Inside The LEGO House

Posted by ,
View image at flickr

Last week's LEGO Fan Media days in Billund were held in the LEGO House in the centre of Billund. Apparently, it was the first such use of the building, coming just two weeks after it ceased to be a 'building site' requiring hard hats and protective gear to access it.

After a presentation by Jesper Vilstrup, General Manager of the LEGO House and Stuart Harris, Senior Experience Designer, in which details of the flagship models were revealed for the first time, we were taken on a guided tour to see progress for ourselves.

Many of the installations are taking shape so we were able to get a good impression of what the interior will be like once it's completed. It's still very unfinished, though, and there appears to be a lot of work to do before it officially opens at the end of September. However, Jesper assured me that a lot of people are working on it and it would be completed on time.

View pictures of historical display in the basement, the tree in the staircase and the World Explorer display, and find out what the showcase models in the masterpiece gallery will be, after the break...


The LEGO House, designed by Bjarke Ingels, was unveiled in 2013. It was originally set to open in 2016 but the technical challenges of the pillar-less design have resulted in a year's delay and three times the amount of steel used in the framework.

The building itself is now largely complete although its surroundings are still a very much a building site which is causing much disruption to the centre of Billund.

View image at flickr

This model, one of many at different scales that were in the atrium, shows what it'll look like when finished. If I had positioned my camera on the the front left corner of the table it would have been at the corresponding position to when I took the one above.

View image at flickr

During the tour we ascended to the top, up the side of the orange 'stairs' shown in this picture of another model of the building.

The top has eight 'studs' each with a glass pane. Here Ambrush from Bricks StackExchange, Stuart and Jesper test the strength of one while James from Jedi News looks on.View image at flickr

View image at flickr


The atrium

The reason for the construction delay was to enable the ground floor to be pillar-less, and the result is a huge atrium area which is light and airy. The camera does not do it justice. The floor is constructed from solid wood blocks.

Our meeting room was just about the only part of the building that was complete. View image at flickr

View image at flickr


The basement

The basement houses a museum that tells the story of the company and its products. It was largely complete and we got a good impression of what it'll be like, although not enough time to examine it all closely.

View image at flickr

Here are some of the earliest pieces on display.

View image at flickr

Items from the 1970s...

View image at flickr

...and the 2000s. Someone noted on Twitter where I first posted these photos that the masks on the blue and green Bionicle figures were not right!

View image at flickr

The displays are arranged around the sides of a square area. In the middle there's an inner room, still under construction, that will showcase hundreds of iconic sets, built and displayed with their boxes.


The tree

The centrepiece of the house, and the largest model in it with some 6.3 million pieces, is a tree that rises from the ground floor to the very top. It might sound slightly boring from that description but it's a stunning piece of work full of detail as you will see below.

View image at flickr

Here Andres from zusammengebaut.com takes a picture from the bottom.

View image at flickr

The trunk has LEGO icons and graffiti such as Kjeld 'carved; into it.

View image at flickr

As you descend the stairs and look down you see that on top of many of the branches there are dioramas depicting LEGO's classic themes: City...

Friends...View image at flickr

View image at flickr

Space...

View image at flickr

Apparently LEGO had to resort to buying some of the sets on the secondary market!

View image at flickr

Looking down you can see the exquisite detail of the leaves.

View image at flickr

The top of the tree is finished off with a crane and construction site, signifying that the LEGO story is not over, that the company is still growing and there is more to come.

View image at flickr

It's a stunning model but a devil to keep clean I suspect, and I wonder what effect the UV from the windows above will have on it all...


Brick waterfall

This picture shows how many of the fixtures and fittings are designed to look like they are built out of giant LEGO pieces.

View image at flickr


World Explorer

What could an AFOL build if they had an unlimited number of bricks and time? This huge World Explorer display, apparently!

This minifig scale model is in three clusters, a city and seaport...

View image at flickr

...a mountainous area complete with castle and snow peaks, and a island with beach and funfair, which you'll see below.

View image at flickr

The models will eventually have Perspex panels around them to protect them from little fingers.

View image at flickr
View image at flickr

Virtually every model is illuminated and I suspect it looks stunning in the dark. There's motion, too, but that was not functioning.

View image at flickr

The castle on the hill...

View image at flickr

Cafe Corner takes centre place in the city cluster, one of several 'off the shelf' models in the displays.

View image at flickr

Caves in the mountainside...

View image at flickr

Dock building...

View image at flickr

Here's part of the third cluster depicting a beach and Fabuland funfair. Note the Ferris Wheel which has only been slightly adapted from the original set.

Why is the right side constructed from Duplo? Because walking that way takes you to the Duplo area of the building...

View image at flickr

You'll find more photos, taken by Andres, at Zusammengebaut.


Masterpiece gallery

The keystone 2x4 brick at the top of the building will house a 'masterpiece gallery'. Three huge dinosaurs constructed from each of LEGO's building systems -- Duplo, System and Technic -- will dominate the room while display cases around the edge will show models contributed by AFOLs.

The dinosaurs were publicly revealed for the first time in our meeting. Look carefully and you'll notice they are stepping on a LEGO brick!

Apparently the eggs will hatch at some point.

View image at flickr

A slide from Stuart's presentation showed several models from high-profile AFOLs like Peter Reid and Chris McVeigh (powerpig), who were nominated by their ambassadors to contribute models to the displays.

In future there may well be competitions or other ways to get your models in the building.

View image at flickr

Although there's much work to do, enough had been completed to enable us to get a good impression of what to expect when it opens. Quite simply, it all looks fantastic and worthy of its title of 'Home of the Brick'.

Brickset, and other attendees of the Skaerbaek weekend, will be there just before the official opening in September so expect another report from us then.

26 comments on this article

Gravatar
By in United Kingdom,

That Tree is just awesome. The whole place looks amazing. I really must start saving for a trip!

Gravatar
By in Norway,

I have to go there!

Gravatar
By in United States,

i second the motion

Gravatar
By in United Kingdom,

Looks like a lot of thought has gone into this to make it a really good Lego Experience.
Will be a good excuse for an extra day or so added to an inside tour trip (if or when I actually manage to get on one).

Gravatar
By in United States,

Whoa!

Gravatar
By in Australia,

"After a presentation by Jesper Vilstrup, General Manager of the LEGO House and Stuart Harris, Senior Experience Designer, in which details of the flagship models were revealed for the first time, we were taken on a guided tour to see progress for ourselves."

Flagship models? Now you got my attention! When will you post any news on this?

Gravatar
By in Sweden,

Wow and wow. Going there in June.... :|

Gravatar
By in United Kingdom,

^^ Read the article to the end :)

Gravatar
By in United States,

Wow, very impressive place! Both from an architectural standpoint as well as LEGO enthusiast.

Technically, those masks on Lewa and Gali are not wrong. While they did not come out of box with those sets, Toa could wear different masks to use different abilities, and the colors are correct.

Gravatar
By in United States,

When I was little I buried a piece of Lego in the ground, hoping it would grow a tree like that. After years of patience all I got was a dirty Lego :(

Seriously though I have only three words: Coolest! Thing! Ever!

Gravatar
By in Venezuela,

Anyone ask: How on Earth they are going to keep all the bricks free from dust?

Gravatar
By in United Kingdom,

Really incredible building!

Gravatar
By in United States,

Wow this is crazy. The World Explorer layout is one of the best creations I've ever seen. I want to go now.

Gravatar
By in Germany,

Amazing pictures indeed! Lol regarding the filming crew at the side of the moon landing scene xD

Gravatar
By in United Kingdom,

Brilliant report and a great recap for the first day.

Gravatar
By in United Kingdom,

The world explorer is beautiful, just beautiful, I really hope I can visit just to see it. I just love large-scale city dioramas like that. Mind blown.

Gravatar
By in Venezuela,

My purpose in life is now graduating (Modern Languages) and then finding an opportunity and being my absolute best at it, just so one day I can put even the most minimal physical component of my being in there.

Gravatar
By in United Kingdom,

Great insights, some of which I couldn't see or was unable to experience on my tour and I'm keen to find out about, such as the historic vault and the top of the keystone. We were able to get a very interesting look at the various different play areas in progress, and not only is the brick waterfall in full size a sight to behold, but there are going to be some really innovative ways of interacting with Lego that I think many people, particularly adults (ironically), are going to be excited about!

Just to add to your fantastic photos of the tree - there are some monkeys around the branches - the team liked the Creator Monkey so much, there is at least one on each branch to go with each theme - hence the spacesuit on the space monkey. A nice idea!

Gravatar
By in Canada,

How much to buy the house? I want it! Can I pay it off over a thousand year mortgage? Lol

Gravatar
By in Canada,

This place looks amazing! I'm so happy they have the MT-21 Mobile Mining Unit on the Mars section...

Gravatar
By in United States,

Wow! It was just a big hole in the ground when I was there for EB2014! Can't wait to see that BIG TREE and everything else. Glad they made it without supports inside. This looks like too much fun!

Gravatar
By in Germany,

Nice article and good recap of our days in the LEGO House. I was glad to meet you all there!

Gravatar
By in United States,

Wow, the Lego House sure looks great. I really want to take a trip there someday when I have the money.

Gravatar
By in China,

That is fantastic!

Gravatar
By in United States,

First of all This is a BIG Thing!! I just love it!! It is mind blowing!! Well done LEGO for that!! As I saw in the pictures would be really great if in the future they will start to sell City sets with skyscrapers that have lights on them, like those displayed here. Would be a great thing!!

Btw, do you have any idea how much the ticket is going to be once they open the house for the public?

Thank you!

Return to home page »