Another classic New York City joint is closing its doors—the Campbell Apartment, located inside of Grand Central Terminal, will be over as we know it come last call on Thursday night. While the space is historic, the bar itself has only been around since 1999—at that time, it was dusted off and opened by current owner Mark Grossich, who put $2.5 million into renovating it.

Prior to that it was a jail, a storage room, and most famously an office and parlor belonging to John W. Campbell, who used it for both work and play. You can learn more about its history here. The space is landmarked, so the walls, ceiling, and that gorgeous window over the bar are protected... but ownership will change hands.

In a move that's generated some controversy, the bar will no longer be under the lock and key of Grossich, as the MTA has awarded the lease to Scott Gerber.

Campbell's office, 1923. (Wurts Bros. Courtesy of the Museum of the City of New York, X2010.7.2.24894)

Gerber, under the Gerber Group, runs places like Mr. Purple and Irvington, located in a W hotel. We reached out to ask what changes he had in store for the space, but his publicist told us, "Unfortunately we're unable to comment at this time." (We were asked, however, to not refer to the Gerber Group as being "nightclub" oriented.)

Declining to comment could be due to some legal loose ends—Grossich "has decided to appeal his eviction and hopes to reopen the bar if he ultimately wins his legal battle against the MTA," according to the NY Post. The MTA opened up bidding on the lease last year (Grossich says the bidding process was unfair) and reportedly had advisors come in to talk Gerber in to taking over the space.

"I said, ‘I’m really not interested,'" he told the Post, "and they said, ‘Look, we think you’d be great, you’re the kind of person we want.’ And I said, OK."

Inside the Campbell Apartment one afternoon last year. (Photo by Lee Towndrow/Gothamist)

If his appeal fails, Grossich will be ousted for good and Gerber will begin renovations, which will include a new stone bar surface, replacing the classic wood one. And a petition probably isn't going to stop that.

Honestly, the Campbell Apartment has been a great place to drop by for an early evening after a train ride, when it was nearly empty. However, those there were mostly tourists with a bunch of bags splayed out everywhere, and since dress code was never enforced it sort of took away from the ambiance such a space could emanate. The food was also mediocre, though their classic (and expensive) cocktails really hit the spot.

If Gerber doesn't douche the place up or make it too slick, maybe this could be a good thing?