For attendees at the National Portrait Gallery’s biannual gala, it was hard to miss Jeff Bezos last night, one of several award recipients whose portrait was being inducted into the Gallery—sharing the stage with Lin-Manuel Miranda, Gayle King, Anna Wintour, Michelle Obama, and members of the Earth Wind & Fire. (Okay, maybe it was a little hard for Bezos to stand out.) Bezos received the award onstage from his son, Preston.
At least some have wondered whether the Portrait Gallery was the only DC building that Bezos christened this weekend. For nearly three years, the Amazon CEO has overseen the city’s largest residential renovation, where he is fusing two museum buildings in Kalorama into a single property. City documents recently showed the project past its due date, but closing in on completion.
But in the hours after the Portrait Gallery had concluded the event, neighborhood residents noticed that some lights had been turned on from inside the windows of the left-facing Pope House—the residential wing of the Bezos mansion. No trucks or similar construction-related activity were visible on the street or driveways, prompting at least neighbor to wonder if they had just witnessed Bezos’ first “pied” in the 27,000-square-foot pied-a-terre.
During past events in Washington, Bezos has tended to stay in downtown hotels like the Jefferson.