Lego fans of all ages will soon be able to step into the new 12,000 square metre 'House of Bricks' - it opens this week and includes both 'public' space as well as paid-for attractions.
The building - designed by Bjark Ingels Group (BIG) - is made up of 21 white blocks made to look like enlarged Lego bricks. The structure is crowned by an oversized 2x4 brick, the so-called Keystone.
Construction started in early 2014 and after having its original opening date pushed back from 2016.
Lego House manager Jesper Vilstrup says: “The building itself reflects what Lego play and the Lego values are all about. The Lego brick has been incorporated into the architecture in a simple, but ingenious way.”
The idea behind the new Lego House in Lego's home town of Billund, Denmark is to encourage children of all ages to learn through the "hands on, minds on" experience and to spread their essential values: imagination, creativity, fun, learning, caring and quality.
These different 'competences' are laid out as physical spaces within Lego house and we'll talk you through them below.
The Tree of Creativity
Height: 15.68 metres
Lego bricks: 6,316,611
Total weight (including metal frame): 20 ton
Production time: 24,350 hours
Installation time: 1200 hours
At the heart of the action is Lego Square, which you can see below. The centrepiece is one of the world’s largest Lego models; a tree, 15 metres high, built from more than six million LEGO bricks. The tree is called ‘Tree of Creativity’.
The model will be located on the ground floor of Lego House, where access is free. If who choose to buy a ticket for the rest of the house will be walking around the tree when ascending the stairs to the next floor.
Vilstrup adds: “We have designed a tree that appeals to young and old alike, whether you appreciate building, art or play themes – the model holds something for everyone."
Elsewhere the building contains a play area, two restaurants, a Lego museum, a store and a place for you to display your creations!
You will not need a ticket to visit Lego Square, play on the terraces, explore the Lego Store or go to one of the eateries.
In addition to a coffee shop, the two places to eat in Lego house are quite different. The first is a family restaurant that combines the dining experience with building - called Mini Chef (no relation of Little Chef).
According to Lego, your meal is created by Lego people. "As a guest, you will build your very own order in LEGO bricks. When you have created your order, you will scan it and send it to the kitchen, where minifigures are working.
"The food will be brought into the restaurant via a conveyer belt – just like when Lego bricks are molded in the factory. Two robots then serve the meal!"
There's also a gourmet restaurant as well, designed for business meetings as well as fancy dining.
A highlight of the building will be an area known as the 'Red Zone' - a place dedicated to creating stuff from bricks. There is a literal pool of Lego (complete with a fountain of the iconic, colourful bricks) which hold unlimited resources to build whatever you want, there will even be someone to help with your builds.
It's hoped Lego House will attract 250,000 visitors per year from across the globe.
You'll also be able to access the very top of Lego house which will stand at 23 meters high meaning fantastic views over Billund though perhaps it won't be a great idea on a rainy day. (Plus, if you've ever been to Billund you'll know that there isn't exactly a lot of high-rise action to see.)
If you're thinking that there's already a Legoland in Billund then, well, you'd be right about that. But when the Lego Group was experiencing leaner times it sold a majority stake in its parks to the Merlin Entertainment Group. Lego House is wholly owned by the Lego Group.
Back to Jesper Vilstrup: “The location of the building is no coincidence. Billund is where the Lego adventure began. It was always our intention that Lego House should be open to tourists as well as Billund’s citizens at large."
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