Best of Boston

BEST Toy Store

2016 BEST Toy Store

Henry Bear’s Park

Whether you’re shopping for an infant or a 12-year-old this toy heaven has just about every plaything imaginable. Choose from polka-dotted sidewalk chalk marble maze sets and illuminated construction blocks to unleash your little tyke’s imagination. You’ll also find a… read more»

2015 BEST Toy Store
Magic Beans-Best Toy Store

Magic Beans

Brookline

Restless kids? No problem. Multiple locations of this locally owned emporium have on-site play spaces and all encourage tykes to take for-sale scooters for trial spins around the floor. Toilet trainer? Spacious restrooms are stocked with seats stools and wipes…. read more»

2014 BEST Toy Store
Photograph by Toan Trinh

Stellabella Toys

So often, toy shopping is an experience in extremes: You’re either wading in aisle-to-aisle plastic packaging or browsing precious baubles curated to please parents’ aesthetics, not kids’. Stellabella, however, has found the sweet spot at its four Boston-area stores. Its… read more»

2013 BEST Toy Store
Photo by Jesse Burke

Curious George

Cambridge

Anatomy of a Winner: We all shed tears when our favorite impetuous primate and his long-suffering companion, the man with the yellow hat, lost their Harvard Square home in 2011. Luckily, the world’s only Curious George store reopened in the… read more»

2012 BEST Toy Store

Stellabella Toys

Cambridge

What you won’t find here: Bratz dolls, shoot-’em-up Xbox games, and Disney Princess overload. What you will find: instruments, fantastical costumes, and puzzles you’ll be tinkering with long after the kiddos are in bed. read more»

2011 BEST Toy Store
Photograph by Jared Leeds

Persnickety Toys

North Adams

You won’t find any beeping plastic doodads here. The name of this shop evokes both the fantastical nature of the toys on sale and the owner’s choosiness in selecting only those that meet her exacting standards. Shelves here overflow with… read more»

2011 BEST Toy Store
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Henry Bear’s Park

Boston

This locally grown stalwart earns our salute by appealing to kids and parents alike. Stocking time-honored brands like Alex, Gund, and Manhattan Toy at a variety of price points, Henry Bear’s makes it that much easier to say yes to… read more»

2009 BEST Toy Store, Children's
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Stellabella Toys

Cambridge

Playtime is a serious business for this locally owned favorite, which packs its sizable stores (including a new Burlington outpost) with 2,000-plus toys that skew eco-friendly, high-quality, and American-made. Parents’ peace of mind comes with purchase, if not—given the volume… read more»

2008 BEST Toy Store

Stellabella Toys

Cambridge

You’ve got years to share the benefit of your lessons learned with the next generation (video-game mastery is not a marketable skill; Elvis Costello is always better with the Attractions). For now, let your kids figure things out by doing… read more»

2007 BEST Toy Store

Henry Bear’s Park

Boston

Finding the right playthings can be something of a tightrope walk—they need to be educational but not boring, creative but not too messy, fun but without an overabundance of grating beeps and whistles. Henry Bear’s Park has been striking that… read more»