Global lifestyle brand Sanrio has opened a Hello Kitty Shop at Universal Orlando Resort in the US.
Opened in conjunction with Universal Parks & Resorts, the store marks Sanrio’s official retail debut and Hello Kitty‘s first appearance at a theme park in North America. On Hollywood Boulevard in the theme park, the outlet offers specialty merchandise including stationery, home goods, apparel, accessories, collectibles and confectionery. Most product is exclusive to the park.
Other Sanrio characters including Badtz-Maru, Chococat, Keroppi, My Melody and Pompompurin are also be featured.
“Our partnership with Universal delivers a new touch point for the brand through special products, unique merchandising and a fully branded store experience that incorporates many of our beloved characters,” says Sanrio senior VP of brand management and marketing Jill Koch.
As well as shopping for exclusive merchandise, customers have photo opportunities at the show, can create souvenir versions of Hello Kitty’s signature bow, send letters and receive gifts.
With four specially themed areas within the Hello Kitty Shop, fans can find treats at the Hello Kitty Sweet Yummy Shop, loungewear and home goods in the Hello Kitty Lounge, multi-character accessories, stationery and gifts in the Hello Kitty and Friends Town, and collectibles featuring Sanrio characters reimagined with classic Universal properties in the Hello Kitty at the Movies area. New products and designs will be released regularly.
Guests can also meet Hello Kitty herself, with the 40-year-old Japanese icon making regular appearances.
Sanrio launched in 1960 and now has more than 50,000 branded items in more than 130 countries, and upward of 15,000 US retail locations including 80 Sanrio boutiques.
Academy Award-winning director Steven Spielberg is creative consultant for Universal Parks & Resorts, a unit of Comcast NBCUniversal, which wholly owns Universal Studios Hollywood, including Universal CityWalk Hollywood. It also owns Universal Orlando Resort and its two theme parks (Universal Studios Florida and Universal’s Islands of Adventure), four resort hotels and Universal CityWalk Orlando. It also has licence agreements with Universal Studios Japan in Osaka, and Universal Studios Singapore at Resorts World Sentosa, Singapore.
Comcast NBCUniversal also plans a theme park in Beijing and an indoor theme park in Moscow.