Classy train station bar The Campbell Apartment will soon be closing its doors after a long, dramatic fight to stay alive. As part of its plan to revamp Grand Central Terminal, the MTA has decided to bring in hip and high-end businesses like the Apple Store and swanky restaurants while giving long-standing tenants the boot.
Last December, the bar’s owner, Mark Grossich, learned that The Campbell Apartment wouldn’t be sticking around. In order to save his spot of seventeen years, Grossich offered to pay a higher rent to the MTA, an increase from $350,000 to $800,000 a year. At the same time, nightlife entrepreneur Scott Gerber bid $1.1 million, which the MTA accepted, plus 2.5 percent. After the bidding battle, Grossich sued the MTA for running an unfair bidding process. After a months-long battle in the Manhattan Supreme Court, Grossich lost and was not granted a stay of eviction. Grossich now has until the end of the month to pack up his business.
New tenant Gerber, who currently runs pricey upscale hotel bars like Mr. Purple and the Irvington, has big plans for his new space. New decor, a stone-top bar, and a total style turnaround are in the works. Gerber also claims his business will be a little more casual, welcoming jeans and sneakers where The Campbell Apartment had a strict business dress code.