American Girl Arrives in Canada

Calling all grandparents and the girls they love to spoil!

American Girl dolls have arrived in Canada.

Saturday is the Grand Opening of American Girl Boutiques in Indigo at Ontario’s Yorkdale Shopping Centre and in Chapters Vancouver on Robson St. (See below for ticket distribution information for the opening.)

American Girl books have long been available at Indigo and Chapters.

Now a curated collection of the 18” girl dolls and 15” baby dolls, clothing, accessories and some furniture is also available.

Accessories include everything a doll could desire or require, including ice skates, snowboards, pets, ponies, eyeglasses, ballet barre, matching doll/girl outfits, even wheelchairs and crutches — presumably for when one breaks an ankle snowboarding.

What may be the biggest surprise for Canadians unfamiliar with the American Girl universe (besides the doll’s $125 price tag) is the beauty salon for dolls. Services for dolls include hair styling, a deluxe spa experience (the word “dermabrasion” was uttered at the press preview) and ear piercing.

The iconic American Girl brand has been expanding across the U.S. with destination stores since the first one opened in Manhattan 30 years ago.

American Girl weekends in Chicago or New York have been popular with Canadian mothers and daughters for years.

No longer will Canadians have to cross the border or order from the U.S. website to treat their little darlings to the American Girl experience. Plus, they’ll find the prices here are more than fair: a doll costing $125 Canadian here sells for $120 U.S. across the border.

The 1800 sq. ft. boutique at Yorkdale is designed and set up exactly like a smaller version of the main American Girl stores.

Dolls and their accessories are showcased behind glass in scenes but also available for touching, handling and holding.

Unlike most U.S. locations, the Canadian boutiques don’t include bistros or cafes.

Also, none of the historical dolls, which represent different eras in American history (including Caroline whose father fought on their side in the War of 1812), are included in the carefully and smartly curated Canadian collection.

Instead, there’s a focus on dolls involved activities girls enjoy and especially on the current Doll of the Year, Isabelle, a budding blonde ballerina.

But what’s irresistible to grandmothers (certainly to this one who has five little girls in her life) are the lookalike dolls. You can choose from 26 dolls with different eye colours and eye shapes, skin colours, hair colours and style of hair, whether very curly, wavy, straight and with or without bangs.

Best of all, when you give a girl an American Girl doll, you don’t ever have to wonder what gift to get her in the future. There’s a whole American Girl universe to choose from.
Canadians who don’t have access to the boutiques in Toronto and Vancouver can order American Girl dolls and merchandise at the kiosks in Indigo and Chapters stores.

The Grand Opening parties at the two stores, with music, gifts and surprises, will continue through the weekend.

The following information about ticket distribution for the Grand Opening appears on the Indigo/Chapters website.

All adults and children will require a ticket for entry to shop the new American Girl Specialty Boutique.

Tickets will be distributed at each location on a first-come first-serve basis starting 7 a.m. on May 3rd for entry on that day. All adults and children must be present to receive a ticket (maximum one per person). Please arrive early to avoid disappointment!

Note: Tickets will also be distributed at 7 a.m. on May 4th for entry on that day on a first-come, first-serve basis. Same event rules and details apply.