Friday, March 4, 2016


I don't know how many times I've rushed through Grand Central Station pushed along by the crowds with the fear of being trampled an ever present prod in the back of my brain. You really have to pull yourself to the outskirts of the main traffic patterns away from the bulldozer of humanity plowing through the corridors of the station to give yourself room to see what is right out there in the open. If you do pull yourself away from the flow and can look to the west there's a grand staircase leading up to the exit.
Above the archway and in fairly large letters are the words, "TO VANDERBILT AVENUE, THE CAMPBELL APARTMENT". I've probably seen this a thousand times and never questioned what the Campbell Apartment was or even recognized that it had any significance to my appreciation of design.
That's part of what I like so much about New York City, there are so many things in plain sight that are cloaked in invisibility capes needing a bit of magic to be seen.
This all started back in the 1920's when entrepreneur and financier, John Campbell, added his office and personal salon to a space in Grand Central Terminal accessed from an entrance off of Vanderbilt Avenue. Campbell brought in the architect, Augustus Allen,
to transform the room into a Florentine Palace with a massive faux fireplace
beautifully paneled walls
and a hand-painted Plaster-of-Paris ceiling. Campbell conducted his business here during the day and at night he transformed it into a club for his cronies where he brought in popular jazz and Broadway musicians and entertainers for their personal enjoyment.
After his death in the 1950's the apartment fell back into the hands of Grand Central and transitioned into a signalman's office and a storage area for mops, brooms and the terminals arsenal of guns.
In 1999 Grand Central was granted the money to renovate the salon into one of New York's best kept secret bars. So I'm raising the curtain, at least to anyone following our blog, and letting you know about this special little gem. It can be our little secret.
So stop by in the middle of the afternoon when the bartender has time to share your story
or go as the work day is dying down and order a cocktail while you mingle with the crowd of New Yorkers in the know.

It's been a great week for PR. We've been featured in the local LGBTQ magazine, Our Lives. For the full article you can go to:
Adding to the great week we've also been given the accolade of featured designer for the month of March by the New York Design Center. You can follow this by going to:
New York City Speakeasy During Prohibition, 1933
Margaret Bourke-White
Represented by the Monroe Gallery, Santa Fe, NM

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