Published in Yahoo on June 19th, 2019, By James McClain
In a somewhat surprising move, President Donald Trump has sold his longtime Beverly Hills estate, reportedly his last remaining West Coast residential outpost, for $13.5 million in a hush-hush deal that closed off-market. That transaction price is nearly double the $7 million Trump originally paid for the property, which was rarely used in the twelve years following his February 2007 purchase. (For the record, the house was technically owned by an offshoot of the Trump Org, the investment conglomerate controlled by Don Jr. & Eric Trump ever since their father’s election to political office.)
The buyer, who acquired the property via “Hillcrest Asia Limited,” an offshore entity headquartered in the British Virgin Islands, is billionaire Indonesian businessman Bambang Hary Tanoesoedibjo. Also known as Hary Tanoe, the colorful 53-year-old owns the MNC Group, a multinational conglomerate with interests in media, finance, and real estate.
Like Trump, Tanoe is a high-profile, attention-grabbing (he boasts nearly one million followers on Instagram) investor who also harbors political aspirations. In 2015, he founded the Indonesian Unity Party following public disagreements with his native country’s two primary political parties. He is also a noted Trump fan and associate, having attended the president’s 2017 inauguration with his wife Liliana Tanaja and having developed a Trump-branded resort in Bali. Tanoe reportedly keeps a signed “Make America Great Again” cap in his office.
As for the Trump-cum-Tanoe Beverly Hills property, interior photographs are scant. But public records show that the vaguely Tudor-style house was built in 1927 and sports 5,395 sq. feet of living space within its pale yellow walls. There are sprawling lawns, a detached garage with upstairs caretaker’s quarters, and a detached pool house on the .67-acre lot, which sits in the prime Beverly Hills Flats neighborhood at the junction of several of Beverly Hills’ busiest streets and directly across the road from the iconic Beverly Hills Hotel.
The new Tanoe compound is also (in)famously surrounded by a walls and a towering hedge — one that apparently violated local laws on landscaping height. The Trump Org ultimately paid at least $1,100 in fines to Beverly Hills city in 2017 alone for failing to prune their privets.
Astute real estate watchers may recall that Trump also briefly owned the property immediately next door to this $13.5 million house. Back in 2008, he picked up that center hall Colonial for $10.35 million, only to sell it one year later — as the real estate market bottomed out — at a $850,000 loss. In an odd coincidence — or maybe it’s not — the buyer of that other house was another Indonesia billionaire: heiress Margaretha Widjaja, a granddaughter of the late Eka Tjipta Widjaja, the legendary tycoon who was at one time Indonesia’s richest man. (Widjaja continues to own the property.)
And in addition to his new $13.5 million mansion, Tanoe also maintains a lavish flat at the highly exclusive Montage Residences Beverly Hills, arguably the swankiest condo complex in all of Los Angeles. Records reveal he used another offshore entity (“Merit Success Asia Limited”) to pay $10.25 million back in 2010 for his 4,680 sq. ft. pied-à-terre. Some of his Montage neighbors include oil heiress Ariadne Getty, LA Fitness CEO Louis Welch, LA Rams owner Stan Kroenke and his Walmart heiress wife Ann Walton Kroenke, and Judge Judy herself.