RANCHO MIRAGE, CALIFORNIA, JANUARY 29, 2014 — The White House announced today that President Obama will meet with His Majesty King Abdullah II, King of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, on February 14, 2014 at The Annenberg Retreat at Sunnylands in Rancho Mirage, California.
“The United States and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan are close friends and historic partners that have worked together to promote peace, prosperity, and reform,” the White House Press Secretary said in a statement. “The President looks forward to discussing with King Abdullah opportunities to strengthen the U.S.-Jordan strategic partnership and how to advance our political, economic, and security cooperation. The two leaders will also continue consultations on regional developments, including Middle East peace and Syria.”
“We are profoundly honored that President Obama has chosen Sunnylands as the venue for this important meeting,” said Geoffrey Cowan, president of The Annenberg Foundation Trust at Sunnylands (2010-2016). “Walter and Leonore Annenberg were outstanding philanthropists and diplomats who hoped that their estate would become the ‘Camp David of the West’ where the President could meet with world leaders to promote global peace and facilitate international agreements. The upcoming meeting between President Obama and His Majesty King Abdullah II of Jordan, which follows the June 2013 meeting between President Obama and President Xi of China, continues to fulfill that vision, which is carried on by their children and grandchildren who serve as our trustees.”
Constructed in the mid-1960s as the winter home of Walter and Leonore Annenberg, Sunnylands has hosted eight U.S. presidents, British royalty and other world leaders throughout its storied history. Notably, President & Mrs. Ronald Reagan celebrated the New Year’s holiday during every year of his presidency as overnight guests at Sunnylands, where he also conducted high level meetings with Secretary of State George Shultz and signed a major trade agreement with Canada. President & Mrs. George H.W. Bush were also frequent guests. In 1990, President and Mrs. Bush hosted a State Dinner at Sunnylands in honor of Japanese Prime Minister Toshiki Kaifu, one of the few occasions in history where a State Dinner was held outside the White House. In June 2013, President Obama hosted President Xi at Sunnylands for a two-day “shirtsleeves summit” that was hailed as the most important meeting between leaders from U.S. and China in decades and resulted in a major agreement to cut the use of hydrofluorocarbons, or HFCs, which are greenhouse gases that are contributing to climate change.