Harrods, the London department store famed both for its expansiveness and the ease with which an guileless tourist toting an oversized bag can be unceremoniously tossed out of its doors, unveiled its first gender-neutral department store last week, and, if you're into toys (if you think you're not, now would be a great time to stop lying to yourself), this new addition will prove spectacular. Seriously — the stuffed animals are huge and there's enough candy to keep a whole county of dentists busy for seven years.
For the toy store redesign, Harrods commissioned London and Singapore-based interior designers Shed, who boast a particular expertise in retail spaces. Instead of partitioning the toy department by gendered gatherings of toys, Shed created what it's calling "retail entertainment" — the department sprawls over several thematic "zones," including an enchanted forest, a miniature toy world, circus big top and a sweet shop. The unveiling of the new toy department coincided pretty perfectly with the Olympics, so we can all expect that lucky parents from all over the world had the privilege of spending the equivalent of a business-class ticket back to their home countries on oversized trinkets that can't be easily transported on commercial airplanes. That's okay, though! A child's fleeting happiness has no price.
Harrods unveils its first gender-neutral toy department [Smart Planet]