Monday, November 22, 2004

FAO Schwarz Flagship Store on New York's Fifth Avenue

Scheduled to Reopen On Thanksgiving Day

NEW YORK (November 22, 2004 ) - For more than a century, FAO Schwarz has enchanted children and adults alike with its unequaled collection of toys and other fine children's products. Now, FAO Schwarz is unveiling its redesigned flagship store on Fifth Avenue at 58th Street in New York. The world-famous store is scheduled to open its doors at 10:00 AM on Thanksgiving Day (Thursday, November 25). Its launch follows the October 22 re-opening of FAO Schwarz's Las Vegas store, located within The Forum Shops at Caesars Palace.

FAO Schwarz also recently launched a new full-featured Web site at, making its unique selection of merchandise available to online shoppers around the world in time for the holiday season. A new catalog made its debut in September.

"Beyond being the world's oldest and finest toy store, FAO Schwarz is a cherished institution and a New York City landmark. We feel privileged to have the opportunity to bring the store back for the pleasure of today's children and those of future generations," said Dr. David E. Shaw, chairman of the top-level parent company of the D. E. Shaw group, which purchased FAO Schwarz earlier this year. "The holidays just wouldn't be the same without FAO Schwarz."

"We are building on the store's 142-year legacy, preserving the tradition of exceptional quality and service that has always defined FAO Schwarz while enhancing the store experience for a new generation," said Jerry Welch, FAO Schwarz's chief executive officer. "At the same time, our new Web site and the FAO Schwarz catalogue give us additional channels to reach customers across the globe."

A favorite destination for New Yorkers and tourists alike, FAO Schwarz offers a collection of toys, gifts and collectibles unmatched anywhere in the world. The store, which was redesigned in collaboration with the internationally renowned Rockwell Group, features a breathtaking Grand Hall adorned with more than 20,000 computer-controlled colored lights, a giant dance-on piano keyboard, and "FAO Schweetz," a classic New York ice cream parlor serving incredibly lavish, one-of-a-kind desserts.

FAO Schwarz was founded by Frederick August Otto Schwarz, who opened his first store in Baltimore in 1862 and relocated to lower Manhattan in 1870. The New York flagship store moved to its current location in 1986.

In New York, FAO Schwarz is located at 767 Fifth Avenue, at 58th Street (212) 644-9400. The FAO Schwarz store in Las Vegas is located at The Forum Shops at Caesars Palace (702) 796-6500. Customers can also shop online at or place orders toll-free by calling (800) 426-8697.