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FAO Schwarz closing in New York City because rent too high

Stuart Monk / Shutterstock.com

Photo credit: Stuart Monk / Shutterstock.com

F.A.O. Schwarz, the iconic New York toy store, located at 767 Fifth Ave., is closing its doors at its New York flagship location because the rent is too high. A tenant since 1986, the high and rising rental costs prompted the owner, Toys R Us, to move the 153-year-old brand to a new location, possibly near Times Square. F.A.O. Schwarz, the oldest toy store in the U.S., has been in the city since 1870 and it has had two addresses since its opening.

The current location in the General Motors building, is scheduled to close on July 15 and reopen elsewhere in the city in late 2016. Offering three levels of bliss for adults and children alike, it offers a candy story, personal shoppers, the Muppet Whatnot Workshop, which offers visitors the opportunity to design their own ‘Muppet Whatnot’ from a wide selection of bodies, hairstyles, eyes, noses and costumes; specialty and high-end toys.

In 2014, Cushman & Wakefield Inc. reported that rents for companies situated on Fifth Avenue, from 49th to 60th streets, average around $3,500 per square foot for floor space. Its premier location in the epicenter of the shopping district and the inflated rent have not deterred others. Microsoft is opening its first flagship store at 677 Fifth Ave., formerly the Fendi location.