by Spencer Bollettieri, freelance writer for Theme Park Magazine
In the spirit of playtime and through the magic of imagination, the beloved dolls from Mattel have invited guests to join them at The Malibu Barbie Café, presented by Bucket Listers. More than a restaurant and larger-than-life in its presentation, the collaboration between Mattel and Bucket Listers has produced a pink plastic paradise where California dreamin’ becomes a reality. With food, drinks, and plenty of life-sized playsets to experience, Barbie’s first pop-up encourages guests of all ages to shine on as part of their very own toy story.
Bucket Listers and Mattel: Masters Behind the Magic
Behind such experiences as The Santa Clauses Winter Wonderland and The Golden Girls Kitchen, Bucket Listers curates countless events across 12 notable US cities, providing guides of things to do for over 15 million people. Meanwhile, since 1945 Mattel toy company has been the mind behind some beloved toybox favorites such as Barbie®, Hot Wheels®, Masters of the Universe® and Monster High®. Both Bucket Listers and Mattel collaborated to bring the Malibu Barbie Café to Manhattan on May 17th and Chicago on June 7th. This unique dining experience invites guests to immerse themselves in Barbie’s nostalgic beach party, where the food is hot, the drinks are pink, and everyone is perfectly accessorized.
An Oasis of Nostalgia: The Iconic Beach Party Experience
Although located in Manhattan’s scenic South Street Seaport, The Malibu Barbie Café brings guests back in time to the iconic release that cemented Barbie as the classic California girl in 1971. Inside The Malibu Barbie Café, visitors can immerse themselves in life-sized scenes that encourage exploration. Within the pop-up, guests can enjoy sipping pink lemonade while taking in the view from a lifeguard station or join a friend on a sandy slice of the California coast. As for those who want to showcase their Barbie beauty, they can pose for pictures in a package that comes complete with neon-colored accessories. ” At Mattel, we are always looking for exciting, new ways to bring the Barbie experience to life,” says Julie Freeland, Senior Director of Location Based Entertainment. The Malibu Barbie Café offers more than just an opportunity to play in Barbie’s world; it invites people to become part of it through its groovy atmosphere.
At The Malibu Barbie Café, guests can indulge in imaginative west coast cuisine. Renowned Master Chef semi-finalist Becky Brown, entrusted with Barbie’s Dream Kitchen, has crafted a menu that offers a variety of Barbie-inspired selections. For the price of a reservation, visitors can choose an entree and a side from the menu, with other items available to purchase a la carte.
All-Day Barbie Brunch: A Taste of the Golden State
The all-day brunch at The Malibu Barbie Café caters to the young and the young-at-heart, featuring colorful dishes such as the Pacific Paradise Rainbow Pancakes, the California Dreamin’ Club Sandwich, and the Golden Coast CALI-flower Bowl. In addition to Barbie’s brunch menu, the bar serves signature cocktails and mocktails like the Think Pink Margarita and the 219Cosmo. Meanwhile, to satisfy those with a sweet tooth, the café offers desserts, including items like the Make a Difference Macarons and a Dreamsicle Sundae. However, for those who like it light on sugar, in partnership with Swoon, The Malibu Barbie Café has a limited-edition, sugar-free Barbie-Pink Lemonade made with Monk fruit. At The Malibu Barbie Café, Chef Becky Brown’s menu is just as much part of the immersion as the nostalgic surroundings, letting New Yorkers experience the west coast through culinary creativity and a taste of the Golden State.
Known for her iconic wardrobe and seemingly endless closet, it wouldn’t be Barbie if visitors couldn’t embrace their inner fashionista. The Malibu Barbie Café Beach Shop offers a variety of exclusive merchandise, including t-shirts, trinkets, and other accessories. Additionally, Barbie dolls are available for individuals of all ages to take home and cherish as a part of this special occasion.
A Doll’s Legacy: The Barbie Impact Across Generations
Above all else, The Malibu Barbie Café is a family-oriented experience. Although Bucket Listers and Mattel encourage everyone, regardless of age, to join in on the fun because, since her debut in 1959, Barbie and her friends have bridged the generational gap in a way that few toys have. In addition to an upcoming movie and the anticipated Mattel Adventure Park, Bucket Lister’s pop-up showcases the ongoing growth of the doll’s legacy. The Malibu Barbie Café serves as a testament to the enduring lessons the blond icon has to teach about the power of imagination, the value of friendship, and the confidence to make dreams come true.
Explore More: Videos
Hoda and Jenna get a first look at the pop-up Malibu Barbie Café
Step Into the World of Barbie at the Malibu Barbie Cafe in New York City
Explore More: Resources
All images by V.Misiti except for the feature image, which is courtesy of Bucket Listers
About Spencer Bollettieri: As a biologist, journalist, and writer, Spencer Bollettieri has written for sites such as Screen Rant. Although mostly based out of New York, he’s traveled the world in pursuit of new stories.