Posting about Brian's local vintage toy shop reminded me of a store I visited when I was in New York with Missus Moonbase in February 2001 celebrating my Fortieth.
The shop was called ALPHAVILLE. I'd seen their beautiful website online many times and was always impressed by how stylish it was. I really wanted to stop by whilst we were there, so one day we made our way across Manhattan to the shop on West Houston Street.
ALPHAVILLE was everything we hoped it would be - bright, breezy, full of light and stuffed with vintage toys tastefully displayed - just like their iconic website.
There were gorgeous plastic red and yellow Jeeps in header bags, space toys, penny toys and loads of great old stuff in bulk. It was clean and tidy too, no motes of dust, which is what I was used to in dowdy old toy shops here in the UK. This was New York after all!
The friendly young bearded patron, Steve Karchin, was on hand to answer anything we asked too.
I think I bought some lovely carded Street Racer keyrings and a couple of Green Hornet lunch boxes for my own toy fair stall, which were going for a song and recall leaving feeling really pleased we'd made the journey to the store.
Checking online today I was saddened to see that Alphaville closed its doors for the last time in 2010 after 16 years of trading. What a shame but I'm extra glad now that we managed to visit. The closure was covered in the press at the time here
They still trade online and the Alphaville website is a joy: stylish, retro, uncluttered, just like it always was. Check it out: ALPHAVILLE