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SeattleStoreExterior

Exterior of American Girl Seattle.

American Girl Place (also called American Girl Stores) is a physical retail location where American Girl products can be purchased in person.

Specifically, American Girl Place is the name for the three largest American Girl stores in Chicago, New York and Los Angeles (which are also called the Flagship stores). The other stores are referred to as American Girl Boutique and Bistro[1], international outlets are referred to as American Girl Specialty Boutique, and pop-up stores are referred to as American Girl Temporary Boutique.

Each store has well decorated displays of dolls, outfits, accessories and items and purchases can be made directly. Patronage is marketed by the company as an "experience" rather than as a regular retail store visit.

Available Activities

Along with on-site shopping, other activities are available.

Cafe: Stores with bistros available serve brunch, lunch, tea, and dinner[2]. The menus are preset; Seattle was the exception with an a-la-carte menu. A person who brings a doll is offered a Treat Seat to prop their doll up at the table with them; if a doll has not been brought, there are loaner dolls that can be used.

AG Denver and Kansas City were not built with cafes. In February 2018, AG Seattle and Scottsdale closed the bistros to regular meal dining and no longer have food service.[3]

Personal Shopper: Personal shoppers are store employees that allow a person to shop in personal comfort. Employees can bring items to customers and open items freely, and a separate register in a secluded area allows purchases to be made without having to wait in line. Many personal shoppers can give extra "gifts" as well. Booking can be done in advance at Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, Minneapolis, and New York, with specific private shopping spaces.

Other locations offer some degree of shopping assistance in their stores they do not have a private room available or specific personal shoppers.

American Girl Hospital: If a doll needs to be sent to the American Girl Hospital, she can be sent out from the store at no shipping cost.

Doll Salon: Doll can have hair styled, receive cleaning, and get additions such as on-site piercing.

In flagship locations, an side salon offers purchasers to also get their ears pierced (using an piercing gun).

American Girl Exclusives: Each location has exclusive items that can only be purchased in the stores. These mostly consist of specific clothing and accessories for dolls as well as items that are used at the locations. Many shirts have the name of the stores on them. See the List of American Girl Place Items.

Party Hosting: On-site parties be hosted for a length of ninety minutes. Parties include cake, ice cream, meals (if bistros are present at the location), party activities and crafts, and offered treat bags for either 18" dolls, WellieWishers, Bitty Baby, or the current Girl of the Year if available. They take place in a private dining room as a Deluxe party, or more open spaces in bistros or selected store spaces for a lower fee.

Denver and Kansas City originally offered after-hours parties which took place in the store, as there is no bistro; now after-hours parties are not held and all parties are held in a separate section of the store. Seattle and Scottsdale offer cake, ice cream, and activities; they can also include pizza for an additional fee. Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York offer after-hours parties.

Hosted Events:Occasionally, activities will be advertised as extra experiences; these are mostly small craft activities or paid events based on lines, and some have been hosted or offered in the cafes as an add on to the dining room experience. Some stores with connections to local theaters or performances will set up events that include tickets to the performances.

Limited and Exclusive Giveaways and Launch Parties: Launch Parties for new released characters (such as Girl of the Year) or product launches and relaunches (such as BeForever, Truly Me, or WellieWishers) often include launch celebrations for the first three to four days of the release. Activities and exclusive item giveaways (often clothing or accessory items that fit an 18" doll) are frequently included to help advertise the new items.

Truly Me Signature Studio: Released with the launch of Truly Me. Custom doll-sized outfits, girl's shirts, and doll carriers can be designed and made in the store via a tablet computer. The outfits are printed on cloth. This is exclusively available in Chicago, New York, and Los Angeles, as well as part of the Create Your Own experience.

Former Available Activities

Theater: A small theater show was available in Chicago, New York, and Los Angeles. Shows included Circle of Friends and Bitty Bear’s Matinee: The Family Tree. The theaters were all removed in 2008.

Photo Studio: A picture could be taken by visitors in Chicago, New York, and Los Angeles, which was then modified to look like a cover of American Girl Magazine. In 2015, the Photo Studios in all three flagship stores were permanently closed.[4]

Creativi-tees: T-shirts that could be made in the store. Shirts were offered in doll and children's (7-20) sizes in pink, white and a light blue that was discontinued early on. Children's t-shirts were short-sleeved with a small square space for applying the decal, while doll tees could be short or long-sleeved. Purchasers were able to choose from twenty variant decal designs that changed regularly, and could observe the design being pressed onto the shirt. This was not available in Los Angeles. Creativi-tees started to be phased out in Summer 2017, in anticipation of the Create Your Own system of design.

Hotel Partnerships

Selected partner hotels, listed on the store website, offer special rates for those who book in relation to going to the store. A special package of a fold-out hotel bed (similar to the modern fold-up chair) may be added to the purchase. Partnering hotels are in very close radius to the store.

American Girl Place/Flagship Stores

The largest three American Girl stores--also called "flagship stores"--are generally large multi-floor planned stores. Along with all the offered amenities, AG Places include dioramas of historical and BeForever characters, extra bistros, larger window and diorama displays, inventory unavailable at other locations, and other unique amenities.

Historical characters Felicity Merriman, Addy Walker, and Samantha Parkington, as part of BeForever, are only available for physical purchase at flagship stores.

Chicago, IL: The first American Girl Place opened in Chicago, Illinois, on November 19, 1998; the store later moved to Water Tower Place in 2008. This was the first time any American Girl items could be purchased new directly from a walk-in location.

New York, NY: A second store was opened in New York City, New York, in Manhattan 2003. The store was later relocated to Rockefeller Center in November 2017.

Los Angeles, CA: A third store was opened in the Grove in Los Angeles, California, in 2006.

American Girl Boutiques and Bistros

In Fall 2007, two American Girl Boutiques and Bistros were opened, starting a trend of smaller stores in some locations. These are permanent store locations and, while generally considered anchor stores, generally take up less retail space than the three flagship stores.

Dallas, TX: American Girl Dallas was opened in 2007 at the Galleria.

Alpharetta, GA: American Girl Atlanta was opened in 2007 at the North Point Mall.

Natick, MA: The American Girl Boston was opened in 2008 at Natick Collection.

Bloomington, MN: The American Girl Minneapolis was opened in 2008 at the Mall of America.

Lone Tree, CO: American Girl Denver was opened in 2010 at Park Meadows. This store does not have a bistro.

Overland Park, KS: American Girl Kansas City was opened in 2010 at Oak Park Mall. This store does not have a bistro.

McLean, VA: American Girl Washington DC was opened in 2011 at Tysons Corner Center.

Lynnwood, WA: American Girl Seattle was opened in 2011 at Alderwood Mall. The bistro was the only one that offered items à la carte; in 2018 the cafe was closed to casual dining and no longer serves foods outside of birthday party treats.[3]

Chesterfield, MO: American Girl St. Louis was opened in 2012 at Chesterfield Mall. The location closed in February 2018 due to mall property issues. [5]

Houston, TX: American Girl Houston was opened in 2012 at Memorial City Mall.

Miami, FL: American Girl Miami was opened in 2012 at The Falls.

Columbus, OH: American Girl Columbus was opened in 2013 at Easton Town Center.

Palo Alto, CA: American Girl San Francisco was opened in 2013 at the Stanford Shopping Center.

Orlando, FL: American Girl Orlando was opened in 2014 at The Florida Mall.

Charlotte, NC: American Girl Charlotte was opened in 2014 at Southpark Mall.

Franklin, TN: American Girl Nashville was opened in 2015 at CoolSprings Galleria.

Scottsdale, AZ: American Girl Scottsdale was opened in 2015 at Scottsdale Quarter. In 2018 the cafe was closed to casual dining and no longer serves food outside of birthday treats.[3]

Temporary Boutiques

Temporary Boutiques are pop-up stores, either for American Girl to test potential support for a permanent store within the United States and reach out to new areas[6] or to offer short-term local purchasing during the holiday season in an area not as easily served by another location. Unlike the Boutiques and Bistros, Temporary Boutiques do not always offer the full salon experience (hair styling, ear piercing, hearing aids, and spa treatments) or personal shopping. Temporary Boutiques also do not carry the full lineup of available merchandise.[6]

Recurring Boutiques

Indianapolis, IN: American Girl Indianapolis has opened boutiques at several different locations.

  • Castleton Square Mall, running from October 2015 to January 2016, and again in July 2016 to January 2017.
  • The Fashion Mall at Keystone, running from August 2017 to January 2018.

Novi, MI: American Girl Detroit opened a boutique at Twelve Oaks Mall running from August 2016 to January 2017, and again from July 2017 to January 2018.

Raleigh, NC: American Girl Raleigh opened a boutique at Crabtree Valley Mall running from October 2016 to January 2017, and again from July 2017 to January 2018.

Portland, OR: American Girl Portland has opened boutiques at several different locations.

  • Pioneer Place, running from October 2015 to March 2016.
  • Washington Square Mall, running from August 2016 to January 2017, and again from September 2017 to January 2018.

Pittsburgh, PA: American Girl Pittsburgh opened a boutique at Ross Park Mall running from September 2016 to January 2017, and again from October 2017 to January 2018.

Murray, UT/Salt Lake City, UT: American Girl Salt Lake City has opened boutiques at several different locations.

  • The Fashion Place (Murray, UT), running from October 2015 to January 2016.
  • City Creek Center (Salt Lake City, UT), running from September 2017 to January 2018.

One-Time Boutiques

Honolulu, HI: American Girl Hawaii[7] opened a temporary boutique at Ala Moana Center, running from October 4, 2014, to April 2015.[8]

San Diego, CA: American Girl San Diego opened a boutique at the Fashion Valley Mall running from October 2015 to January 2016.

Mission Viejo, CA: American Girl Orange County opened a boutique at The Shops at Mission Viejo running from November 2015 to January 2016.

Glendale, CA: American Girl Glendale opened a boutique at The Americana at Brand running from October 2015 to February 2016.

Las Vegas, NV: American Girl Las Vegas opened a boutique at the Fashion Show Mall running from October 2015 to February 2016.

Philadelphia, PA: American Girl Philadelphia opened a boutique at King of Prussia Mall running from September 2016 to January 2017.

San Antonio, TX: American Girl San Antonio opened a boutique at The Shops at La Cantera running from August 2016 to January 2017.

Austin, TX: American Girl Austin opened a boutique at The Domain running from August 2017 to January 2018.

Specialty Boutiques

American Girl Specialty Boutiques are international outlets located outside of the United States. Unlike the Boutiques and Bistros, Specialty Boutiques are located within an already-established store; as licensee locations they are not considered a standalone store in their own right. (The Dubai and Manama stores are the exceptions as they function similarly to the Kansas City and Denver boutiques as standalone stores.) For the purposes of this section, multiple Specialty Boutiques located within the same city or metropolitan area will be given the appellation of American Girl (City name) (Store location).

Due to space constraints as well as legal restrictions on items (e.g. Canada's language laws mean that only items with bilingual English/French packaging may be sold), these stores have a smaller selection and often only carry a few characters and their collections.

Canada

At present, the Canadian stores carry limited collections: some BeForever characters (currently Nanea Mitchell, Melody Ellison, Rebecca Rubin, Julie Albright, Kit Kittredge and Maryellen Larkin[9]; Addy, Felicity, and Samantha can be ordered online through Chapters-Indigo but do not appear in stores), twenty-six Truly Me dolls (as opposed to the forty currently offered by AG itself), the Girl of the Year, Contemporary Characters, Bitty Baby, and WellieWishers, along with most but not all of the collections of these dolls.

Toronto, ON: American Girl Toronto may refer to the following locations.

  • American Girl Toronto Yorkdale was opened in 2014 within Indigo Toronto at the Yorkdale Shopping Centre.
  • American Girl Toronto Eaton was opened in 2015 within Indigo Eaton at the Toronto Eaton Centre.
  • American Girl Toronto Sherway was opened in 2016 within Indigo Sherway Gardens at CF Sherway Gardens.[10]

Vancouver, BC: American Girl Vancouver was opened in 2014 within Chapters Robson. In 2015, the Specialty Boutique was relocated to Chapters Granville following the closure of the Robson branch.[11]

Ottawa, ON: American Girl Rideau was opened in 2014 within Chapters Rideau.

Edmonton, AB: American Girl Edmonton was opened in 2015 within Chapters Edmonton at the West Edmonton Mall.

Calgary, AB: American Girl Calgary was opened in 2015 within Chapters Calgary at Chinook Centre.

Mexico

Mexico City, Mexico: American Girl Mexico City collectively referred to the three Specialty Boutiques in Mexico City, all located within El Palacio de Hierro department stores. The Mexican boutiques were closed in January 2018.[12]

  • American Girl Mexico Perisur was opened in 2015 at Centro Comercial Perisur and closed in 2018.
  • American Girl Mexico Interlomas was opened in 2015 at Paseo Interlomas and closed in 2018.
  • American Girl Mexico Polanco was opened in 2015 and closed in 2018.

United Arab Emirates

While it was revealed in a press release the UAE stores would have a restaurant,[13] neither the City Centre Mirdif nor the Mall of the Emirates websites mention the presence of a restaurant or cafe. American Girl's dedicated website for the Middle East region[14] also does not mention restaurants or cafes as a feature in the individual store pages.

Dubai, UAE: American Girl Dubai collectively refers to the two stores opened in partnership with Majid Al Futtaim Leisure and Entertainment.

  • American Girl Dubai Mirdif was opened in 2017 at the City Centre Mirdif.
  • American Girl Dubai Emirates was opened in 2017 at the Mall of the Emirates.

Bahrain

Manama, Bahrain: American Girl Manama was opened in 2018 at City Centre Bahrain.

Ordering from Stores

A person who does not live near an American Girl Place or Bistro can call customer service and may be directed to a personal shopper at the store and order items to be shipped to them. They may or may not have to pay taxes but will have to pay standard shipping costs. Many people do this for exclusives or when an item is retired; some stores have small stock of retired items when an item is no longer available for ordering at the website.

In Fall 2015, temporary kiosks were set up at various locations for customers to place orders as well for customers to facilitate quick purchases and holiday-only items.

Atlanta, GA: Perimeter Mall

Northbrook, IL: Northbrook Court

Minnetonka, MN: Ridgedale Center

Des Peres, MO: West County Center

Paramus, NJ: Garden State Plaza

Frisco, TX: Stonebriar Center

The Woodlands, TX: The Woodlands Mall

See Also

Links

References

  1. The locations in Denver and Kansas City are called American Girl Boutique as there is no bistro. The same is now true of American Girl Seattle and Scottsdale as of February 2018.
  2. Not all locations offer brunch.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 American Girl cuts staff, including 21 positions in Wisconsin; specifically: The other 36 job losses are in 10 of [American Girl]’s 20 retail stores, primarily in Scottsdale, Arizona, and in Seattle, where the bistros will end regular dining, Parks said. Jan 12, 2018. Accessed Feb 16th, 2018.
  4. Facebook statement, accessed January 30, 2015.
  5. St. Louis' only American Girl store, at Chesterfield Mall, closing next month, accessed Jan 5th, 2018.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Twitter statement, dated October 7, 2015.
  7. This is what American Girl referred to the Honolulu boutique as during its tenure.
  8. American Girl opening first Hawaii store at Ala Moana Center next month, bizjournals.com, accessed September 12, 2014
  9. Chapters-Indigo official website, accessed August 28th, 2017
  10. Indigo opens world's first cultural department store for booklovers and their friends at CF Sherway Gardens newswire.ca, accessed July 4, 2016.
  11. Indigo Optimizes Real Estate in Vancouver, newswire.ca, accessed January 21, 2015.
  12. American Girl cuts staff, including 21 positions in Wisconsin, Wisconsin State Journal, accessed February 5, 2018.
  13. Majid Al Futtaim brings American Girl to Middle East, accessed December 13, 2016.
  14. americangirlmena.com American Girl MENA, operated by Majid Al Futtaim Leisure & Entertainment.