Since I acknowledged that I’ll never have room for the largest LEGO set ever, I set my sights slightly smaller — on the second-largest LEGO set ever. I also thought this dream was unattainable, even though it was my number one wish-list item for the 2018 holiday/birthday season.
Even though my birthday is 6 days after Christmas, my husband is well aware that he is not allowed to combine gifts. But I made an exception this year, when he approved my purchase of my dream LEGO set!
Hogwarts Castle (71403) — 6,020 pieces
I built this set between Christmas and New Year’s Day of 2018/2019, and not a moment of it was ever boring. The architectural details and moments from the books were amazing, and I’m obsessed with the stained glass elements. This set came with not one, but FOUR instruction booklets (and a whopping 37 bags of pieces), so I’ll show the build off by sections.
The first section consisted of the base of the Great Hall and main tower. It features the Chamber of Secrets (with bonus basilisk!), the secret basement entrance, and the boat house. (Note the kitties who photo-bombed the background of this particular photo shoot.)
One of the interesting elements of this set is that the base is not all LEGO. It’s actually mostly hollow, but includes large landscape attachments that were individualized with smaller pieces. Part of me feels like this is a cop-out, but the other part of me that had to move it around appreciated how it made the set much, much lighter.
And this set got big, fast:
But the inside is stunning, featuring moving staircases, the prefects bathroom, and Dumbledore’s office!
Then it was off to the second half of the build.
The second base section also featured lots of landscape detail, along with the Potions classroom and Room of Requirement (can you spot the Vanishing Cabinet and Goblet of Fire?).
Solve the challenges of Devil’s Snare, the winged keys, and giant wizard’s chess, then confront the Mirror of Erised.
Whew! One instruction book left.
By this point, I’d watched a season of The Great British Baking Show, the movie Sing, all of the available episodes of The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, and started on season one of Lucifer. Was I bored yet? Absolutely not.
This section features the library, Gryffindor common room, Umbridge’s VERY pink office, and the Defense Against the Dark Arts classroom. If it wasn’t for the picture of the Pink Lady, I’d definitely be sourcing blue bricks to make it a Ravenclaw common room instead.
Altogether, you get this beast:
You’d think that’d be it, right? That’s already a lot of pieces.
You’d be wrong. This set also includes five boats for the first-years to cross the lake, the Whomping Willow, Hagrid’s hut, and minifigs of the founders!
And don’t miss the dragon circling the main tower (see top of post)!
You might be wondering where I’m going to put this set in my LEGO/guest room. That’s the wrong question. The correct question is where I’m going to put my Saturn V set as it’s demoted from the top of the dresser…