I had reservations about visiting the new store, it had previously been the Toy Shoppe, a favourite of ours for Birthdays, Christmas and just a fun place to go and we weren't too sure we were going to like the change. But the new Mastermind is simply unbelievable, I can not tell you how impressed I was. Thankfully the owner of the Toy Shoppe, Cylde, is the manager of the new Mastermind Toys and it was fantastic to visit with him. I was really pleased to see how accessible Cylde was, he gave a tour of the new store, listed all the fantastic new features, introduced me to the staff, including the new assistant manager Mike (Hi Mike! - he said he would check out my blog).
Really, I have to break into point form to explain everything I'm loving about the new store..
* the building is one wide open square (an improvement on the previous design that had multiple rooms and high shelving)
* all the shelves are very low and spaced so that no matter where you are in the store you can see almost everything - perfect for keeping track of the kiddos and helping you find exactly what you are looking for
* the atmosphere is amazing - colourful, bright, there are awesomely huge animals everywhere, it looks like something out of a storybook, it really does, I have never been in a store that projects that look
* multiple play stations for children to check out the toys, including a Thomas table, a Chuggington table, a big garage toy and more
* the book display is fantastic, the way it's set up makes it easy to see everything, the boys had a great time checking out the rows of books
During our trip we got 2 Thomas trains the boys have been dying for, Molly and the Thomas Christmas engine. We also got 2 books - Thomas and a Toopy and Binoo, 2 Halloween candy kabobs and I can't tell you about the last one, it's a Christmas present (yes, I'm Christmas shopping already!!). I was so excited to hear they provide free gift wrapping in very cool paper that's exclusive to Mastermind. The boys took off with their stuff so fast all I could get a picture of was the Christmas present and one cute Halloween kabob..haha..
I highly recommend Mastermind for presents, a treat for the kids or just a fun visit. From the moment you walk in and are greeted right away, to checking out the really cool animals and displays, finding toys - many of which I have honestly never seen at any other store, to seeing the wonder on your child's face, it's a fantastic experience and a new gem in London Ontario.
I know I'll be heading back for their Grand Opening Party October 15th and 16th - who else is going to be there??