First Lady Melania Trump officially reopened the White House Rose Garden on Saturday, Aug. 22. The unveiling came less than a month after President Donald Trump’s wife announced her plan to renew and restore the iconic space. Perry Guillot, Inc and Oehme, van Sweden & Associates/OvS—two landscape architecture firms—collaborated on the Rose Garden’s restoration, which returned the garden to its original 1962 blueprint that was designed by Bunny Mellon during the Kennedy Administration.
In her remarks at the official reopening, the Be Best founder called gardens “symbols of growth and hope” and thanked those who made the renewal possible. “I deeply appreciate your support for America’s garden, my family, and the White House. The Rose Garden layout we have all come to know and treasure was designed during the Kennedy Administration by Bunny Mellon. For 60 years, this space has served as the backdrop for many important events. The garden has also served as a peaceful outdoor escape for many administrations and their guests,” she said.
Melania, who is honorary chairwoman of the Committee for the Preservation of the White House Gardens, noted that the changes to the garden are “the result of a thoughtful and collaborative process carefully crafted with the help of scholars and experts in architecture, horticulture, design, and historic preservation.”
The garden’s renewal included improvements to the infrastructure and utilities. Melania explained that the enhancements will allow the garden to readily meet the needs of the White House. “These improvements also make the garden fully accessible to all Americans, including those with disabilities,” she added. “Gardens are symbols of growth and hope. We celebrate this garden in the hope that future generations will not only enjoy – but also draw inspiration and strength – from this space where so much of our history has been shared.Thank you all for your dedication and contributions to this incredible project.”
Last month, Melania shared her plans to restore the Rose Garden. “Even in the most difficult times, the @WhiteHouse Rose Garden has stood as a symbol of strength & continuity,” she wrote on social media. “Today, it is my pleasure to announce our plans to renew & restore this iconic space so that we preserve its history & beauty for generations to come.” At the time, the White House said the restoration project was supported by the National Park Service and was being funded with private donations.
The completion of the project came ahead of Melania’s appearance at the 2020 Republican National Convention. The first lady’s spokeswoman confirmed to HOLA! USA that Melania will be delivering her RNC speech from the newly restored garden.