Forget old-style "going shopping": some retail spaces are more like entertainment venues, with games, crafts, live theater, restaurants, ferris wheels.... Below are six New York toy stores that go all out to provide fun on the spot.
New York Toy Stores that are Fun to Visit: (alphabetical)
The makers of the popular American Girl have a prime location at Fifth Avenue and 49th Street, and a "much more than just a store" philosophy. Inside, you'll find "boutiques" for different types of American Girl dolls, and also the American Girl Cafe, overlooking Fifth Avenue, open for brunch, lunch, afternoon tea, and dinner. Guests can make reservations months in advance. Meals include a Treat Seat at the table for guest dolls, and a surprise keepsake.* A private dining room is available for parties, too.
Other experiences at American Girl Place include the Doll Hair Salon: choose a new hairdo for your doll, and maybe a facial scrub or an ear piercing. The store also has a photo studio.
Check the website for special events such as Date With Dad, Bitty Bear's Birthday Celebration, or Memories With Mom, and for hotels that offer special packages for American Girl Place visitors.
--check prices for New York City hotels, at About.com's affiliate, Kayak.com
- continue to Build-A-Bear Workshop
*Always check web sites for updates!