If you were waiting to score memorabilia from the Pump Room, time’s up.
The public liquidation sale of mementos from the Ambassador East Hotel and its famous restaurant in the Gold Coast is sold out and officially closed on Tuesday, according to a spokesperson.
“They were swamped over the weekend,” said Samantha Bryant of Grace Public Relations. “There was a two-hour line of people waiting to get in.”
The first-come, first-served sale began Friday, February 18 at the Pump Room site and was scheduled to continue for 12 days or until sold out. Tens of thousands of items were available — some as cheap as $1 -- including furnishings, bar stools, lamps, dishes and artwork.
Private homeowners purchased Frank Sinatra’s private booth and the Pump Room bar, according to Bryant, while The Second City scored the updated version of Booth One in a sealed-bid auction. The original Booth One was donated to the Chicago History Museum in 1980.
Second City Chief Executive Andrew Alexander said the comedy club got Booth One for about $4,500 and plan to incorporate it into the retro décor at their new venue, the former site of “Tony ‘n Tina’s Wedding” in Piper’s Alley. Alexander also said that Second City matriarch Joyce Sloane, who died on Feb. 3, used to take other alumni to the Pump Room, such as protégées John Belushi and Gilda Radner.
“That room had just great nostalgia,” Alexander said. “Even when Rich Melman took it over (in 1976), I used to spend a lot of time there.”
The Ambassador East Hotel opened in 1926 and the Pump Room in 1938. The restaurant was the glittering stomping ground for many Hollywood celebrities, including Frank Sinatra, Bette Davis, Humphrey Bogart, Judy Garland and Marilyn Monroe.
The Pump Room closed in January as part of the full renovation of the Ambassador East Hotel, scheduled to last until fall 2011, according to the hotel’s website. A spokeswoman said it has not yet been determined if the Pump Room will reopen as a restaurant.