Obama reveals private living areas of White House

This image provided by Architectural Digest shows The Treaty Room in the White House in Washington in August 2016. The Treaty Room is filled with memorabilia including one of President Barack Obama's two Grammy Awards, family photos, and a personalized football. It’s also where Obama often retreats late at night. He uses the room’s namesake table, which has been in the White House since 1869, as a desk. Obama likes to say the White House is the “people’s house.” The Architectural Digest photos are giving the public its first glimpse of private areas on the second floor of the White House that Obama, his wife, Michelle, daughters Malia and Sasha and family dogs Bo and Sunny have called home for nearly eight years.(Michael Mundy/Architectural Digest via AP)
This image provided by Architectural Digest shows The Treaty Room in the White House in Washington in August 2016. The Treaty Room is filled with memorabilia including one of President Barack Obama's two Grammy Awards, family photos, and a personalized football. It’s also where Obama often retreats late at night. He uses the room’s namesake table, which has been in the White House since 1869, as a desk. Obama likes to say the White House is the “people’s house.” The Architectural Digest photos are giving the public its first glimpse of private areas on the second floor of the White House that Obama, his wife, Michelle, daughters Malia and Sasha and family dogs Bo and Sunny have called home for nearly eight years.(Michael Mundy/Architectural Digest via AP)

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama likes to say the White House is the “people’s house.” Now, the people are getting a look at the rooms where he lives.

Exclusive photos published Tuesday by Architectural Digest are giving the public its first glimpse of private areas on the second floor of the White House that Obama, his wife, Michelle, daughters Malia and Sasha and family dogs Bo and Sunny have called home for nearly eight years.

Los Angeles-based interior designer Michael Smith decorated the rooms, as well as the Oval Office. A mutual friend in Chicago introduced him to the Obamas after the 2008 election.

This photo provided by Architectural Digest show the Old Family Dining room in the White House in Washington. Works by Robert Rauschenberg, right, and Alma Thomas, the first African American artist woman represented in the White House, left, make a modern splash. (Michael Mundy/Architectural Digest via AP)

This photo provided by Architectural Digest show the Old Family Dining room in the White House in Washington. Works by Robert Rauschenberg, right, and Alma Thomas, the first African American artist woman represented in the White House, left, make a modern splash. (Michael Mundy/Architectural Digest via AP)

The first lady said Smith managed to reflect her family’s tastes while respecting the history of the White House.

“Above all, it has truly felt like a home for our family,” she told the magazine.

Photos show the Yellow Oval Room; the Treaty Room, where Obama retreats late at night to read briefing material for the next day; a sitting room; a dining room; and the master bedroom. The rooms are adorned with a variety of modern and contemporary art borrowed from major art institutions, such as the National Gallery of Art and Smithsonian museums.

Architectural Digest has also published photos of the private living quarters of Presidents John F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush.

Amy Astley, the editor in chief, said the Obamas’ personal style, and the history and diversity of the nation, are reflected in their art and decor choices. The Architectural Digest issue with photos of the Obama living quarters is scheduled to appear on newsstands on Nov. 8, Election Day.

The image provided by Architectural Digest shows the Yellow Oval Room in the White House in Washington in a cover story about . Designer Michael S. Smith specified a Donald Kaufman paint for the Yellow Oval Room. (Michael Mundy/Architectural Digest via AP)

The image provided by Architectural Digest shows the Yellow Oval Room in the White House in Washington in a cover story about . Designer Michael S. Smith specified a Donald Kaufman paint for the Yellow Oval Room. (Michael Mundy/Architectural Digest via AP)

Decorated in beige hues, the master bedroom has an antique canopy bed decked out with fine Italian linen. Identical, footed tables at either side of the bed, one bearing family photos and one stacked with books. Matching, upholstered chairs and a sofa form a sitting area.

Smith called the bedroom the Obamas’ “sanctuary.”

“You really want to make sure that the president of the United States gets a good night’s sleep,” he told the magazine.

That’s something Obama apparently gets. “I have a phone right by my bedside and every morning somebody calls and says, ‘Mr. President, it’s your 7 a.m. wake-up call,’” Obama said last week during an appearance on ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live!”

 

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