If you were a gal that grew up in the 80s or 90s, you might have been lucky enough to have gotten an American Girl Doll. I was, and in my young twenties I passed the dolls onto someone, or sold them-I’m not even sure. And, of course I now have a daughter who just loves dolls!
The American Girl store in Scottsdale opened in August of 2015, so it’s still relatively new. There are also other stores around the country, and Scottsdale’s store is on the middle to small side, but still has a lot to offer!
First of all, you have to get there. I have driven many, many times in Scottsdale but not in Scottsdale Quarter, where the American Girl store is located. It is very close to Kierland , but not in the same shopping plaza. If you just put in the address 15059 and not the #100, you will end up driving around Scottsdale Quarter. the streets in there are quite narrow and there is street parking, which I don’t recommend. If you have an older GPS, you might end up in the wrong place as well.
My suggestion is to go from Scottsdale Road to N Greenway Haydel Loop to N 73rd Place. Go South on 73rd place until you see signs for the parking garage to the east. Park in the parking garage, which will be near the American Girl store. I believe you can also enter from N 73rd Street and E Butherus Dr. There is no charge for the parking garage (on the day I was there). I did not see any ticket booths, but I did see places that they will wash your car while you are there (hmm interesting). Also, be careful if you are on the first level not to trip on the rubber mats in the garage that they have laid out. One other important fact, do not go all the way down the stairs, as the American Girl entrance is above street level. I did not see an elevator on the part of the garage we were in, but I believe there was an elevator on the north west section of the parking garage.
This is what the garage looked like. Unfortunately, we had to pass the “designated smoking area” from the garage to the area where American Girl store was located, which always makes me gag and cough quite a bit. I’m a sensitive gal.
Someone was super excited! Unfortunately, without jumping a fence and going down about 8′ , I wasn’t able to take a picture of the whole store from the outside. But, there are some banners above the windows that mark it as “American Girl” on E Butherous Drive. You may also wonder-why is there a huge patio outside of American Girl? Well, they have some promotions where they have doll launches, and breakfasts with Santa and Easter Bunny and lots of other activities and events!
The inside of the store is PINK!! SO SO SO pink! There is a tile entry way and greeters everywhere to help direct you to where you may want to search. Luckily, we had our own tour guide (It was really lovely because Shanel, Assistant manager, spent a few hours with me going over what American Girl had been up to in the last 25 years!).
A little American Girl Jargon I got caught up with (with help of the ever patient and funny Shanel) was:
Girl of the Year- each year American Girl creates a new doll based on customer feedback. This is the dolly that usually causes some long, long lines because of its limited availability.
WellieWishers-for the younger girl wanting an American Doll. A little smaller (and less expensive) in price, and a little more durable for younger hands. There are five dolls right now and the line was released last year. They also have clothing for dolls and matching with kids that is age and size appropriate.
BeForever-Like the dolls that I grew up with and more added onto the line (If you grew up in the 80s-90s and had one, you might have had Kirsten, Samantha and Molly). These dolls all have books associated with them that are historical fiction. They have a huge line of different types of outfits that fit with them, and accessories
Truly Me- These are the dolls that you can have that look like you, or look nothing like you, etc. There is a huge line of different items that you can use to accessories
Bitty Baby- Baby dolls that look just like babies, with a full line of accessories for them as well.
Alright..now that you are on sort of my understanding level of who and what -lets talk about where!
Right by the door was some of the books they have-the classic “BeForever” book line with historical fiction, and the other line of books that I have in front of me on the picture-of girls going through changes. From going to middleschool, to puberty to dealing with friends, they have you covered!
Giggles checking out the display cases with Julie, a BeForever doll.
The Wellie Wishers line, that grabbed Giggles Heart! (there was even a little show about it below, so daughter can watch and mom can shop!)
The Doll Hair salon, where you can watch someone do your dolls hair (and learn how to take care of it as well). There is a fee for this. But, if you are like I was in the 80s and totally brushed your dolls hair with your own brush and then it went into a frizzy disasterpiece, it may be worth it !
You can also get tee’s printed for your doll and one to match your doll!
They have dogs for the dolls, and other pets for the dolls. And even service pets too!
I think this was the biggest wow moment of the trip when Shanel told me that if you have a child who is going through cancer or another big life issue, you can purchase a doll without hair. When the child is well, and if you choose, you can get the child’s dolls “head” replaced for no cost with a head of hair! That’s an amazing thing for children who go through such a hard experience.
They also have other accessories you can buy for dolls-wheelchairs, hearing aids, braces-and if they don’t have it and you suggest it-they work on it!
American Girl also puts on free craft events at the store on Thursdays (ages 8 and up). They have also partnered up with different local venues in the past for book readings and crafts. We will post them on the Surprise AZ Mom Facebook Page .
This is the cute little bistro (with an actual restaurant, yes!), and the private dining area for special events-like birthday parties! There are just a few tables here and stool seating. A reservation is highly suggested since there is such limited seating. You can also see there are pocketbook hooks on the little bar area.
The menu had quite a few favorite items for both kids and moms. Prices were about a normal price for the food and portions were generous!
But enough about what mom thought, how about the chairs you can attach to the table and the dolls you can borrow! You are also very welcome to bring your own doll as well!
Oh, did you have to go to the bathroom? What are you going to do with your doll while you, you know? Stick it in your purse? ohhh, no they thought of that!
My biggest question was…are the doll hangers in the men’s room too? Oh yes, they have them in the men’s bathroom too! (YAY) And, there are diaper changing stations too!
There is also a doll “hospital” where you can drop off your doll for “medical” help, but they do get shipped out for extensive help. The staff will be very caring and act like doctors and explain to the children in a kid friendly way what will happen with their dolls. They will also confer with the parents about the hospital bill.
Birthday Parties are also available at this location as well as other special events. American Girl also partners up with local hotels ( like the Princess in Scottsdale) for those who may be traveling-to also have accommodations for little girl’s doll friends! I also asked, having two boys, if boys ever attend the parties-they definitely have and are more than welcome to join. They currently do not have any boy dolls
If you haven’t ever been to the American Girl Store, I highly suggest going-and it can be a multigeneration event! There were many young girls with their moms and grandmas (And every mom my age was saying what I was thinking-“Man, they didn’t have this when I was a kid-I missed out!). And, of course, Grandma will want to maybe purchase something extra special for their granddaughter!!
It’s a lovely store and they will be having lots of events throughout the year, so stay tuned!!
15059 N Scottsdale Rd #100