The Obama family is on the move to new and even more elegant temporary quarters.
After spending almost two weeks at the luxurious Hay Adams Hotel one block from the White House, President-elect Barack Obama, wife Michelle, and daughters Sasha and Malia, are moving into Blair House, the historic presidential guest residence on Thursday.
The world's most exclusive hotel
While not as well known as the White House, Blair House (www.blairhouse.org) is actually bigger than its neighbor just across Pennsylvania Avenue with 119 rooms covering 70,000 square feet. The White House has 65,000 square feet. Time Magazine has called it “the world’s most exclusive hotel.”
The suite the Obamas are expected to occupy has two bedrooms, 2 ½ baths, a library and a sitting room. According to press reports, the staff has set up a homework area for the Obama daughters. There is certainly enough space to do so -- the complex includes a total of 14 guest bedrooms, nine staff bedrooms, four dining rooms, 35 bathrooms, laundry facilities and a flower shop.
Sorry, we're booked
Since the Carter administration, every incoming president has stayed at Blair House prior to his inauguration. The Obamas asked to move in before their daughters started at Washington's Sidwell Friends School on January 5, but Blair House had already been promised to former Australian Prime Minister John Howard. This week, President Bush gave Howard and former British Prime Minister Tony Blair the Presidential Medal of Freedom.