When iconic toymaker FAO Schwarz announced the closing of its New York City store on Fifth Avenue in 2015, the news came as a shock to many. After all, it had been a retail institution for 145 years before high rental costs pushed the store to close its doors. Toys ‘R’ Us, which owned FAO Schwarz at the time, hoped to open a new location later in the year. Sadly, it was not meant to be.
However, in what some may call a holiday surprise, FAO Schwarz announced that it will open a new location in New York City in 2018!
Let the celebrating begin! In fact, we feel like doing a little dancing!
Who could forget that classic scene in the Tom Hanks’ movie “Big”? It was filmed in the original New York City FAO Schwarz store. What better location for a movie about toymakers?
The new FAO Schwarz location will return to Manhattan and in a prime location: Rockefeller Center! You know, the place with the glorious, ginormous Christmas tree.
The new toy store will take the place of the NBC Experience Store. The location sits between West 49th and West 50th streets and will reportedly occupy two floors.
FAO Schwarz’s new home will be a little smaller than its previous one, though. The original store spanned more than 61,000 square feet. However, this new retail location comes in around 19,000 square feet. So while they’re downsizing a bit, it still sounds like there will be plenty of room to roam and relive some wonderful childhood memories.
And for anyone worrying about how long this new location will stay open (because rent is still pretty steep in New York City, after all)—fear not: FAO Schwarz reportedly signed a long-term lease with Tishman Speyer, the company that owns the Art Deco property where the new store will be located. So, it looks like FAO Schwarz will once again be a must-see tourist destination for years to come.
No specific opening date has been announced. However, fall of 2018 is the current estimate (just in time for next year’s Christmas shopping!). And we’re sure toy lovers everywhere will be counting down the days until the new toy paradise opens in the heart of the Big Apple.