Boom! A huge toy shop called X11 opened at the beginning of May, taking up two floors inside Joffre 688 on Huaihai Zhong Lu. Right down the road are a bunch of other flagship retail stores like Muji, niko and…, etc.
X11 already has a few branches in town, but this one, with a central location, is so far the most spacious and comprehensive yet. It boasts a massive range of collectibles from anime, comics, manga, or whatever it is people nerd out about in your culture. The space is stylish and futuristic with a minimalist design. The ground floor mainly sells figurines from smaller domestic cartoons and big names like Marvel.
There are three popular DC figures displayed in life size. Spoiler alert: they’re Batman, Aquaman, and Wonder Woman. Lots of people are taking selfies with them as if they were in Madame Tussaud’s. Wanna take these superheroes home? Actually… you can! As long as you don’t mind paying more than 20,000rmb - that's the equivalent of about 200 burgers at Five Guys, 6,666 rides on the metro, or 1sqm of property on the outskirts of Shanghai.
Bruce Lee is also here to protect the shop with his kung fu.
Apart from animated characters, you will find soft and fluffy animal toys from the famous UK brand Jellycat.
Downstairs, there is more merchandise to explore, from mainly Japanese anime, including Naruto, Pokémon, Dragon Ball and other stuff that could have only come from a Japanese imagination. No Studio Ghibli though.
A variety of Mobile Suit collections are showcased carefully behind a glass cover. These things drive anime geeks wild. Believe it or not, some otaku (Japanese word for geeks) would skip meals to save up for a model. This is the power of the hobby.
Qposket, a company known for delicate models in the affordable price range (100-200rmb), also have their products here in the form of cute Disney and Harry Potter figurines.
In addition, the basement offers other entertainment selections including puzzles, car models, DIY doll houses and more.
Besides all this, the shop has thoughtfully prepared a silver tunnel for you to pose for photos in, but to be fair, the whole place is already very instagrammable.
In terms of pricing, some items here are cheaper online while others are around the same. If you’re not in a rush, it’s always worth a check on Taobao.
Any toy lover could happily spend a day - if not - at least an hour or two perusing the merch at X11, even if they don’t end up buying.
X11 Flagship Store is located at 688 Huaihai Zhong Lu, near Ruijin Yi Lu. / 淮海中路688号, 近瑞金一路.