Ivana Trump – Sailing, Swimming and Socialising in St. Tropez

Czech-born socialite, businesswoman, entrepreneur and former championship skier , Ivana Trump became, while married to Donald Trump, the Vice President of Interior Design for the Trump Organization, responsible for all of the interior design of Trump’s real estate. She went on to build her  own empire after the marriage ended in divorce in 1992 and by 1997 her clothes range was worth $50 million a year. Among her many illustrious projects, such as her hugely-successful perfume, accessories and cosmetics company Haute Couture, she’s also recently launched a wine collection. Ivana Trump talks to Angela Sara West about her home, lifestyle and famous friends in fashionable St. Tropez, the French Riviera hotspot which has attracted the A-list for decades. What attracted you to the Côte d’Azur? I’ve always loved the south of France ever since I first visited. I’ve been coming here for many years. Donald and I visited as newly-weds and over the years I grew to love it more and spent more and more time here every summer. It’s a magical place…I love the colours, warm weather and care-free freedom of it all. What gives St. Tropez that magical ingredient? The light, sounds, food, superb rosé wine, beaches, the people…just everything! The whole port area and market place, including the fish market, are a must to visit. The whole atmosphere is fun and relaxed, instilling the feeling of  ‘eat, drink and be merry’. There are many superb beaches. I’m a water baby…put me beside the water and I’m in and out. I love to sail, parasail, jet ski and swim all day. It’s paradise! ivana3 You own several residences around the world. How often do you visit your home in St. Tropez? I now spend around half the year here. Generally, it’s for long weekends fitted in between my busy work schedule. What type of property did you buy here? I bought a small, 100-year-old fisherman’s house right in the heart of the village in 2004. I’ve since added new ‘apartments’, so I’m converging and having so much fun! Did you face any difficulties buying a property here? No, buying was simple. Just get a great real estate lawyer who knows how to weave his way through the various laws and codes. As the ex-Vice President of Interior Design for the Trump Organization, how did you choose to decorate and furnish your French residence?  It’s terracotta-coloured with turquoise shutters. The lounge has wrought-iron lamps and furniture and a big open fireplace. I chose strong, Mediterranean colours for the ‘Moroccan Room’, all warmth and vibrancy. It’s casual but elegant, has the latest high-tech gadgets and a low-beamed seating area dressed with colourful cushions. I wanted it as somewhere to truly relax, spread out and enjoy being with friends…something informal and warm and it fits the bill. You have a very hands-on approach with all of your homes and development projects and your penchant  for antiques and Italian Murano glass is apparent throughout your resplendent homes… Yes, I enjoy browsing antique  shops and shows and choosing everything myself. Do you feel like you’re one of  the locals in St. Tropez now?  Yes, it’s great. I have the ‘special key’ that allows me to drive in spots forbidden to tourists. The ‘natives’ greet me as a friend. It’s a lovely  spot to feel at home. How’s your French? I speak six languages, some totally fluently, others well enough to understand and be understood. The more I’m in France, the better my French is. I’m not fluent, but I can manoeuvre through and get all I need. Any downsides to this fashionable hotspot? Only too much sunshine, too many parties, too much fabulous food and wine, too many good friends visiting from around the world…it’s wonderful…there are no downsides!  It’s my summer home-away-from-home. I’m in love and plan to be here for a long, long time. Which other big names do you socialise with in St. Tropez? Everyone – Elton John, Joan Collins, Mike Tyson, Diddy, Beyoncé… ivana1 You host a big party here every summer… Yes, usually I hold it in a big park and everyone comes and brings their friends. I’ve also held it at L’Escale in the port, which could only host 110 friends. I loved it! It meant that I personally knew everyone and could talk, dance, sing and enjoy myself with them. It was a fabulous party. I also love attending the Red Cross Ball in Monte Carlo. It’s full of tradition and ceremony. You were a championship skier in the Czech Republic. Do you ski in France? Of course! I love Chamonix, Crans-Montana…that whole area. I also love St. Moritz. Skiing is still my passion and my kids are good skiers, too. Finally, describe your perfect day in St.Tropez… I arise early, take a morning stroll, pick up fresh fruit, bread and milk and have a wonderful cappuccino or espresso. I head back to my house to check the overnight emails from my New York office, make a few ‘phone calls and catch up with my European friends. Then, it’s to the beach for lunch and a swim, followed by coffee with friends. I head home to change and around 9ish, it’s off to dinner or a party. Another wonderful day. Bon voyage à St. Tropez! See you there! Ivana’s website www.ivanatrump.com Ivana’s ‘Legends’ wines www.ivanawine.com

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