Five kids' playroom-style boutiques are set to be tested at Barnes & Noble stores on the East Coast. The 3,000-square-foot concepts will feature learning activities, interactive displays and characters.
The boutiques are comprised of five themed elements:
Building: critical thinking and problem solving with LEGO and Rokenbok
Learning: interactive reading through digital books and hand-held gaming, featuring a Nook station and products from LeapFrog
Imaging: creative thinking and cause-and-effect interactivity through toys from Playmobil, Calico Critters and Puppet Theater
Creating: interactive creativity using craft products from Crayola and American Girl
Playing: play supported by books, including toys from Thomas the Tank Engine, Olivia and Curious George
"Barnes & Noble has always been a destination for families who want to foster a lifelong love of reading. We're enriching that experience even further in five key stores with these expansive play areas, and fun and interactive activities, including Nook tables where even the little ones can play with the latest Nookcolor eReader," says Jaime Carey, chief merchandising officer at Barnes & Noble. "Just as Barnes & Noble has always helped customers pick quality books for themselves and their children, we want to help parents and their children choose quality educational toys and games in a very fun and hands-on way."
The test boutiques will be located at Barnes & Noble stores in Enfield, Conn., Manchester, Conn., North Brunswick, N.J., Holmdel, N.J., and Bronx, N.Y.
In related news, Barnes & Noble recently expanded its toys and games departments nationwide. The revamped section features educational toys and games from birth to age 12, as well as adult games and puzzles for ages 13 to adult. The departments now include more than 2,000 products.