Donald Trump may arguably be an outsider in the world of NYC real estate, but that doesn’t mean he is without any admirers. With a career that stretches back to the 1970s, he’s crossed paths with nearly every big real estate player in the city today. His small circle of friends includes billionaire titans like Richard LeFrak, who has known him for close to 50 years, and Douglas Elliman Chairman Howard Lorber, who appeared on “The Apprentice” as a judge. And of course, there’s the famed doyenne of new development marketing Louise Sunshine, who claims she spotted the Donald’s potential early on. She wound up working for him for nearly 20 years as one of his first deputies at the Trump Organization.
While Trump’s candidacy has inspired plenty of vitriol from the general public, many in the industry have over the years volunteered favorable — and even touching — assessments and anecdotes about the businessman and friend. “I don’t see Donald that often, but when I do he is most gracious and attentive towards me as a person. That’s a nice trait to have,” said Edward Minskoff, who has played golf with Trump on multiple occasions. When asked whether he would vote for the divisive Republican candidate, Minskoff politely declined to say. But even if top NYC real estate players are not coming out in droves to back his bid for the White House, nearly everyone has a Trump story to tell. Here’s a look at some of the impressions he’s made.