" says Donald Trump, having just stepped aboard his throne room of a plane and stopping by my seat to extend his hand. "I bought this from Paul Allen and gutted it top to bottom.
" calls Trump over his shoulder, leading me down the corridor to the cockpit.
Polished and restrained where their father is flamboyant, they've nonetheless paid him the highest praise by enlisting in the family trade.
No less telling, none of them are train wrecks like so many children of billionaires.
"I had a lot of one-on-ones" with the 14-year-old Trump, adds Dobias, some of which got physical, both men say.
Whatever it took to seize the eighth-grader's attention, Dobias seemed to turn him around.
C'mon, I'll show you myself." I follow him into the stateroom of the 757, past three rows of sleeper seats wrapped in eggshell calfskin, with seat-belt buckles of plated gold and the family crest stitched in every headrest; past the conference center, with its mahogany table and a dozen executive high-backs snugged around it; past the in-plane theater, with its oyster-shape couches and the 57-inch flatscreen tuned to Fox; past the bumped-out bulkhead and the first of two bedrooms, this one fitted with mohair couches that convert to a full-size bed; and then the master bedroom, with its silk-spun walls and bathroom fixtures finished in rosy gold."Not bad, you agree?
It's bigger than Air Force One, which is a step down from this in every way. Didja know it was featured on the Discovery Channel as the world's most luxurious jetliner?
"But I guess we were pushed and motivated differently." It's worth noting that Trump was nearly a train wreck himself as the son of wealth in Jamaica Estates, Queens.Fred's Though Fred lived and died a very rich man, he made his kids work like peasants.The three boys spent summers pulling weeds and pouring cement, learning the building trade from the subfloor up, while the two girls toiled in his real estate office in the bowels of Coney Island.Trump tells the story of being dragged by the nose to join Fred on his rounds collecting rents."We'd go on jobs where you needed tough guys to knock on doors," he says.Fred Trump, the second in a line of self-made magnates (his father, Friedrich, had earned his fortune in the Klondike gold rush, selling lodging, food, booze and possibly women to hordes of miners), was possessed of the singular family gift: He could see the future and beat everyone else to it."When the car was just coming out, houses had no garages," says Trump."Dad went all over Queens, building garages in the Thirties, and he could throw 'em up like nothing.There's a Starbucks somewhere up in the sky-high atrium, not far from the 60-foot waterfall.You fight the urge to dunk your head in the pool where it collects, and try, instead, to regain your wits on the whooshing ride up to the 26th floor."My brother and I are probably the only sons of billionaires who can operate a D-10 Caterpillar." "I did less-than-glamorous internships in sweltering New York — the South of France wasn't an option," says Ivanka in her immaculate office next door to Don Jr.Together with Eric, the third of Trump's kids by his first wife, Ivana Trump (he has two younger children by subsequent wives), his three grown offspring handle his vast portfolio of luxury hotels and resorts.