He is a self-proclaimed Churchill obsessive who has dared to scoff because he claims to base his presidential style on the legendary war leader in Britain.
Now Donald Trump has gone a step further by forging an extraordinary – and until now secret – friendship with the head of the Churchill clan, the 12th Duke of Marlborough, whom he affectionately & # 39; The Dook & # 39; calls.
So close are the two men, in fact, that The Mail understands on Sunday that their families will soon spend a four-day private vacation during the next month at half the time.
The duke, his wife and two children fly to the Trump estate Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Florida, the Winter White House, where they will join the president, his wife Melania and their son, the 12-year-old Barron.
Donald Trump has an extraordinary – and until now secret – friendship with the head of the Churchill clan, the 12th Duke of Marlborough, whom he affectionately & # 39; The Dook & # 39; calls (right)
The dining room at Blenheim Palace, on the edge of Woodstock, Oxfordshire, reveals a dining table suitable for a king and a large walkway
Trump bought the beautiful house of Mar-a-Lago in 1985 when it fell into disrepair and spent an estimated £ 40 million to transform it
A portrait of the 1st Duke of Marlborough (left) can be found in Blenheim Palace while a portrait of Trump (right) can be found in his estate Mar-a-Lago
And we can further reveal that the president is planning a trip to Britain later this year, where he will stay in Blenheim, the birthplace of his idol Churchill.
"This friendship is the real deal," said a Washington resident. They have linked their similar views, both politically and otherwise, and have become fast friends.
& # 39; They have a lot more in common than you might think. They talk regularly on the phone and their conversations often extend far into the night. & # 39;
Now at their late middle age, both men are former playboys from hugely privileged backgrounds.
Their budding friendship will undoubtedly lead to comparisons between the sumptuous lifestyles they enjoy, their displays of wealth, a mutual love of gold leaf – and, of course, two of the most famous ostentatious mansions in the world.
In the case of Trump, the & # 39; jewel & # 39; in his £ 2.5 billion ownership of Mar-a-Lago, a vast 62,500 sq.m. Moorish-like resort, surrounded by swaying palm trees and pristine sandy beaches, which was built in 1924 for heirs of grain products. Marjorie Merriweather Post.
Blenheim Palace is an English baroque masterpiece on the outskirts of Woodstock, Oxfordshire. It was built for military commander John Churchill, the 1st Duke of Marlborough and the direct ancestor of Winston Churchill
The property marine of £ 2.5 billion is located in Mar-a-Lago, a vast 62,500 m² Moorish-style resort, surrounded by swaying palm trees and pristine sandy beaches in Florida.
Mar-a-Lago, by some even & # 39; a temple of bling & # 39; called, has an extensive large living room with gold leaf. The property also features 50 Austrian chandeliers
Blenheim Palace (paintings within the depicted dwelling) is considered one of the most beautiful mansions in Great Britain. It is so architecturally important that it is designated as World Heritage of Unesco
The Duke of Marlborough can now boast about Blenheim Palace, the English baroque masterpiece on the outskirts of Woodstock, Oxfordshire.
Built for military commander John Churchill, the 1st Duke of Marlborough and the direct forerunner of Winston Churchill, it is considered one of Britain's finest mansions.
Indeed, it is so architecturally important, it is designated as a Unesco world heritage.
Both palaces are remarkable as statements about wealth and power. And if Mar-a-Lago only has 126 rooms compared to Blenheims 187, the sumptuous luminaires are just as overwhelming.
Blenheim Palace (the featured Sunderland bedroom), home of The Duke of Marlborough, was built on the former royal hunting grounds by the first Duke of Marlborough to celebrate his victory in 1704 at the Battle of Blenheim
Meanwhile, Mar-a-Lago, which was built in 1924 for the graffiti star Marjorie Merriweather Post, was bought in 1985 when it fell into disrepair.
Blenheim Palace (pictured above) was built as a monument to the "glory of Great Britain & # 39 ;. It was made between 1705 and 1722 at a price equivalent to £ 180 million today
Meanwhile, Trump has spent an estimated £ 40 million to transform Mar-a-Lago (one of the sumptuous bathrooms pictured above) into what some might call a bling & # 39; have mentioned. He has also added £ 100,000 gold plating to his 33 bathrooms and installed 50 chandeliers of Austrian crystals
Trump bought the expansive property in 1985 when it fell into disrepair and has spent an estimated £ 40 million to turn it into what some people call a temple of bling & # 39; to mention.
For example, he added £ 100,000 to goldplating to the 33 bathrooms, and installed 50 chandeliers of Austrian crystals.
The pièce de résistance is, of course, a life-size portrait of a much younger Trump dressed in flattering tennis white, hanging on the wooden paneling of the library. Below is a gold plate with the text: & # 39; The Visionary & # 39 ;.
While Mar-a-Lago is one of Trump's private residences – indeed First Lady Melania spends this weekend there – a part of it is also a resort and a club for private members. It costs £ 155,000 to participate, and members also have to pay an annual fee of around £ 11,000.
Blenheim may have fewer bathrooms – just ten – but its 2,100-acre dwarf Mar-a-Lago's 17-acre estate.
The palace – built on the former royal hunting ground by the first Duke of Marlborough to celebrate his 1704 victory at the Battle of Blenheim – was built as a monument to Britain's "glory."
A grateful Queen Anne – played by Olivia Colman in the current Oscar-photographed film The Favorite – contributed to the cost of public funds.
Created between 1705 and 1722 at a price equivalent to £ 180 million today, it was designed by architects Sir John Vanbrugh and Nicholas Hawksmoor, who were planning to portray the first Duke of Marlborough as an almost divine figure (an ambition of which some believe that Trump might harbor).
The gardens are designed by Lancelot & Capability & # 39; Brown and a 180-foot library, by Sir Christopher Wren, houses 10,000 books and the largest private organ in Europe.
Anyone can visit the main building for an entrance fee of £ 27 – although the duke's private quarters are strictly forbidden.
Trump met the duke, James Spencer-Churchill (known as Jamie for his friends), this summer for the first time when Theresa May organized an exuberant dinner with black ties with British business leaders in Blenheim.
It is clear that the president had asked for the palace to be included in his first working visit to Britain last summer because he wanted to see, not only the birthplace of Winston Churchill, but the bed in which he was born in 1874.
According to legend, Churchill was born in a toilet when his mother, Lady Randolph Churchill, started early labor during a ball in Blenheim. In fact, she gave birth in a bedroom next to the main state spaces.
After dinner, the 72-year-old president and The Dook, 63, started when the Duke took Trump to Blenheim, culminating in a visit to the relatively modest bedroom itself, complete with pink rose wallpaper.
"It takes a lot to impress Trump, but he was blown away by the grandeur and history of Blenheim", said a source from Washington.
"Trump and the Duke spent much more time together than was intended because the president was so fascinated by the history of the house and the bond with Winston Churchill. It is difficult for everyone to "out-bling" the Donald, but the Duke did.
He has old masters hanging on the wall who have been in his family for longer than America has been a republic. & # 39;
It must have certainly amused Trump that, just like his fortune saved Mar-a-Lago, Blenheim rescued in 1895 & # 39; was by the 9th Duke of Marlborough's marriage with American railman Consuelo Vanderbilt, whose £ 2 million dowry (the equivalent of £ 60 million today) ensured that Blenheim not only survived but also thrived.
Although the marriage was unfortunate (Consuelo would have a large silver object on the dining table to keep her husband out of sight while they ate), she paid her money for essential repairs in Blenheim.
And the admiration of Trump for the prime minister of the war in Britain is well described.
His favorite film is Darkest Hour, which described the extraordinary power of Churchill during the Second World War and Gary Oldman won the best actor Oscar last year.
Indeed, Trump's first act as president was to replace a bust of civil rights leader Martin Luther King – installed in the Oval Office by his predecessor Barack Obama – with a bust from Churchill.
When he visited the prime minister's house, Dammen, last year, Trump proudly posed in Churchill's favorite leather armchair.
"Trump has openly talked about modeling his leadership at Churchills," said the source. & # 39; He admires his no-nonsense style and loud talking. Trump does not read many books, but he has every book about Churchill.
& # 39; From the moment he and the Duke met, they hit it immediately. & # 39;
A few years ago their friendship seemed even less likely.
The duke, also known as Jamie Blandford (his previous title was the Marquis of Blandford), was once a notorious party-goer who became embroiled in a world of drugs.
In 1995 he spent a month in prison for falsifying prescriptions and was sentenced to six months in prison in 2007 on two points of dangerous driving behavior after a road rage incident.
His father, the 11th Duke, described him as & # 39; the black sheep & # 39; of the family and even went to court to ensure that his son would never have full control over Blenheim.
Nowadays the board is led by a supervisory board that has the right of veto over a decision.
By comparison, Trump is a lifelong teetotaler who boasts that he has never smoked a cigarette or tried drugs.
However, both men share an eloquent love for women and struggle to hold big egos.
An unremarkable student at Harrow School, the Duke who once sniffed a master: "You can not tell me what to do. I'm going to be the Duke of Marlborough. & # 39;
He has had a series of glamorous friends, including the actress Catherine Oxenberg and Lulu Blacker, who was the bridesmaid of Sarah Ferguson when she married Prince Andrew.
Trump has now conceived five children with three women. Since his presidency, he has been involved in scandals with a seemingly endless parade of Playboy models, strippers and porn stars that have accused him of deceiving his various wives, including Melania.
The duke has a son and heir, George, the result of his first marriage with Becky Few Brown, kindergarten teacher. That marriage ended in 1998 after eight years in a divorce.
He has two children, Lady Araminta, 11, and the ten-year-old Lord Casper of second wife Edla Griffiths, a ceramist from Wales, whom he married in 2002. In all respects she has been a stabilizing force that has helped her husband to remain free of drugs and focus on his duties.
Mar-a-Lago has a lot to offer the duke's family with entertainment, including a spa and two Olympic-size swimming pools.
The charms of Blenheim, on the other hand, are more formal and include a private lake, a croquet field and a chapel built in 1730 with a safe in which the remains of successive dukes and duchesses are housed.
It also has & # 39; the world's second largest maze, consisting of 3000 yew hedges, but no swimming pool.
Blenheim also surpassed Mar-a-Lago when it comes to first impressions. Known as & # 39; the most beautiful view in England & # 39 ;, the dramatic design of the house and estate features a main frontage of 150 meters wide, flanked by two enormous wings, kitchens and stables connected to the main house by colonnades.
The central entrance is a massive portico. On each corner of the main building stands a tower with decorative sculptures carved by the Dutch-English master woodcarver Grinling Gibbons.
They are repeated by similar towers on the sides of the kitchen and stable blocks. The extensive roofline is embellished with gilded and painted statues of people and animals.
The main entrance of Mar-a-Lago is a modest 60ft-high pink painted arch decorated with Moroccan tiles from the 15th century.
With regard to artwork, Blenheim is once again joining forces.
The red salon shows a portrait of the 4th duke and duchess painted by Sir Joshua Reynolds in 1777. Opposite is a painting by John Singer Sargent by Charles Spencer-Churchill, the 9th duke, and his family.
The beautiful ceiling of the room is from Hawskmoor, with gilt family arms in the corners. The furniture is invaluable Chippendale from the 18th century.
The living room of Trump is equally ostentatious, if not historically relevant. On 1800 square meters with 21ft high ceilings, the room has a copy of the Thousand Wings Ceiling & # 39 ;, based on the Accademia Gallery in Venice, with winged gold leaf wings and a golden sunburst. It is said to cost £ 250,000.
Trump's old butler Anthony Senecal said: "It's just the most fantastic room in Mar-a-Lago. Mr. Trump will tell you that the ceiling is gold, but it is gold leaf. & # 39;
Both men also know how to dine in style. Blenheim's dining room – with murals painted by Louis Laguerre from the 17th century, marble fireplaces and marble doors with carved shells – was used during last week's visit to President Trump's dinner.
The formal dining room of Trump can meanwhile only 200 places, but has gilded chairs and a gilded gold roof of 9 carat gold.
& # 39; You can be sure that the food is better in Mar-a-Lago, & # 39; said a source. & # 39; In Blenheim, the kitchens are miles away from the formal reception rooms. Mar-a-Lago is great but it is basically a family home.
The president insists that everything is perfect, from the plates with the golden edge to the temperature of the steaks. & # 39;
Senecal told The Mail on Sunday that Mar-a-Lago & # 39; everything & # 39; represents for the president. There he married Melania.
& # 39; The main staircase is a work of art. I remember Melania coming down the stairs in her wedding dress. She looked beautiful, "he said.
While the furniture from Blenheim the & # 39; real deal & # 39; his well-known Senecal that his boss has sold a lot of Mar-a-Lago's original Louis XIV furniture and replaced it with cheaper reproductions.
"He has raised about £ 1 million with the furniture he has auctioned," he added. "In 1992 or 1993, Mr. Trump lost many of the antiques that he thought would not pay for heavy use by guests in the public part of the building.
& # 39; He changed the library into a bar. It was full of first editions and signed copies. I asked him what he expected from me with the books and he said, "Just take them away." I took a bunch home with me. & # 39;
Trump looks forward to dropping his home at the duke. Blenheim is a stately home, but Mar-a-Lago is a family home, & # 39; said a source.
"Mr. Trump has put a lot of time and effort into his house and it is his pride and joy.
& # 39; It is very comfortable. The private bathrooms have underfloor heating. I bet Blenheim does not have that. & # 39;