For years, there has been a blocked-off corner across the street from Jenny Wang’s in Lido. Recently that wall came down and suddenly, where there was once nothing, something great appeared – Baby International Blu and Pirate Bay.
Mix one part baby store, one part family restaurant, and one part play center, with equal measures of German and Chinese management and you get the one thing that has been sorely missing from the Lido neighborhood – a great hybrid family hang out.
Owner Nils and Lynn recently decided to relocate the Beijing branch of Baby International Blu from its CBD location. But in doing so, they wanted to create a space where parents could not just shop, but also relax over a great coffee and enjoy a meal while their children burn off some steam in a safe and fun indoor environment. With multiple stores in Shanghai, and plenty of experience to build on, the dynamic couple are certain they have crafted the perfect blend in their 600sqm Lido location.
Fueled by a German chef with over 20 years of experience, the restaurant will serve healthy salads, pastas made from scratch in the open kitchen, soups, and more. They also have fresh coffee (great espresso), a small selection of beer and wine, fresh juices, ice creams, and waffles. While you sit back and enjoy the Wi-Fi, a book, or chat with friends, your kids can romp in the pirate-themed play area that is geared to kids aged 5 and under, though it will also attract the eye of older siblings.
And then there is the fantastic selection of imported goods for all things related to babies – strollers, high chairs, car seats, diaper bags, bottles, blankets, educational toys, and doohickeys galore. The selection is of such high quality that the products will outlive multiple generations of children and look great in any home. I couldn’t help walking through the store and thinking, “I wish we had two of those, and I should buy two of that, and a pair of these, and a couple of those!” (we have twins after all).
Nils told me that they want the store to feel like a place where you can ask the staff for help and get real advice and answers without feeling pressured to buy. To assist in that endeavor, they even designed the showroom floor with a path of brinks and other surfaces so that parents can take strollers for a real test stroll right inside the shop.
All in all, Baby International Blu is a great hang out, in a great location, made by great parents for others to enjoy. And your kids will love it too.
If you would like to find out more about Baby International Blu or shop online, visit www.baby-international.com. You can also call 8450 1189 for information or directions, or drop in at 2 Jiangtai Lu daily from 10am-7pm.
Photos by Christopher Lay