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Best Classic Toy Store

FAO Schwarz
767 Fifth Ave.
212-644-9400 or fao.com

After two high-profile bankruptcies in one year, prospects for FAO’s reopening looked grim. But second acts do happen: The store did away with its old look-but-don’t-touch image, and now everything, it seems, is hands-on. Even if you can’t afford a $50,000 kid-size Ferrari that goes 15 mph, it’s there to ogle and caress—as is the $300,000 aviation-quality 3-D motion simulator. FAO also replaced mass-market toy lines with one-of-a-kind kiosks: Your child can design her own doll at the Madame Alexander Doll Factory or breed a plush pet at the American Kennel Club.

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