex penthouse is decorated in diamond, 24-carat gold and marble, and features an interior fountain and a massive Italianate-style painting on the ceilings. Asked by The Real Deal what the apartment might be worth, Trump said only that if he were to put the property up for sale, it would most certainly be the priciest apartment on the market in New York City.

Douglas Elliman Chairman Howard Lorber estimated that the unit could sell for upwards of $100 million if it came on the market today, thanks to its location on Fifth Avenue and its likely appeal to foreign investors.

Trump’s other homes include a Beverly Hills mansion on Rodeo Drive. Lee Ziff, a Beverly Hills broker with Keller Williams, told TRD that the house is likely worth $8.5 to $10 million, though he said he has not seen the inside.

But the mogul also owns residential properties as investments rather than vacation spots. For example, he owns two private houses in Palm Beach, Fla., adjacent to his Mar-a-Lago country club. The houses, which are 4,643 square feet and 1,950 square feet, according to real estate website Zillow.com, are worth around $6.5 million and $3 million, estimated Jonathan Harris, an agent at Valore Group Real Estate in Palm Beach.

And a slick business maneuver recently allowed him to nab a major residential asset for a major discount: the 2,000-acre Kluge estate in Charlottesville, Va.

Formerly owned by media billionaire John Kluge and his wife, Patricia, the property features a 23,000-square-foot mansion but is also a functioning commercial winery and vineyard.

Facing default following her husband’s death, Patricia Kluge put the estate on the market for $100 million about four years ago. Her lender, Bank of America, seized the property before she could unload it.

Trump bought the property out of foreclosure in 2011, paying only $7.9 million for the vineyard, winery and its equipment, and the land surrounding the house; those assets alone were valued by the bank at $60 million.

The 45-room mansion, meanwhile, was on the market for $16 million. In a bid to get it for far less, Trump let the property’s grounds become overgrown so they’d be unappealing to buyers. Eventually, he convinced the bank to sell him the house — for just $6.5 million. Ultimately, Trump paid a total $14.4 million for the entire property, now known as Trump Vineyard Estates and managed by Eric Trump.

Resorts, country clubs and golf courses
Trump’s estimated value: $1.57 billion

In recent years, Trump has invested heavily in “lifestyle properties” such as golf courses, resorts and country clubs. He owns at least 13 golf courses across the globe, including the 1,200-acre Trump International Golf Links in Scotland.

Putting a dollar figure on the value of these assets is tricky, however, because many of them come with development rights or the potential for other uses. The Trump Organization values its combined interests in these club facilities and related lifestyle properties at roughly $1.57 billion, according to WeiserMazars.

Among the most valuable of these assets is the Doral Resort & Spa in South Florida, which Trump bought out of bankruptcy for $150 million last year in another fire sale acquisition. The 800-acre property includes five golf courses, 700 hotel rooms, meeting and conference space, a 50,000-square-foot spa and an extensive retail component. Based on current prices in the Miami area, where land has been trading at close to $20 per square foot, real estate experts said the current value of the land alone at Doral could exceed $1 billion. Trump has a $125 million loan on the property, according to WeiserMazars.

Another significant holding is the oceanfront Trump National Golf Club in Los Angeles at Palos Verdes, where Trump has development rights to build 75 homes adjacent to the course. Trump told The Real Deal that he’d already sold five of the lots for up to $5 million apiece but was not actively looking to sell more.

At Trump National Golf Club Westchester in Briarcliff Manor, Trump has rights to develop 87 luxury condos. Sixteen of those have already sold for $1.5 million to $2.45 million, according to the Trump Organization, which said it has no immediate plans to build the remaining properties.

While golf courses seem to be one of Trump’s primary interests right now, he also has interests in other kinds of lifestyle properties. For example, in Florida he owns the Mar-a-Lago country club, a 17-acre property with a 20,000-square-foot ballroom, which has played host to celebrities such as Michael Jackson, Celine Dion and Oprah. Commercial real estate brokers said it was difficult to determine a value for such an idiosyncratic asset, for which there are few comparables. Taking a stab, Harris said the property could ask as much as $250 million if it came on the market today.

Some of the properties in this category haven’t always been positive additions to Trump’s balance sheet.

In Nevada, Trump owns a 50 percent interest in Trump International Hotel Las Vegas, which he developed alongside real estate and casino mogul Phil Ruffin. Originally designed as a condominium, the property now operates primarily as a hotel; when it opened in 2008, the units sold rapidly but buyers couldn’t close once the crisis hit. Trump and Ruffin ended up high and dry with 900 units they couldn’t sell, Ruffin told The Real Deal.

“It was negative for a while,” Ruffin said in a phone interview last month. “Without the [Trump] brand, we probably would have let it go.”

Trump and Ruffin are close to closing a deal for 300 of the building’s units with a division of Hilton, which will use them as timeshare properties, Ruffin said. Hilton will pay around $100 million, he said. Ruffin said the deal would eradicate most of the partnership’s debt on the building, and that he and Trump will then be left with between 500 and 600 units, which will continue to be operated as a hotel.

And in Atlantic City, a portfolio of properties along the boardwalk that bear the Trump name are the source of the widespread misconception that Trump at one point went personally bankrupt.

Trump bought the portfolio, now known as Trump Taj Mahal Hotel & Casino, in 1987. The property’s ownership entity, Trump Entertainment Resorts, filed for bankruptcy four times between 1991 and 2009. After the first bankruptcy, the company went public and Trump began reducing his stake in it, from 36.6 percent in 1991 to just 5 percent today, the Trump Organization said. He is also no longer chairman of the company’s board.

Entertainment and other assets
Trump’s estimated value: $317.6 million

Trump also owns a wide variety of other enterprises outside the realm of real estate. For example, the real estate magnate owns the Miss Universe, Miss USA and Miss Teen USA pageants, which the Trump Organization said are collectively worth a total of $15 million.

In addition, he owns a talent and modeling agency, Trump Model Management, and 50 percent of the value of the rights to “The Apprentice,” which he shares with producer Mark Burnett and on which he’s been focusing much of his time and attention of late. He also owns several airplanes, including a Boeing 757 and a Cessna Citation X.

But regardless of how many planes or buildings he has, Trump has made one thing clear over the years, which accounts for a significant portion of his wealth: he knows how to stay in the spotlight.

More from The Real Deal:

1. If you live in New York and you rent, you’re paying a huge tax you don’t even know about 
2. A first look at Cary Tamarkin’s High Line project: PHOTOS
3. Chelsea Park rents out in 10 weeks 

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The Sexiest Wall Streeters Alive


Ricky SandlerSuccess on Wall Street means watching your ideas and work in action while making a sizable amount of money in the process.

That in and of itself is impressive, but there are some people on Wall Street that take that to the next level — they make the Street look sexy.

From bank CEOs to hedge funders and beyond, we found the 32 sexiest people in finance.

With a combination of success, power, generosity, good looks, fashion sense, and personality, these people are the full package.

#32 David Tepper

Age: 55

Firm: President and Founder, Appaloosa Management

Education: BA, University of Pittsburgh; MBA, Carnegie Mellon University

Tepper, who runs a $12 billion distressed-debt hedge fund, has one of the best long-term track records. In 2012, he was up 30%, while a lot other funds struggled to find alpha. He was also the best paid hedge fund manager last year. 

He has made headlines this year by coming out as massively bullish on U.S. equities

Aside from his investing acumen, Tepper has an incredible sense of humor. The former high school musical star even broke out in song on live TV.

#31 Brady Dougan

Age: 53

Firm: CEO, Credit Suisse Group

Education: BA, MBA, University of Chicago

Dougan has been making comments this year that banker pay is outpacing shareholder returns. He told Bloomberg TV, "That’s not sustainable. That’s not right."

Dougan got a 34% raise in 2012, taking home $8.2 million. In 2011 he took a 69% pay cut, taking home $3.3 million. The bank's board pointed out in its annual report that year that he was "taking real and direct accountability" for the bank's lackluster earnings and share performance.  

Outside of the office, he's a marathoner with a passion for long distance running. We hear that he's also frequently spotted lifting weights in the morning at the bank. 

#30 Mary Callahan Erdoes

Age: 46

Firm: CEO, JPMorgan Asset Management

Education: BA, Georgetown University; MBA, Harvard University

Erdoes, whose $2 trillion unit acts independently, bet against the "London Whale" trade that lost JPMorgan's CIO office billions, according to DealBook.

She also got a compensation package larger than JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Kate Middleton Is Due To Give Birth Next Week And The Paparazzi Is Already Camped Out


Kate Middleton's due date isn't until July 11, but paparazzi aren't taking any chances of losing out on the year's most-anticipated photo-op.

Dozens of photogs are setting up their equipment and jockeying for prime positions in case Middleton gives birth early.

Kate Middleton baby paparazzi hospital

Some are even already standing outside in anticipation with cameras in-hand.

Kate Middleton baby paparazzi hospital

Middleton will give birth to the future heir to the British throne in the same St. Mary's hospital where the late Princess Diana gave birth to Princes William and Harry.

Kate Middleton baby paparazzi hospital

Until then, parking has been suspended outside the Lindo Wing of the hospital.

Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospital Kate Middleton baby

Inside the hospital, birthing suites offer a satellite TV, radio, safe, bedside phone, Internet access and a refrigerator.

Royal doctor Marcus Setchell is expected to deliver the royal baby after postponing his retirement, reports the Mirror.

A source close to Marcus, who served as the Queen’s gynecologist for 18 years until 2008, told the Sunday People: “Marcus says he will retire after the baby is born but because he knows they are planning more children, he will probably have to take time out of his retirement to deliver those too."

The royal baby's birth will then be announced via a bulletin on an easel behind the gates of Buckingham Palace announcing, "Her Royal Highness the Duchess of Cambridge was safely delivered of a child," according to UsWeekly's royal source.

"There will be gun salutes, flag flying and bell pealing," adds the palace aide. "It's very exciting."

The couple still do not reportedly know the sex of their unborn baby.

When the first-time parents leave the hospital, the aide promises that the 31-year-old royals "will pose with the baby for pictures."

In the meantime, Middleton has been dividing her time between her home in Anglesey, Wales, and Nottingham Cottage in London.

Should the Duchess go into labor early, a helicopter will fly her 70 minutes away to London's St. Mary's Hospital, where she hopes to give birth naturally, according to an UsWeekly source. 

After the baby is born, Prince William will take a two-week paternity leave from his Royal Air Force duties in Wales and spend time with his family, who will be shuttling between London and Middleton's parents' place in Berkshire.

Come September, the trio will move to Kensington Palace's Apartment 1, where a nursery awaits.

SEE ALSO: 20 Iconic Photos Of Kate Middleton & Prince William's Royal Life

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John Carney Went On An Epic Twitter Rant About Why You Shouldn't Move To Jersey City


John Carney

Earlier today, we published a list of reasons people who move to New York City to work should give Jersey City a shot.

While the response was overwhelmingly positive from people on the west side of the Hudson, those paying to live on the East side took issue with the positive evaluation of a non-New York city.  

John Carney, who runs NetNet at CNBC, was chief in taking issue with our assessment of any positive points for Jersey City. He went on an epic rant which raised a number of compelling arguments. 

See for yourself. 

































 Worth noting:



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The Real Life Buildings That Helped Inspire The Monsters University Campus


Monsters University Campus

Monsters University has dominated the box office since its release two weeks ago and part of its success may be due to the extraordinary effort the Pixar animation team put in to make the movie as realistic as possible, even down the titular college campus setting.

In preparation for the film, the California-based Pixar team took trips to local schools UC Berkeley and Stanford, and went across the country to check out Harvard, Princeton, and MIT. 

These campus visits helped the animators create a collegiate environment that while not based on any one school, had a mix of California and East Coast university traditions, Robert Kondo, Monster University's Art Director for Set Design & Shading, told us.

Kondo told Business Insider that because a lot of the animators went to art school, they traveled to these campuses to get an understanding of a more all around university experience. More than looking at specific buildings, though, Kondo said — as only an art school grad could — that the team went to "absorb the feeling" of their element.

The movie has sparked some online debate over the buildings at Monsters University, as various students across the country try and claim specific landmarks as their own. This fits in pretty nicely with Pixar's goal of creating a unique yet relatable campus laden with "ritual" and "tradition."

Based on this online discussion and the campuses Pixar chose, we went through and picked out some buildings that might have been inspiration points for the Monsters University creators. 

One of the most visible structures on any campus is the clock tower, such as this one found at Monsters University.

Although a different color, Berkeley's Sather Tower seems to be a close cousin.

The scenic campus of Monsters University also features the Troll Bridge, which is much more pleasant than its name would suggest.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

This Map Shows The Most Famous Booze From Every State


thrillist logo

Steve Lovelace, you have inspired us, sir. To drink! Last month, the Dallas-based writer, photographer, and artist put together the wildly buzzy Corporate States of America map, with the logo of each of state's most notable company shoehorned in between its boundaries.

We noticed that only two were alcohol outfits, which drove us to create another map plotting the biggest/most high-profile liquor or beer companies from each of the 50.

We know there are at least infinity amazing craft breweries in each of these states, but this map's about the big boys, at least when there are big boys to be noted.

Don't agree with any of the calls? Please, let us know. And yes, turns out it's pretty hard to visually represent Jägerbombs for New Jersey when confined by small, oddly shaped spaces.

This post originally appeared at Thrillist.

thrillist booze map

More from Thrillist:

SEE ALSO: This Map Shows The Most Famous Brand From Every State

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Welcome To Manhattan, Where A Big City Education Could Cost You $1 Million


private school choir

The New York Post published a heartbreaking story yesterday of a 5-year-old tyke pulled from his $39,000 a year pre-school because of a dispute over a fundraising auction. 

His family is suing the Cathedral School of St. John the Divine for rigging his mother’s alleged $50,000 bid on a painting done by tiny children.

This young heir will now be forced to attend a $20,000 a year school and who knows what that will mean for his future: Imperfect mastery of Latin? AP test failures? College at a state school?!

A few years back, I tallied how much an education could cost parents if they sent their children to the priciest private schools in Manhattan; less than three years later it is woefully out of date as the cost of education continues to soar. So let’s see what the new total is, shall we?


PRESCHOOL:This covers ages 2-4 (usually starting at two and a half as children need to be out of diapers when they start) but let’s say your child spends three years there. To send your children to the prestigious and much sought-after school at the 92nd Street Y, it will cost you $28,644 a year for a 9 am - 2 pm school day, Monday through Friday. That will run you just a few dollars shy of $86,000 total...for a five hour school day.

LOWER SCHOOL:Now that your child has mastered the art of finger painting and has stopped pulling that other kid’s hair, she’s ready for Kindergarten-5th known as “lower school” at the pricy Riverdale Country School. This will run you $40,750/year plus a $1,000 registration fee for new students which amounts to $245,000 total. If they don’t know more about computers than you by the time this ends, you’ve been ripped off.

UPPER SCHOOL/HIGH SCHOOL:If your children continue at Riverdale you are looking at a bump to $42,000/year--more than most colleges. For this 6th-12th grade education the bill will run you $294,000 total but at least they’ll know Latin.

COLLEGE:If your teen graduates high school and decides she wants to stay in the New York area, she can attend Sarah Lawrence--the most expensive college in the country. This will run you at least $61,000 a year(likely more depending on your meal plan). Assuming your son or daughter learned enough at Riverdale to graduate college in four years, this means a $244,000 price tag. This does include room and board, but doesn’t include books and other incidentals. A steal at half the price! 

LAW SCHOOL: To make up for the fact that you’ve invested hundreds of thousands in your child’s education, she darn well better choose a profession that will earn some of it back, so law school’s a good bet. Columbia University’s prestigious three-year program runs $82,795 a year which means you’ll drop $248,000 on (hopefully) your final tuition checks.

The grand total: $1,117,000

It’s possible that if you sent your kids to public school and invested that million dollars in a medium risk fund, they’d be set for life…unless they want to send their kids to New York City private schools.  But they probably wouldn’t know Latin.

More From The Fiscal Times:
8 Worst Fashion Mistakes To Make On An Interview
Can't Afford Retirement? Move To The Sticks
What Happens When Paychecks Go Plastic?

SEE ALSO: This Lottery Winner Is Becoming Our Favorite New Millionaire

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13 Gorgeous Mountain Retreats Around the World


Jade Mountain Resort in St. LuciaForget the beach—nature lovers know that the best way to experience the great outdoors in the summer is to spend some quality time in the mountains.

If your idea of summer bliss involves hiking, biking, and swimming, these gorgeous resorts should be just the ticket. And if exotic scenery is a must, you’ll be happy to know that great mountain escapes can be found in tropical locales, too.

The Ahwahnee - Yosemite National Park, California

Nestled deep amongst the pine trees, cliffs, and canyons of Yosemite is the 123-room Ahwahnee Hotel. The impressive stone and wood structure was built in 1927 and is now considered a National Historic Landmark. Rooms with views of the Half Dome and El Capitan mountain peaks are filled with gorgeous dark wood and rich tapestries of Native American design. Highlights here include the Great Lounge with its 24-foot-high ceilings and a large stone fireplace. The grand dining room, flooded with natural light, is a must-see. This hotel is on the expensive side, and parking is limited, but the prime location and views are well-worth the price tag. A cool tidbit for movie lovers: parts of the Ahwahnee's interior, particularly its vivid red-and-black-framed elevators, were used as inspiration for the fictitious Overlook Hotel in Stanley Kubrick's The Shining.

Mountain Lodge - Telluride, Colorado

Located in Mountain Village, Mountain Lodge at Telluride is a classic Colorado mountain getaway. This log-cabin style lodge offers spacious condo and cabin rentals for groups from two to 14 people. Most rooms have kitchens, gas fireplaces, and private balconies in addition to small touches like humidifiers to battle the dry Colorado air. One highlight of this hotel is the year-round outdoor pool and hot tub with sweeping mountain views. The hotel's cozy restaurant, aptly named "The View", has a huge fireplace and plenty of space to lounge and enjoy a local beer. Additional perks here include a small fitness center, steam rooms, and free Wi-Fi.

Hope Lake Lodge - Finger Lakes, New York

The 106-room Hope Lake Lodge is practically a town unto itself. Guests have free access to a pool and several whirlpools, and for a small extra fee they can splash at the attached water park. Outdoor activities in the area abound, as the property sits next to the highest point in the county — the ski resort — which is attached to a year-round adventure center for zip lining and snow tubing that makes it easy for kids to stay entertained. More adult activities include signature cocktails next to the lobby’s cozy fireplace and an array of spa treatments. The property has a Northwoods decor throughout, and many details were crafted by local artisans. The staff is made up of family members, students, and long-time locals, and the resort exudes a relaxed home-away-from-home vibe.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

Uber Is Offering A $3,000 Helicopter Ride To The Hamptons On July 4, And Actually It's A Great Deal


memorial day traffic helicopter

To help New Yorkers going to the Hamptons this 4th of July avoid hellish traffic, popular on-demand car service Uber is offering an unusual deal: For $3,000, you and four friends can fly out in a helicopter, complete with a driver to take you to and from each helipad.

It's a terrific deal.

There are cheaper ways to get out to the beach, of course. Taking the Jitney bus or the Long Island Rail Road to East Hampton costs just $27.

But if you want to cut a multi-hour trip down to about 40 minutes and take in some amazing sights along the way, above the traffic is the way to go. And it's hard to find a flight for less than $3,000.

New York Helicopter offers charters for six passengers to East Hampton for $3,350. The same trip with HeliNY, for five passengers, costs $3,680. You can take a round trip for just $4,115, but you'll pay $300 for every hour in between the two flights.

HeliFlite does not publish its rates, but CEO Kurt Carlson said a trip for five people from the city to East Hampton in one of the company's executive class whirlybirds would likely cost a "little bit more" than $3,000.

The closest we could find to a better deal than Uber's comes from Awesome Flight. The one-way ride costs just $1,597, but the chopper fits only three passengers. So your group of five would need two charters, bringing the price to $3,194.

The Only Alternative

There is one way to fly to the Hamptons for less than $3,000: Go by seaplane. We've already determined it's the best way to make the trip, and if you buy individual tickets with Sound Aircraft, instead of chartering an entire whole plane, your group of five can get to the beach in 45 minutes for just $525 each.

That's a total of $2,625, leaving you with more than enough money to hire a car to get to and from each marina in style. And unlike the Uber deal, which is valid July 3 only, you can hop aboard all summer.

SEE ALSO: There Is No Better Way To Get To The Hamptons Than In A Seaplane

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San Francisco Is America's Snobbiest City, According To The Rest Of The Country


San Francisco

San Francisco may have some great restaurants, galleries, and shops, but it's also the most pretentious city in the country — at least according to Travel + Leisure readers.

The city recently took the top spot on a list of America's Snobbiest Cities, which the magazine compiled by asking readers to rank 35 major cities across the U.S., voting on everything from how charming the local accent is to the quality of microbrews and the attractiveness of residents.

The survey determined the snobbiest cities by evaluating things like the quality of high-end shopping, how tech-savvy the city is, and how showy the residents are.

T + L readers deemed San Francisco as the snobbiest city in America—but, they said, at least it's gay-friendly. New York City took the No. 2 spot on the list for its fast pace and do-or-die attitude. Boston ranked No. 3. Other "winning" cities included Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minn., Austin, Texas, and Charleston, S.C.

Here's the list of the top 20 snobbiest cities:

  1. San Francisco
  2. New York City
  3. Boston
  4. Minneapolis/St. Paul
  5. Santa Fe (TIED)
  6. Seattle (TIED)
  7. Chicago
  8. Providence, RI
  9. Washington, D.C.
  10. Charleston, SC
  11. Portland, OR
  12. Savannah, GA
  13. Nashville
  14. Kansas City, MO (TIED)
  15. Philadelphia (TIED)
  16. Los Angeles
  17. Houston
  18. Portland, ME
  19. Austin, TX
  20. San Juan, PR

SEE ALSO: The 15 Healthiest Cities In America >

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Students Who Take Tougher Graduation Exams Are More Likely To Wind Up In Jail


Alcatraz Jail Prison

While you might think a more rigorous education would lead to students who are better prepared for college or employment, high-stakes graduation testing actually leads to a higher incarceration rate, a new study finds.

About 70% of high school students in the U.S. take standardized exit exams, which determine whether they can graduate. The most rigorous of these exams are "standards-based tests" that at least address English and math skills learned from 9th grade on, and in some states focus on specific courses offered at public school. 

If a student does not pass all portions of this test after multiple attempts, he or she will not receive a diploma.

Test advocates argue that these exams incentivize students by attaching concrete consequences to a standard of knowledge.

However, a new working paper from the National Bureau of Economic Research claims that rather than benefiting students who might otherwise graduate comparatively underprepared, these standards-based tests account for a 12.5% rise in incarceration rates.

The paper remains neutral on the effectiveness of the exams, but closes by stating "nothing in this paper suggests that exit exams have large positive effects on student learning and productivity growth while they do suggest an important adverse effect for one segment of the population."

As the average state's incarceration rate was 1.6% during the period analyzed, the authors call this potential .2% increase "substantial" and "disturbing."

While "minimum competency" exams that track skills taught before high school have a smaller effect on incarceration rates, they were large enough to also be noted in the report.

The report also found a decline in graduation rates for states that have introduced standards-based testing. According to the authors, the 1% decline is consistent throughout most studies of exit exams.

While the accepted theories of standards-based testing argue that any graduation decline will be fully offset by students getting GEDs, the authors of the study found that any increase in GEDs was too insignificant to make up for graduation decreases.

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Where The Hipsters Live In 14 Major Cities [MAPS]


It was only a matter of time before Yelp visualized its 39 million reviews into something awesome.

This week they launched the "Yelp Wordmap," a heatmap showing the density of various words used in Yelp reviews in 14 popular cities.

Now you can find out the best areas in your city for cocktails, PBR, a romantic night out, or bacon.

But the biggest gem in Yelp's data dump is its hipsterness heatmap.

From Austin to New York to DC to Paris, check out where irony germinates and where mustachioed musicians wander.


austin yelp hipster


Boston yelp hipster


chicago yelp hipster


london yelp hipster

Los Angeles

yelp LA hipster

New York

yelp new york hipster


paris yelp hipster


philadelphia yelp hipster


portland yelp hipster

San Diego

san diego hipster

San Francisco

san francisco hipster yelp


seattle yelp hipster


toronto yelp hipster

Washington, DC

washington dc yelp hipster

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Starbucks Is Trying To Get Customers To Hang Out At Night


starbucks evenings

Starbucks is trying to become a nighttime destination. 

The retailer has spent years developing Starbucks Evening, a test program where stores would offer beer, wine, and small appetizer plates, according to Nation's Restaurant News. 

Starbucks' evening program was inspired by European cafes, Clarice Turner, a vice president at the company, told NRN. 

"In Europe, a lot of those coffeehouses evolve as the day goes on," Turner said. "Maybe the music changes and small plates are served, and it becomes more of a gathering place, but people can still drink tea or hot chocolate."

The program is currently being tested in Seattle, Atlanta, Chicago, Los Angeles, Washington D.C., and Portland. It starts after 4 p.m.

You can see menus here

Starbucks isn't the only daytime destination trying to tap into the evening crowd. 

Chain restaurant Applebee's started a program where certain locations turn into nightclubs after 10 p.m. 

SEE ALSO: 24 People Who Determine What's Cool In America

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9 Great Hotels Where You Can Celebrate The 4th Of July


Rooftop Pool of South Beach HotelPlanning a patriotic getaway this 4th of July weekend?

These hotels are super convenient to the holiday action — whether you’re planning a trip to Lady Liberty or planning to catch one of the country’s many spectacular fireworks shows.

Ink 48, New York City

Ink 48 (named for its location on 48th Street in New York City) is close to the river and has a beautiful rooftop offering partial views of the 4th of July fireworks (shown from 24th to 40th streets).

Tickets to its private 4th of July reception are $200 plus fees, but that includes an open bar, hors d’oeuvres, and live DJ music. Its free wine receptions, swanky spa, and pet-friendly features make it a great place to stay as well.

The Hotel of South Beach, Miami

Centrally located in a historic Art Deco building, this is a darling little hotel by designer Todd Oldham and developer/hotelier Tony Goldman.

Staying here and planning on celebrating the 4th of July? Bring beach chairs and towels to the fun (and free) 4th of July event beginning at 7:00 pm on 8th Street and Ocean Drive (fireworks start at 9 p.m.).

Andaz Wall Street, New York City

Hoping to visit Lady Liberty on your Independence Day visit to NYC? The Statue of Liberty is reopening to the public on July 4th 0f 2013 after flooding from Hurricane Sandy.

Andaz Wall Street is located conveniently near Battery Park, where the ferries for the statue depart, and boasts striking design by The Rockwell Group and big, handsome rooms with stylish bathrooms.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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