Vice President Joe Biden just returned Sunday from a three-nation trip that concluded with a 48 hour visit to Turkey. The vice president, his wife, and his entourage arrived in Turkey via Ukraine Friday evening around 7:30 local time for meetings with President Erdogan and other government officials. Biden departed for Washington, D.C. Sunday after meeting with Patriarch Bartholomew of the Eastern Orthodox Church. The stay in Turkey alone racked up a hotel bill of approximately $624,734.
The notice of the hotel contract was posted online uncharacteristically quickly, appearing on the very day of Biden's departure from Turkey. The documents called for 200 rooms and one large conference room at the Hilton Harbiye in Istanbul:
Numerous other hotels were considered but not deemed suitable due to various reasons including lack of sufficient rooms, distance from planned events, and even ongoing renovations at one facility.
Documents related to lodging for the the Moroccan and Ukrainian legs of Biden's trip have not yet been posted.