LEGO - Boutique Hotel #10297 Review & Lighting Journal

Happy New Year everyone! We hope you all had a great festive season, a much deserved break with plenty of time to work on those LEGO sets that you accumulated over 2021 (hopefully Santa left a few in your stocking as well!) We sure did! One in particular should come as no surprise - LEGO's latest Modular Building, the Boutique Hotel!

All mayors of a LEGO City know to expect a Modular Building at the start of each year, so January always kicks off with a bang for those of us who look forward to adding a further location to our studded streets! You can count Light My Bricks in that camp! The previous year is always full of grand speculation as to what the next Modular landmark may be, and this year was no exception! Everything from a Hospital to a Bowling Alley was rumoured across all of the LEGO Blogosphere and for good reason - 2021 marks the 15 year anniversary of the Modular Building line, and we all know LEGO never miss an opportunity to celebrate!

The Boutique Hotel is certainly a reason to celebrate! It took a few of us off by (pleasant) surprise with its 'corner' design, but more on that below! Some brick fans out there brought attention to the fact that the first corner modular available, the Cafe Corner was being retired in 2021 and that this may have played a factor in LEGO's design decisions. Who's to say really? What we were interested in was the sets details and of course we're not disappointed!

The stylish new addition packs a ton of cheeky nods to the series' history as you would have expected with a set that's celebrating 15 years of modular city planning (says it right there on the box!) but the build also stands on it's own, anniversary or not! Weighing in at a decent 3066 pieces and measuring your standard 25cm by 25cm, the Boutique Hotel sits on a standard 32 stud baseplate. It is worth noting that the mammoth modular Assembly Square, which LEGO released at the 10 year modular mark was on an enormous 48 stud plate, maybe we'll see another supersize set like this in 5 years time when we mark 20 years. The clock's ticking!

The build process was a real treat and it was especially enjoyable observing the triangular floor plan of the build, something we'd not seen before. Our designers watched on wondering if this would produce any cable management challenges, quietly confident that they'd solved every issue for each Modular that had come before the Boutique… some diagonally directioned bricks wouldn't stop them now!

Ambience is always high on the list of notes our designers want to hit with not only Modular Buildings, but all kinds of high detail sets (Winnie The Pooh, Harry Potter and Sesame Street all come to mind) but with the Boutique Hotel this was paramount based on the sets elegant, turn-of-the-century European design. If you put your imagination caps on (not hard for LEGO fans!) you can believe the Boutique Hotel has been hosting all kinds of classy guests for over 100 years, so tasteful, warm and cozy ambience is what the brickitect ordered for each room. Carefully places Warm White Bit Lights in each lamp produced the required effect.

The lamps didn't stop there in this detailed decorative build, they continued out onto the rooftop terrace! Our designers thought it fitting to use two of our posable Spotlights, carefully positioned to bring attention to the hotel's magnificent looking facade. The idea here is to not just place our LEDs inside LEGO elements shining out, but also tasteful shining down and on certain parts of the build to again add realistic ambience and highlight the incredible detail sets like this offer.

Perhaps the most signature celebration of Modular Buildings is the removable floors, revealing yet even more detail in the interior. The Modular Building series has pushed Light My Bricks as a company to pioneer several lighting techniques over the years and high on that list are our Wireless Connectors. These 2-Stud stars allow Modular Building fans to seamlessly light each floor while still allowing the - you guessed it, wireless removal of each floor! Sacrificing neither playability nor displayability and functioning like turning off a room light to sleep at night.

There you have it! The Boutique Hotel light kit is complete and that marks 15 years of Modular Buildings! Blow out the 15 candles and power up the iconic custom LMB Street Lamps (of course we included one here). It's no secret that the Modular Buildings are among our favourite sets to build and of course design light kits for, the ultimate breeding ground for next level break-throughs in LEGO lighting techniques and the opportunity to deliver the best possible product for everyone from the first time Modular builder, to the Mega-LEGO City Major!

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