Ivana Trump parlayed her marriage to Donald Trump into highly effective positions in his actual property empire — and their blockbuster divorce turned her into a star who suggested girls: “Don’t get mad — get everything!”
The former Olympic skier and mannequin from the former Czechoslovakia was described in a 1988 Vanity Fair profile titled “Power Blonde” as “every bit as driven and disciplined as her husband, though more privately so.”
But his notorious affair with Marla Maples catapulted Ivana to the entrance pages as she battled over phrases of their epic 1991 break up.
In the years after, Ivana authored thinly disguised novels, wrote recommendation columns and hawked jewellery, clothes and sweetness merchandise on cable TV purchasing networks.
Here are some tales of Ivana, who died Thursday at 73, from her decades in the spotlight:
How they met
Ivana and Donald met in 1976 at Maxwell’s Plum, an Upper East Side restaurant and singles bar owned by the late Warner LeRoy, son of famed film director Werner LeRoy.
“Ivana told me a story about how she couldn’t get a table and Donald, this handsome guy, walked up to her and got her a table,” her publicist, Todd Shapiro, mentioned Thursday.
“They were both young, she was a model at the time. So Ivana went back to her girlfriends and said, ‘I got good news and I got bad news. The good news, we got a table. The bad news is we gotta sit with this guy.’”
Shapiro added: “When she got out of Maxwell’s Plum, there was Donald Trump with a limousine, standing outside waiting for her.”
“The only problem was, according to Ivana, Donald’s limousine driver had off, so Donald had to drive the limo himself,” he mentioned.
“She wound up leaving her boyfriend.”
Fury on the slopes
Ivana and Maples, who later turned the second Mrs. Trump, had been launched Dec. 28, 1989, throughout a celebration in Aspen, Colo., the place Donald’s philandering was an open secret.
“I couldn’t believe it,” an attendee informed The Post a short while later.
“People were cringing, waiting for the sparks to fly.”
The girls parted with out incident however met once more two days later at a well-liked lunch spot on Ajax Mountain the place Maples confronted her lover’s spouse — in his presence, in line with a supply who heard about the incident.
“I love him and if you don’t, why don’t you let him go?” Maples demanded.
Ivana erupted, cursing at Maples and furiously mispronouncing her identify as “Moolah,” after which Donald informed her, “You’re over-reacting,” the supply mentioned.
On New Year’s Eve, Donald confirmed up at a celebration with Maples, after which Ivana phoned host David Koch and requested if her hubby was there with “his girlfriend.”
When the late vitality tycoon laughed nervously, Ivana “thought he was laughing at her,” a supply who was there mentioned.
“That was the straw that broke the camel’s back,” the supply added.
During a 1991 interview with Barbara Walters, Ivana gave a milder account of the incident with Maples, who she mentioned informed her, “I’m Marla and I love your husband. Do you?”
“I said, I really said, I said, ‘Get lost. I love my husband very much,’” she recalled.
“It was very unladylike, but it was as much as I really could, that was as much as I, as harsh as maybe I could be.”
‘The First Wives Club’
After divorcing Donald in December 1990, Ivana was amongst a number of bold-face names who made cameo appearances in the 1996 hit comedy “The First Wives Club.”
The film starred Bette Midler, Goldie Hawn and Diane Keaton as divorcees searching for revenge in opposition to their ex-husbands for leaving them to marry youthful girls.
In her memorable look, Ivana informed the trio, “Ladies, you have to be strong and independent.”
“And remember: Don’t get mad — get everything!”
Under phrases of a 1987 post-nuptial settlement, Ivana obtained a $10 million, lump-sum fee from Donald, who additionally agreed to pay her $350,000 a yr in upkeep.
It didn’t matter for those who had been a well known politician or a stranger, Ivana took the trip to cater to all types of visitors at the Plaza Hotel whereas she ran the famed institution, in line with Rudy Giuliani.
The former New York City mayor recalled a time he was eating at the lodge in the early Nineteen Nineties when Ivana gave two younger ladies sitting subsequent him an impromptu tour of the iconic constructing.
“There was a young girl at a table next to me with her parents and a friend,” Giuliani informed The Post. “She wanted to see the rooms at The Plaza.”
Giuliani mentioned the younger woman had learn the “Eloise” youngsters’s books — a sequence a few younger woman who lives on the high ground of the Plaza Hotel.
Ivana came visiting to say hey to Giuliani, he mentioned.
She then “said hello to the girl and gave her and a friend a tour of the Plaza,” the former mayor mentioned.
“Ivana was a very, very nice person. It was nice to see a celebrity who was down-to-earth.”
After years of flirting with a presidential run, Donald entered the 2016 race and made historical past along with his shock victory over Hillary Clinton.
But in an unique, pre-election interview with The Post, Ivana revealed that their acrimonious break up truly stored him from pulling the set off till then.
“Probably five years before our divorce, Reagan or somebody brought him a letter and said, ‘You should run for president,’” she mentioned at the time.
“But then…there was the divorce, there was the scandal, and American women loved me and hated him. So, there was no way that he would go into [politics] at that point.”
Ivana additionally mentioned she was serving as a sounding board for her ex, who she famously dubbed “The Donald” in a 1989 interview with Spy journal.
“We speak before and after the appearances and he asks me what I thought,” she mentioned.
Ivana mentioned her recommendation typically amounted to “be more calm.”
“But Donald cannot be calm,” she mentioned.
Following his election, Ivana additionally informed The Post, “I will suggest that I be ambassador for the Czech Republic.”
“[That] is where I’m from and my language and everybody knows me,” she mentioned.
Once a mannequin, all the time a mannequin
Fashion designer Dennis Basso, who was associates with Ivana for practically 40 years, mentioned they had been launched as a result of “I was a designer and she was interested in my collection.”
“I met her in September 1983. I had my first fashion show. She was front row, when Trump Tower was just opening,” he recalled.
“She arrived, she came with Donald Trump and she became an immediate client and we ended up with a 40-year love affair.”
Basso mentioned each he and Ivana typically spent Christmas in Aspen and that his husband, Michael Basso, would ski along with her, “the kids and other friends.”
“I was still basically buckling my boots,” he mentioned.
“She’d say, ‘You know what? Just forget it. Just tell people that the skiing was great today.’ And, ‘You know, you’re never going to make it down that mountain.’”
But Basso mentioned his favourite reminiscence of Ivana “was when she finaled my fashion show 25 years ago.”
“She came down the runway wrapped in golden sable,” he mentioned.
“It was an amazing look. She wore many, many designers. That’s what I always loved about her.”
In September 1991, Ivana and Donald had been noticed purchasing collectively, post-divorce, at a Kmart retailer in Pottstown, Penn.
“A lot of people were surprised when they walked in,” retailer supervisor Dave Eaton informed The Post at the time.
“They’re the biggest celebrities we’ve had here in a while.”
Son Donald Jr., who was with them, was attending a prep college close by and his dad and mom picked out sheets, bedspreads, toothpaste, shampoo and “all the usual things a student needs in the dormitory,” Eaton mentioned.
The whole price got here to greater than $200, which Donald tried to pay with an American Express card, which the retailer didn’t take — forcing him to fork over money.
Despite their bitter break up, Ivana and Donald smiled and chatted the entire time, and Donald posed for images and signed autographs, customers mentioned.
News of the purchasing journey got here simply days after Page Six revealed that Ivana had been seen shopping for knockoffs of Chanel and Hermes purses in San Remo, Italy.
The meal should go on
Former Vanity Fair columnist George Wayne mentioned his reminiscences of “my godmama Ivana” included an “unforgettable dinner party” she hosted in the kitchen of The Plaza Hotel, which she renovated after Donald purchased it in 1998.
The occasion for “a few guests” was scheduled for Jan. 17, 1991 — the similar night time the US launched “Operation Desert Storm” in opposition to Iraq for invading Kuwait — however Ivana “refused to cancel,” Wayne mentioned.
“She was introducing her new chef Kerry Simon — these were the days she was the queen of the Plaza Hotel,” he mentioned.
“I’ll always remember the most exquisite chef’s dinner in the kitchen and watching CNN as bombs dropped.”
Wayne added: “We sipped Veuve Cliquot, her favorite champagne, on that occasion and so many others.”
‘So classy, so elegant’
One of Ivana’s favourite eating places was Nello on the Upper East Side, the place she typically dined twice every week at a nook desk, common supervisor Atilla Cetin mentioned.
Her favourite dish there was osso buco, he mentioned.
“When she’d walk in the restaurant, she always said ‘Hi’ to everyone,” he mentioned.
“She never refused any conversation with anyone. She was so classy, so elegant – how she walked, how she sat, how she talked. It was like she was from a palace.”
After her final go to, about three weeks in the past, Cetin mentioned, “I walked her to her house.”
“Paparazzi took a picture of us and she texted me, ‘Look. you’re famous,’” he recalled.
“Yesterday, I almost stopped by her house to ask her how she was doing because I was worried. I said, ‘Maybe she’s not here or sleeping, don’t bother.’ I wish I did.”
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