Inside The Strange Way Donald And Melania Trump Eat At Mar-A-Lago

It's been nearly six months since former President Donald Trump and wife Melania departed the White House for his Florida golf resort, Mar-a-Lago, which Trump frequently referred to as the "Winter White House" during his time serving as the 45th president (via The New York Times). Although there is some question as to how much time Melania spends there with her husband, when they do appear together, the couple take their meals in the most unusual way.

In his upcoming book, "Landslide: The Final Days of the Trump Presidency," author Michael Wolff describes the former first couple taking their meals with all the pomp and circumstance of someone who might still be a head of state. Both seem to love being the center of attention and dine in the center of the Mar-a-Lago patio restaurant in a roped-off section for everyone in attendance to fawn at, according to Insider.

Wolff describes them as being looked at "somewhat like zoo animals" and then adds: "No, no, that's not right. They are like a newly married couple: every night is a wedding at which they spend their dinner greeting friends and wellwishers."

Donald Trump and Melania seek applause before sitting down for meals

Although Donald Trump spent most of his life as a New York resident and was born and raised in the New York City borough of Queens, he made Florida his permanent residency in 2019, according to The New York Times. When he took off on Air Force One on January 20, 2021, he landed in Florida and Mar-a-Lago where there was some dispute over whether he could legally live at the resort on an ongoing basis. In May of 2021, the town of Palm Beach determined he could stay (via Forbes).

As the former president continues life at his own golf resort, he and Melania enter the patio restaurant after it's been nearly filled and are then greeted by a standing ovation and applause. However, CNN reported in April of 2021 that there's some question as to how much time the former first lady lives where her husband lives.

"She's not a presence at Mar-a-Lago at all. She's not mingling with people and rarely interacts with her husband's staff," a source told CNN.

However, when she is seen, she takes in the adulation just like her husband when sitting down for a meal, smiling as guests stand and applaud. 

Melania Trump leads her own life of luxury at Mar-a-Lago

When Melania Trump does finally sit down to eat, she is often with her parents, who have their own personal Mar-a-Lago suite. Melania then dines on the Dover Sole, and always has a Diet Coke with no ice, according to CNN. Her husband also has a penchant for Diet Coke and famously had what was known as a "Diet Coke Button" on his Oval Office Desk. All Trump had to do was press it and a butler would bring him his favorite beverage (via Time).

CNN also reports that the former first lady spends a good portion of her day receiving spa treatments and also spends time in her suite of rooms with the Trumps' teenage son, Barron. She still maintains her own office and staff, although she does not retain any official duties as so many former first ladies have. As of April, she didn't even have a deal to write her own memoir.

Donald Trump's life at Mar-a-Lago has perks and quirks

Since the Trumps first stepped off the plane into the Florida sun in January, Donald Trump has been living the life of many retirees, which includes taking in a few rounds of golf in the morning, something he frequently did on weekends as president at his own various golf resorts on the East Coast, according to CNN. 

However, he still tries to be the center of attention. While he was once the United States president who could create multiple news cycles each day with his tweets, as well as a former reality TV star who also spent decades getting the attention of the New York press, he now finds himself banned from social media. Instead, he sends out press releases via email that eventually become tweets from reporters. He also still spends several hours a day watching the news and isn't happy when he's not in the main story.

People reports that besides sitting roped off during dinner waiting for applause, Trump finds attention in other ways, including popping in on weddings and other special events held at his resort, surprising guests while posing for photos.

According to Michael Wolff's new book, the former president has also spent time asking guests if they know any good lawyers, considering the legal war he has ahead of him now that his company, The Trump Organization, has been indicted by Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance (via Insider and NBC News).