Les Mills International
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Les Mills International

Hamleys adds to retail experience with theme park concept in new Moscow toy store

Global toy retailer Hamleys has taken the first step to becoming an experience brand after opening a mini theme park in its new Moscow store – also the largest toy shop in Europe.

The new retail concept was developed by design studios Fitch and Paragon Creative within Moscow's Detsky Mir building.

Hamleys Moscow offers shoppers and visitors nine “worlds of play”, including Enchanted Forest, Imagination, Lego World, Magic Kingdom, Metropolis, Motor City, Park, Safari and Space.

“We decided that if we were going to open a toy store that was 75,000sq ft it couldn't be a normal toy shop – that would just be too big,” said Hamleys chief executive, Gudjon Reynisson.

“We decided to create something new - a concept where brands interact with attractions in a manner more akin to a theme park.

“It has taken us three years but I can say we pulled it off. This store is starting a new era in toy retail. There's nowhere anywhere like it. This is now the best toy shop in the world.”

On display is a full-scale replica of the Millennium Falcon made famous in Star Wars, a train, a go-karting track, castle and a 13 metre (42.6 foot) high Lego rocket.

Speaking exclusively to AM2, Mark Pyrah, director of Paragon, said the company has been working actively with Hamleys to turn the toy brand from a pure retailer into a new leisure/retail experience operator.

“Paragon provided design services alongside to Fitch,” said Pyrah. “Fitch focused on the layout, retail planning and brand immersion, while Paragon looked at the concept design of the attractions. We turned what would have been a flagship Hamleys store into what we’re now calling ‘Hamleys World’ – a Hamleys which incorporates retail and leisure.

“Over the past two years, we’ve been working closely with Hamleys to develop the new format and morph it into a theme park environment.”

Located in the same building that housed the former Soviet Union’s largest toy shop, the retailer’s new store in Moscow’s Lubyanka Square, just steps away from the Kremlin, will take the title of world’s largest toy store if Toys R Us in New York’s Times Square follow through with reported plans to either close down or downsize by 2016.

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12 Feb 2014

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Global toy retailer Hamleys has taken the first step to becoming an experience brand after opening a mini theme park in its new Moscow store – also the largest toy shop in Europe. The new retail concept was developed by design studios Fitch and Paragon Creative within Moscow's Detsky Mir building. Hamleys Moscow offers shoppers and visitors nine “worlds of play”, including Enchanted Forest, Imagination, Lego World, Magic Kingdom, Metropolis,
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The new Hamleys is located in the same building that housed the former Soviet Union’s largest toy store / Paragon Creative
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Les Mills International
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