Trump’s glitterball of rococo kitsch

President-elect Donald Trump's sheer lack of taste is his best security measure.


Trump at home: what heaven would like if Liberace had been a decorator
(Image credit: Copyright (c) 2003 Rex Features. No use without permission.)

It will be a while before we know whether Donald Trump's policies will spark an economic boom, or lead America into a new depression, but some people are already feeling the pinch. Take John Di Domenico, a Las Vegas-based Donald Trump impersonator, who made hay during the election campaign charging up to $10,000 per appearance. "It was just insane this last few months," he tells the New York Post. "One week I was in five cities. I would literally not sleep. I would finish a job, go back to my room, get out of makeup and by the time I cleaned my wig, it was time to get to the next city."

However, once Trump won, "the laughter went silent". In a case of life imitating art, Di Domenico has "hired two bodyguards dressed as Secret Service because of the anger that Trump's election has stirred in some quarters".

Things aren't all bad though: he's got bookings for "a wedding anniversaryin London, a party at the home of a rich Upper East Side couple and a Trump inauguration celebration". And with Trump set to be a fixture on the political scene for the foreseeable, Di Domenico hopes to keep capitalising on it. "I'm building a White House press room in my house," he says. "I can get right in front of the podium, hit the record button and for the next four years can just bang this stuff out."

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Ironically, the real Donald Trump has been strangely reluctant to move into America's most exclusive residence, to the point where it looks like he may attempt "a commuter relationship with the Oval Office", says The New York Times. At the very least, his wife Melania will initially be moving "back and forth" between Washington DC and the Trump Tower, at least until son Barron finishes his school year in several months' time, says the Daily Mail.

Such living arrangements could end up costing American taxpayers a lot of money. "A million dollars a day is currently being spent on protecting Donald Trump and his family," reports Harriet Alexander in The Daily Telegraph. Security concerns mean that "metal railings and concrete bollards now stand outside the tower" while "large numbers of heavily armed police patrol the streets, and some of the pavements are closed for security reasons".

This is having a disastrous affect on nearby shops, with one jeweller taking as little as $65 in an entire day. Potential buyers of apartments in the Trump Tower are also apparently being put off although the enterprising seller of one unit in the Trump Tower is trying to make the best of the situation, reports Reuters. "The best value in the most secure building in Manhattan," read their ad, going on to describe the presence of the Secret Service as a "new amenity".

Still, reading Stephen Bayley's description of Trump's sense of "style" in The Spectator, I think most security measures are unnecessary. Surely, even the most determined terrorist or kidnapper would be put off by the sheer tackiness of the "golden throne in the style of Louise Quinze" or the "pink marble lobby", to say nothing of the "14-set onyx dining table". Overall, Trump apartment is a "glitterball of rococo kitsch" that is "what heaven would look like if Liberace has been a decorator".

Tabloid money Adele's "bloody good brain" makes her a real star

It's usually about now that the "poor public", including 11,000 former BHS employees, are treated to "unedifying snaps" of Philip Green "surrounded by champagne-guzzling acolytes as he and his wife Tina parade along the beach at the opulent Sandy Lane hotel" in Barbados for their Christmas bash, says Adam Helliker in the Sunday Express. Not this year. The "portly plutocrat" has cancelled his usual eight rooms, which cost $2,000 a night each.

That's too bad for his celebrity guests: the singer Sinitta says the party "starts elegantly enough, but by the end of the night we end up in the pool with our diamonds and champagne glasses and not much else". Instead, "Sir Shifty" is "likely to confine himself to his £100m superyacht Lionheart, keeping his perspiring head down and away from any predatory photographers, knowing that he is this year's pantomime baddie".

Krishnan Guru-Murthy received £26,000 in overseas aid money to moderate a two-day aid conference in Mexico. The Channel 4 newsreader said he didn't know where the money had come from and will donate it to charity. "That's very big of him," says The Sun's Kelvin MacKenzie. "Who did he think had paid him such a vast amount for so little work?" It could only have come from a charity or a government. "The faster Mrs May flogs Channel 4 the better, with the money going to the Third World. That would please Guru-Murthy."

Adele on the other hand is "not only a talent, she has a bloody good brain on her", says MacKenzie. After tickets to her shows at Wembley next summer sold out in 11 minutes only to reappear online priced at £6,599 for seats that cost between £45 and £95, the singer suggested buyers bring ID to ensure their names match those on the tickets. The only way to change the name is to use website Twickets, which sells the tickets on at face value. "Adele, you are a star," says MacKenzie. "Currently a lone star, so I'd be grateful if others in the show-biz firmament followed suit."