Whether it’s “the Summer White House,” “the Winter White House,” a beach house or a fishing camp, presidents need to get away, too.
If a current or former president stays at a friend’s estate even for only one night, the visit bestows bragging rights to the place, and plaques can be ordered stating a president slept here.
Some houses have more than one well-traveled president’s name in their pedigree. A few of the following homes also have hosted other dignitaries, movie stars, and at least one of the mansions has appeared in several movies. Apparently, the presidential association is good for real estate prices, too. The prices of the following homes (with most images provided by Realtor.com) range from $1.675 million to $95 million.
By Colleen Kane
Posted 21 June 2012
Location: Kailua Bay, Oahu, Hawaii
Price: $9.8 million
Square Footage: 5,145
This Hawaiian retreat was the “winter White House” most recently in December 2011. (From 2008 until 2010, the Obamas rented a nearby home each December. ) The house, which is currently on the market for nearly $10 million, is Asian-inspired with bamboo ceilings. In front there’s a lagoon-like pool and Jacuzzi, and out back is the ocean.
In summers, Blue Heron Farm on Martha’s Vineyard has served as the Obama “Summer White House.”
Location: La Jolla, Calif.
Price: $12 million
Square Footage: 3,009
A reporter recently asked Ann Romney if she and her husband would vacation abroad as much as 'the Obamas' if Mitt is elected president. “I doubt that,” she replied, “Our vacations and our happiness come from being with our children and grandchildren.” It was an odd question on the reporter’s part considering that while Michelle Obama and the girls took a controversial trip to Spain, President Obama has not vacationed abroad since taking office.
Ann Romney added that as for vacation spots, her family has its “own places for that.” Indeed: Here is just one, a Spanish-style beachfront home in La Jolla. But the house will not remain this way for long, according to renovation plans reported earlier this year that would drastically increase the size of the house. Those plans call for a four-car garage with car elevator, a water feature and outdoor shower, and a new 3,600 square-foot basement. If the plans are carried out, the house will more than triple into a mansion size of about 11,000 square feet.
Location: Muzquiz, Coahuila, Mexico
Price: $6 million
Square Footage: 6,500
In more than a century since it was built in 1900, San Geronimo has hosted Dwight Eisenhower as well as Mexican presidents and Charles Lindbergh. The 50,000-acre cattle ranch, which is between two mountain ranges, is on the market but listed as “sale pending.” It comes with an air strip and hangar. Cattle and horses are sold separately.
Location: Hillsborough, Calif.
Price: $29 million
Square Footage: 35,000
The enormous Tudor mansion built for bank heiress Cilia Tobin Clark has hosted presidents Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, Gerald Ford and George H.W. Bush, as well as prominent figures such as the late King Hussein of Jordan and former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.
The 6-acre Tobin Clark Estate overlooking San Francisco’s Lower Bay was built in 1931 and has been fully restored and updated to the tune of more than $19 million. The house, which is for sale and was once known as House-on-Hill, has a grand ballroom, a music room, banquet facility, wine vault storing more than 1,700 bottles, media room and gym.
Location: San Clemente, Calif.
Price: $1.925 million
Square Footage: 2,500
Built in 1926, this house by the beach has hosted President Richard Nixon, as well as another president (of the NRA) Charlton Heston. Gloria Swanson, Joseph Kennedy, Clark Gable, Marilyn Monroe and Doris Day have also spent time in this home. Notable features at Nixon’s “Western White House”, which is for sale, include cathedral exposed beam ceilings, Dutch doors, an outdoor shower, two fireplaces, two balconies and French doors that open out to a side patio.
Location: Thurmont, Md.
Price: $8.95 million
Square Footage: N/A
The history-soaked fishing lodge in the Catocin Mountains is known as Trout Run, and true to its name, it features a 2-mile trout stream. The compound -- near another famous presidential retreat, Camp David – occupies more than 450 acres. It has hosted presidents Herbert Hoover, Franklin D. Roosevelt and Dwight D. Eisenhower, who stayed in any of five freestanding stone guest quarters on the property. When not angling for trout, the commanders-in-chief could aim their guns at the property’s abundant wild turkey, deer, and grouse. The lodge was up for auction in 2003 and up for sale last year, but it is now off the market.
Location: Rancho Mirage, Calif.
Price: $1.675 million
Square Footage: 6,316
The mid-mod compound built as the retirement home for former President Gerald Ford recently sold following a slight reduction from its $1.699 million asking price. The home is on the 13th hole of the Thunderbird Country Club. It was designed by architect Welton Becket, whose work is well recognized in the form of L.A.’s Capitol Records Building as well as Disney Resort. It features Gerald-and-Betty offices, a pool that was used daily by Gerald Ford, and numerous skylights and light-wells. No word on whether the buyer opted to also buy the vintage furnishings, including the lime green living room set.
Location: Beverly Hills, Calif.
Price: $95 million
Square Footage: N/A
The terra cotta and stucco BeverlyHillsHouse hosted John and Jacqueline Kennedy on their honeymoon, andwas used for location shots seenin “The Godfather” and “The Bodyguard.” Just three blocks from Sunset Boulevard, the estate, which is for sale, features 50-foot ceilings in the entry hall, an Art Deco nightclub, an outdoor terrace that can accommodate 400 for sit-down dining, and two projection rooms. Also on the 3.7 acre property are a tennis court with an indoor bar, an eight-car garage with a guest house above, staff housing and security cottage.