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“Slightly Disappointed.”
Review of Campbell Apartment

Campbell Apartment
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Grand Central: The Open Sesame Bagel Tour
Ranked #31 of 862 Nightlife in New York City
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
cincinnati, ohio
Level Contributor
15 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
“Slightly Disappointed.”
Reviewed 30 July 2014

I had really high hopes for the Campbell Apartment after reading some of the reviews here. When we arrived at the entrance the hostess wouldn't seat us as one of the members of our party was wearing a "t-shirt". It was a little frustrating because I would have argued that it wasn't a t-shirt at all. It was a fitted shirt and brand new without any logo or writing on the front. The hostess was very kind though, and none of us felt like putting up a fuss. I did get to catch a glimpse of the inside and while it was a very cool style I didn't feel like the ambiance was anything incredible. The dress code did allow us to sit at the outside bar and we enjoyed some cocktails there. They were out of ingredients for several of the cocktails but I settled on the blood orange. It was good, but again, we visited several other bars in NYC where I felt the ambiance and drinks were much better. We learned our lesson though, and made sure the gentleman in our group wore button down shirts for the rest of the trip.

Visited July 2014
1 Thank bschmitt8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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249 reviews from our community

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Oxford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
20 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“Excellent atmosphere and drinks, amazing location”
Reviewed 24 July 2014

I was visiting New York for a short trip and only had one night to meet up with a diverse group of friends. This bar totally fit the bill- it's right in Grand Central so convenient for everyone coming from all around the city/environs by subway or train. I loved taking the service elevator up (half way up the ramp from outside the oyster bar)- added to the Prohibition vibe. This place is great just for the atmosphere- art deco/flapper outfits etc.- but the drinks were all tasty too and there was a selection so multiple things for every taste. If I'm buying cocktails in NYC they better taste this good! We called earlier in the day to reserve a table- a wise call as we had a great little area of couches/armchairs and tables to chill out in. It's a classy place but not stuffily so- but be warned, they're strict about the dress code so be sure to check before you go (no sandals/exercise shoes for men). I'll definitely be back- this is my new gathering spot when I have to get everyone in one great place for a night!

Visited July 2014
1 Thank Ashley M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
56 reviews
15 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“What a cool vibe!”
Reviewed 23 July 2014

Straight out of mad men! Loved this large dark open bar! Felt like movie stars. Class hostesses and cocktail servers with prompt service.

Visited July 2014
Thank Jen R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Broadstairs, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
348 reviews
39 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 143 helpful votes
“Upmarket cocktails”
Reviewed 16 July 2014

Lovely room close to Grand Central Station. Cocktails are not cheap but the hostess was welcoming and the drinks were very good. A good experience.

Visited July 2014
Thank Col07
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
13 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“A portal to A Lost World”
Reviewed 12 June 2014

Having lived in New York for a couple of years I felt like a battle hardened know all, seen it done it got the T shirt etc. But a recent visit reminded me why its so great. Firstly, its the sort of place that constantly re-invents itself, so just when you think you know it you realise you dont. You go to Crate and Barrel and its an old friend and you go to the Frick and have the comfort of re-affirmation that yes you were right, it really is on of the worlds greatest museums. Then you stroll across town and you find something new like the Highline park. Is it the worlds greatest park, no, is it the worlds best views, no, but wow does it hit you, an opportunity from nothing to improve the hood and add to the already rich tapestry of NY. You are used to the views down the avenues, but suddenly you get those views from on high, of the cross towns, an intelectually liberating moment, like the day after finishing your exams, or the first time you go diving and sea a new world.
The Campbell apartment is not that experience for me. I lived nearby for 2 years and didn't know it was there. Thats how cool it is. Neither did my NY friends, and thats how cool they were not. You cant find the entrance, I defy you, go and search. I thought a portal was a mythical entrance, destined to drop you out onto the New Jersey turnpike, finding yourself in a heap next to John Malkovic. But this portal is better. Eventually after much searching I found an art deco lift, unpreposesing and discreet, in a grey granite wall. I got in and pushed a button, might have been to floor 3, it was a surreal out of body experience and the details escape me. I alighted, and drifted in an ephemeral manner through a lobby and into a large scottish baronial hall, with a 20's vibe, neat cocktail waitresses nicely presented, girls in flapper dresses I swear, and a barman serving cocktails to die for. When we left the art deco pre war ambience, it was only with the intrusion of Mr Sinatra, and the insult of modernity was no more than the mild chastisement of of an innocent 1950's world, gently caressing your conciousness. I stood by Mr Campbell's safe at the fireplace and beheld the lost world around me, oh to have lived in the pre war era. I left, reluctantly and after several cocktails, vowing to return again soon, as I re-entered Grand Central via the lift/portal and my spirits collapsed on re-entry to the modern world. I tried to return the next day, but there was no lift, it had gone, the magical portal had closed. Devastating.
Apparently Mr Campbell used the apartment for entertaining his guests from out of town, and from now on so shall I, if I ever find it again.
The Campbell apartment, its the Ritz bar in London, Harry's in Venice, the Rainbow rooms, its special, if the gods ever guide you to the portal you are trully blessed.

Visited March 2014
1 Thank PaulWhitlockLondon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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