define( 'WPCACHEHOME', '/home/sybrrgeek/' ); //Added by WP-Cache Manager Just a Barbie Girl, In the Barbie World

Just a Barbie Girl, In the Barbie World

lunch I know, I know, another long gap between posts. And actually lots has happened that I keep thinking ‘oh I need to write this down.’ Honestly I do not know where my time goes. Also when I started this I told myself I wasn’t going to just use it as a platform to show off my awesome kid and look, here I am doing it again! But I have to because I must tell you about our day at The Barbie Store.

There’s a 5 floor Barbie department store here in Shanghai. It only opened earlier this year, I think in Feb or March, and I’d read about it before we moved here. Hadn’t visited until about two weeks ago, on my own – sort of a recon mission before bringing The Little Empress, so I would know what I was getting into! G is in NYC this week, so us girls had the weekend to ourselves. It was really cold and rainy and I needed to take her somewhere where she could run around and have fun, but I honestly didn’t think I could stand going to another indoor playground ball pit thingie. It was time to introduce M to the great shrine of all things pink and plastic.

She’s not THE biggest Barbie fan, but she does have some DVDs of Barbie movies and a couple of (fake, from the street market) Barbie dolls. Right now it’s more about the movies than the dolls for her, but she has “Barbie stuff” as an entry on her list for Santa and she does really dig the movies. I knew she would have a brilliant time at the store – as you will see, it really is quite something.

We started out by having lunch at the Barbie Cafe on the top  (6th) floor, which, it must be said, is really rather good. I wasn’t able to get a good photo of the interior though, so you’ll have to tke my word for it that it is really quite chic. A bit art deco diner, a bit sixties pop art, a bit postmodern glam. Oh look, here’s a pic I was able to swipe off the net:cafe

M of course wanted to sit in one of the pink booths and we ordered off the special “Mom & Me” menu – a prix fixe lunch menu with one adult meal and one kid’s meal, plus a special gift for the child, 150 RMB. Not bad value. The gift M got was a very nice Barbie (duh) writing kit, a case with several pens and pencils, erasers, a ruler, that kind of thing. She of course was all kinds of in love with it straight away. Lunch was quite good; I had a pumpkin soup, corn salad, mango pork stir fry and watermelon slices, and M had pink pasta (I don’t want to know how they make it pink), potato wedges with pink mayo dipping sauce (again, don’t want to know), watermelon and corn on the cob (reassuringly yellow). Our meal deal also included dessert – pink lemonade, pink cake, bubblegum ice cream, and pumpkin spice chocolate chip cookies.


So then it was time to head down to the store itself. The 5th floor is mainly clothes and accessories for girls. We bought some slippers as she really did need some – it’s gotten far too cold here for bare feet! – and hey, there was 75% off sale on a bunch of clothing, so we got a cute little top as well. There’s also a little “Barbie bedroom” area up there with a slide

slideand one of these ‘stick your face in in the picture’ thingies (is there a specific name for such a thing?)

coupleAfter this we headed down to the 4th floor. Connecting the 3rd-5th floors is a spiral staircase, walled in clear perspex with Barbies all dressed in differnt pink outfits – it’s really quite striking.


The 4th floor is where all the dolls are. Lots and lots and lots of dolls.


(I am somewhat comforted that of all the options, M seems to be drawn to ‘Baby Doctor Barbie’…)


The 4th floor also has a a photo studio where girls can go and dress up like their favourite Barbie movie character, have a series of photos done, then the photos get put into a storybook so that they are ‘playing’ the central character. I know this may come as a complete surprise to some of you, but Barbie is not always Barbie – she is an actress you know, she plays other characters in her films. It’s all very complicated. We gave that a miss, in any case, for now. On the same floor there is a Barbie exhibition gallery,  a pretty fancy schmancy one at that, featuring displays of iconic Barbie designs. I can’t believe I’m saying this, but it’s actually really interesting and pretty

There is also a ‘design studio’ where you can go in and design your own outfit for Barbie, but that’s all a bit beyond M at the moment, so we didn’t go in. (Was positively humming with tweens in there though; I think it might have been a birthday party.) Instead we hung out for a bit with the giant shiny poodle.


Then we went down to the third floor and ‘did the Barbie’


and bought some jellybeans.


We bought the Barbie Party Mix, which as you might guess is rather heavy on the pink: mainly bubblegum and strawberry cheesecake, with vanilla, lemon and orange.


You’ll notice in that last photo you can see a big image of Barbie with a towel on her head; that is because around that corner is where you can get the escalator down to the Barbie Spa & Salon on the 2nd floor.  Again, M is a bit young for this (thankfully) but apparently they do a roaring trade in birthday party packages.

Hours later we emerged, not too much poorer (aside from lunch we only bought the slippers, top and some jellybeans) but with glammy shopping bags to show for our efforts anyway. It was good fun, guess who slept all the way home in the taxi and hasn’t stopped talking about the place since?


7 Responses to “Just a Barbie Girl, In the Barbie World”

  • Tarja says:

    I love the Barbie house! I had Barbitini drink upstairs and after that we went to the spa and had our nails done. Great place, no wonder M loved it too… =)

  • Sue Bichler says:

    that looks like a lot of fun. i’m glad you & M had fun. reminds me of the time my sister & i took sara into NYC & went to the American Girl doll store.

  • Jillian Werb says:

    I was going to say it reminded me of the American Girl store too.

    That floor full of dolls. Wow…

  • Libby says:

    Glad you had a fun time! I just have to say that spiral staircase circled by Barbies is dizzying!

  • kellie says:

    Ooo err, get you, taking your brood to the American Girl store! Are you going native? :-P

  • IncognitoMom says:

    Wow, too bad I have a son who would have no use for Barbies. I loved Barbies as a child. If we end up living in Shanghai I may have to borrow a new friend’s little girl (hmm, sounds a little creepy but really I mean no harm) just so I have an excuse to go to this amazing Barbie store without looking like a grown idiot ogling dolls.

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