New York City is a shopper’s paradise. In amongst the fashion, jewellery and gift shops are some of the best toys stores in the world. As Christmas approaches, this is great news for families shopping in the city. What’s more, it is actually cheaper to shop for toys here in the United States than in the United Kingdom and other European destinations, so you should be able to get excellent value for your money.
While there are many toy stores to visit while on your visit to New York, here are three you wouldn’t want to miss out on – for a number of different reasons:
Toys”R”Us Times Square
Since its big opening 13 years ago, Toys”R”Us Times Square has established itself as one of the main attractions the Big Apple has to offer. Hundreds of thousands of kids come here each year to see what the company’s international flagship toy store has for them.
An impressive 110,000 square feet has been dedicated to displaying the latest toys and video games on the market, while there are other things to do and see here too. Check out The Center of the Toy Universe to gaze upon the 20-foot animatronic T-Rex dinosaur, ride the 60-foot Ferris wheel or get involved with the many interactive play items located throughout the store.
At Christmastime, there are always plenty of special events and guest appearances put on to entertain the crowds of toy shoppers searching for gifts to place under the tree.
FAO Schwarz 5th Avenue
As the oldest toy store in the United States, FAO Schwarz has evolved from simply a long-running toy store into the must-see tourist destination it is today. The flagship store on 5th Avenue is somewhere that continues to introduce new and exciting toy lines to delight kids of all ages.
In 2009, the business was acquired by Toys”R”Us, but the store still retains its charm and character. Toy Soldiers greet customers to the world-famous store and visitors can even book onto a guided tour to enjoy the magical toy emporium to the maximum.
FAO Schwarz couldn’t be mentioned without a reference to the BIG Piano. For those who have seen the Tom Hanks body-swap movie ‘Big’ from 1988, the scene in this toy store is certainly its most unforgettable moment. The giant piano perfectly captured the spirit of what the movie was all about and many visitors to this store are here simply for the chance to try it out for themselves.
Midtown Comics Times Square
Finally, something a bit different. For older kids and adults into their comic books, graphic novels, Manga and action figures, Midtown Comics has three New York locations: Downtown, Grand Central and Times Square (as well as a mini-boutique at FAO Schwarz).
At the Times Square store, fans of classic superheroes and epic franchises like Star Wars and Transformers will find all manner of collectibles to play with and exclusive toys just waiting to take pride of place in their home collections.