Opposite the Young Versace and Little Marc Jacobs stalls is Japanese mall Isetan’s toy selection. Unsurprisingly there is a significant native bent to what’s on offer. Shinkansen bullet train sets (249RMB), blazoned with katakana, sit the shelves and further evidence of the Tokyo origins of the department store can be seen in the wall of Gundam models that stand near the escalator. Model kits of the famous anime robots come in all sizes (1/44 through to Perfect Grade) and all prices (from 180RMB up to 3,000RMB respectively).
While the Japanese stock adds a unique flavour to Isetan’s offerings, there is plenty else for parents looking for an item less niche. Cute art supplies abound and crayon pencils go from 34RMB for a set of 24, or for the more discerning young artist a full 60-set Sakura-brand tin can be purchased (568RMB). Finger painting sets (338RMB) and iClay animals (173RMB-210RMB) are also available for children who fancy getting fully hands-on.
The Hape story on Jumen Lu may have closed, but their excellent products remain on the shelves here, including some larger items that we didn’t see elsewhere in Shanghai – a pink ‘grand piano’ (1,680RMB) the most impressive item. But other Western brands also feature: Quercetti (made in Italy) and Kiditec (Swiss) add to the impressive range of creative toys.
Isetan’s advantages don’t stop there. Many examples of the games and toys stocked are on display for children and parents to inspect and staff are frequently happy to play board games with kids. For an added bonus, visit on Saturday and Sunday between 2-6pm when Flexa the Clown strolls around the store entertaining youngsters with all manner of tricks.