Vice President Kamala Harris and her husband Doug Emhoff moved in to their official residence on Tuesday night, just days after it emerged she was unhappy about living out of suitcases while it was being renovated.
The Naval Observatory – the VP’s official residence – has been out of action for more than two months while it undergoes much-needed updates.
The pair had been living at Blair House, across the road from the White House, since January – an arrangement that was reportedly beginning to wear on Harris.
‘She is getting frustrated,’ an administration official told CNN, noting that every day her desire to move into her designated house grows more intense.
But it seems that she has now had the green light to move into the official property.
‘Tonight when she returns, she will take Marine Two to the vice president’s residence,’ an official confirmed to The New York Times.
Kamala Harris and Doug Emhoff moved in to the official vice presidential residence on Tuesday
The pair, seen together March 16, have been living at Blair House near the White House
Moving trucks were seen outside Blair House earlier this week as the couple readied to leave
Moving trucks have been seen outside Blair House this week, giving rise to speculation that the official residence was almost complete.
The Victorian home, which features a large veranda, a pool and a sunroom, sits on the grounds of the Naval Observatory in Northwest Washington.
When Mike Pence and his wife Karen moved out in January, the opportunity was seized for necessary upgrades, such as a new heating and air system, refurbished wooden floors and updated chimney liners.
According to two administration staff with knowledge of the ongoing updates to the residence, Harris, who likes to cook, requested work be done to the kitchen.
While Blair House is comfortable and luxurious, Harris has a tendency to prefer more informal, modern and sleek accommodations.
In January, Harris moved out of her minimalist condo in D.C. to Blair House.
Blair House has been called ‘the world’s most exclusive hotel’ as it primarily is used as a guest house for visiting foreign leaders, dignitaries and other guests of the president.
But its formal role meant Harris could not put her own mark on the property.
The couple will be able to decorate the VP’s official residence to their tastes.
Blair House is known for its luxury and museum-quality pieces of American history
There are more than 100 rooms, which are used to house official guests of the president, like visiting foreign dignitaries
Harris has a more informal style than that of Blair House. The guest room pictured is known as Mrs. Truman’s Bedroom
Harris’ condo in Washington was light and airy and modern, cohesive with her more informal style – unlike the formal and antique nature of Blair House
When Joe and Jill Biden lived there, they painted the walls the same blue as their Delaware home.
Harris and Emhoff are yet to designate an interior designer, with whom they will work, but Harris is said to be keen to reflect both her previous role as senator for California, and her status as the first person of South Asian and Caribbean descent to live there.
Structural repairs are paid for by the Navy.
Cosmetic upgrades are funded by the Vice President’s Residence Foundation, which was started in 1991 after Vice President Dan Quayle began soliciting donations for various home improvements, including a $130,000 pool, a gym and a putting green.
In 2010, Biden joked: ‘He’s my favorite vice president,’ adding that he was a big fan of the swimming pool.
‘And my granddaughters love it.’
The Pence family are seen on the steps of the house in January 2017 before the inaugural balls
Joe and Jill Biden’s favorite room in the Vice President’s residence was the solarium (pictured)
A military harpist plays music during a Thanksgiving dinner hosted by the Bidens in 2010
George H.W. Bush is seen in the Vice President’s residence in around 1983
The foundation also pays to hang artwork and install new drapes, and handles some larger projects.
It ‘partnered with the Navy’ for a major renovation during the Gore era that included the installation of a kitchenette on the second floor, so that the family would not have to travel to the service kitchen in the basement.
The foundation is run by volunteers appointed by the vice president who often help solicit private donations, and Harris has been working to select a five-person panel to serve on the foundation, her office said.
In 2018, it reported about $250,000 in contributions from donors, according to public filings.