There is no doubt that LEGO comes in all different shapes and sizes these days with the different models and kits that can be created but it is also important to remember that there are different difficultly levels too – not all sets can be thrown together in half and hour and broken up for reuse the next day. The LEGO Creator Expert sets take model building to a different level, to give keen collectors a bigger challenge with more bricks which. The effort put into these builds is always rewarded with expansive scenes and highly detailed replicas and there are plenty of subjects to choose from. The following guide will look at some of the best buildings, landmarks, vehicles and fairground rides to highlight the depth and potential of these expert models.
UPDATE OCT 2016 – New 2016 Creator Expert LEGO Set
LEGO Creator Expert Assembly Square 10255 Set – 1 January 2017 Release
The LEGO Creator Expert range has been enthralling fans and collectors for a long time now. The beauty of these modular builds is the way they highlight the 3D nature of the LEGO build and the possibilities for game play within. There is also the fact that they can slot in with other models – like the Pet Store and Detective’s Office – in many combinations. The LEGO Creator Expert Assembly Square 10255 Set is no different as it provides three new buildings with detailed facades and great interior details across the eight distinct rooms. It is another fun street scene to extend a current collection.
The difference with Assembly Square is that the designers have gone a little further to make this 16+ model a little more special. This 2017 release is the grand central point of the Creator Expert town and there is a little more shine on the paving, some extra details in the brick work and awnings and lots of colors, shapes, accessories and people. The build includes a bakery, florist, cafe, music store, photo studio, dental office, dance studio and an apartment. Each level has a related mini-figure and plenty of accessories to add to the storytelling. Players can spend ages perfecting the brand-new dental office alone!
LEGO Creator Winter Holiday Train 10254 Set
The LEGO Creator Winter Holiday Train 10254 Set is a Christmas gift that keeps on giving because there are so many different elements that add to the story. The train engine connects with a coal tender, flatbed wagon and caboose for a more interesting journey. The details on these elements are impressive, with wreaths and lights on the sides and a brick built smoke stack. The carriage is ready for the three passengers that are waiting on the platform and has a detailed interior. A grandmother and her two grandchildren are greeted by a friendly driver and ticket collector. If they kids are good, they may get one of the presents on the flatbed wagon. These presents include a toy car, spaceship, boat and robot. Other details include a bench, lamppost and holiday tree.
If that wasn’t enough, this LEGO Creator Expert set acts as a working Christmas decoration, rather than just a static toy. There are 16 pieces of curved track in this 700 piece set and the train can be hooked up to pre-existing LEGO power functions elements to motorize it. Families can set up the track, load up the wagon and send the train around the tree on many deliveries over the holiday season.
LEGO Volkswagen Beetle 10252 Set
There are many vehicles in the LEGO Creator Expert range and the LEGO Volkswagen Beetle 10252 Set is a great new addition for 2016. There are 1000 pieces here and they have to be assembled perfectly in order to get these moving parts to work and to create that iconic shape. The curved hood and truck need to lift up to reveal the engine and spare tyre, the seats need to tilt in order to reveal the storage compartment for the beach towel and all the lights and fixtures need to be in the perfect place.
This attention to detail means that builders need a patient eye in order to perfect this creation, but the finished product is highly rewarding for any user that wants to show this off as part of their collection. The shape is instantly recognizable, the colors are eye-catching and the accessories provide a greater sense of purpose than other static models.
Brick Bank 10251 LEGO Set
The Brick Bank is a striking new addition to the LEGO Creator range for 2016 because there are so many unique elements to the design. Aimed at the 16+ age group, there are more than 2380 interesting pieces to the classic exterior and detailed interior, including the detailed paving of the sidewalk and the patterned windows with the flower boxes, so this is definitely one for the collectors who love to take their time.
On the inside of the bank there is also plenty for kids to play with due to the variety of the rooms, the range of accessories and the five minifigures. The manager can head to the bank vault to check on the safe deposit boxes or sit in the leather-look chair in his office to stamp checks. Elsewhere, the secretary has a typewriter, filing cabinet and espresso machine and the mother and child can make a deposit with the bank teller before heading to the laundromat next door.
LEGO Creator Expert Big Ben Set 10253
LEGO Creator Expert sets have always brought an extra challenge to the table and provided experienced builders with something new to consider – the new LEGO Creator Expert 10253 Big Ben for 2016 is no different. This is not the first iconic landmark to be found in the range, nor the only London themed set, but it is more detailed and demanding.
The set contains 4163 bricks of different shapes and styles to create a detailed model of Westminster Palace and Elizabeth Tower. There are tiny gold ski poles, delicate hands for the four clock faces, tinted windows and hundreds of bricks to build the tower up to its full 60cm height. There are also different layers to consider, with the internal mechanism and bell and the external street and base plates. This new Expert set compliments the existing landmarks nicely and shows what can be achieved with some clever designs.
Key Landmarks and Buildings in LEGO Creator Expert Sets
LEGO Pet Shop 10218 Set
The LEGO Creator Pet Shop is another Expert model set that works on a modular level to enhance the collection, or street, that builders have already crafted. The set is named after the first of the two buildings, the Pet Shop, where animal lovers can find new pets to take home. The kit includes a dog, cat, goldfish and parrots and there are plenty of toys and food to keep them happy.
One of these animals could find a home with the young girl pulling up outside on her bicycle or perhaps with the woman that lives in the apartment upstairs. This apartment may be small, with a basic kitchenette and loft space, but there is a fireplace, coffee maker and skylight. The townhouse next door, meanwhile, has a few more creature comforts, such as the telephone, mailbox and hat rack, and the painter outside is giving it a touch up.
LEGO Creator Expert Detective’s Office 10246 Set
One of the best thing about the LEGO Creator Expert sets is the way that older kids can build elaborate sets and play out big scenes and the beauty of the LEGO Creator Expert Detectives Office set is that they can pretty much stage their own LEGO-themed detective show with their mini-figures. Rather than provide players with just an office and the related decor, as the name suggests, this set provides the office, with the accompanying bathroom and kitchen, as well as a pool hall and barbershop.
This offers the perfect place for detective work, stakeouts and interrogations and the details of the sets really add to the opportunities. The office has a desk, a safe for all the clues and even a wanted poster while the pool hall has everything needed for a game of pool (or a bar fight) and the barbershop has a chair, mirror and even a couple of mannequin heads.
LEGO Creator Expert 10243 Parisian Restaurant Set
By comparison, the Parisian Restaurant Expert Creator LEGO set doesn’t seem quite so expansive in terms of the scenes and stories that can be created because it initially looks like it is just one building; however, there is more to this set than a nice place for mini figures to dine out in the evening.
The bottom floor of this elaborate French building looks like a top restaurant, complete with chef, waiter and couple having a romantic meal – although the rat in the kitchen tells a slightly different story. On the top floor, which can be reached by the stairs on the side, there is an apartment and artist studio where a young girl paints what she sees from her balcony – thanks to the included easel and paintbrush – and sleeps on a pull-down bed. This is a kit of two sides and should prove to be inspiring for players 16+.
LEGO Creator 10232 Palace Cinema Set
Sets like the restaurant are a great way of adding new buildings and situations to a town for new scenes to set up and there is another set along this line that would fit in quite nicely for a little more nightlife – the LEGO Creator Palace Cinema set. The design of this building takes buyers back to a different age because of the quality of the architecture, the classic signs that adorn the entrance and the facilities within and there are plenty of details in the bricks and the accessories to amuse collectors.
The six included minifigures can buy their tickets, choose their refreshments at the concessions stand and find a reclining seat in front of the big screen. To make things even more exciting, it looks as though it is a premiere screening because a limousine is outside and its occupants are ready to walk the star-studded sidewalk to meet their fans.
LEGO Creator Grand Emporium 10211 Set
Many of the shops available in the LEGO Creator range are one storey models with apartments that fit into the modular theme. With the LEGO Expert Grand Emporium set, however, there is so much more to build and explore. This department store covers three different storeys in order to accommodate all of the different departments and there is an impressive level of detail to the exterior and the street outside, such as the flags and sign.
Mini figures are streaming in and out of the revolving door, to hunt for bargains and return home with their shopping, and have to dodge the ice cream vendor and the man washing the windows. The ground floor contains the clothing store, with the goods, fitting room and cash register, and then shoppers can head up the escalator to the first floor for homeware or the toy store on the top floor.
LEGO Creator Expert Sydney Opera House 10234 Set
In addition to the buildings that can be added to a growing town of Expert Creator sets there are also the models of famous landmarks – the Expert LEGO Creator Sydney Opera House set may not quite fit next to that Parisian Restaurant but it might in some re-imaginings of the world. This Expert Opera House set gives builders the chance to create a detailed replica of this iconic structure with impressive realism thanks to the use of new forms and techniques for the angles and shapes.
The result is a set that not only looks impressive on completion but is a must-have for buyers that are after rare, exclusive kits. It may take some skill and patience to complete this kit but, with the detail of the building and the addition of external elements like the forecourt and blue water base, this set is bound to look great on display.
LEGO Tower Bridge 10214 Set
Another iconic structure available in LEGO brick form that will test many keen builders is the LEGO Tower Bridge set. While some sets are mainly for display purposes and that sense of achievement, there is the option to play with this set as well as display it which broadens its appeal.
This is a great choice for Anglophiles because not only is the structure of the famous bridge replicated to a high standard in the choice of colors and bricks and the fine detail on the tower and walkways, this a working model that comes with four vehicles to drive along the road. The use of the black taxi and red double decker bus are nice touches and help to bring this 4295 piece set to life a little more but the best element for most players has to be the way that the drawbridge actually opens and closes.
LEGO Creator Fire Brigade & Station 10197 Set
Fire themed kits are nothing new for LEGO – there are certainly plenty of them over in LEGO City – but the Expert Fire Brigade building set in the Creator range provides something a bit different. This detailed kit provides a different approach to the architecture and design for a more interesting, attractive look and the 2231 pieces mean that it is more of a challenge.
The 1930’s look is clear from the date carved into the stonework, the bell tower and the use of dark red and tan bricks and this continues with the style of the fire engine and the sliding door on the garage. Players can take their time on the exterior but the interior is just as important. The roof opens to reveal 2 floors of rooms where the 4 mini-figures and fire-dog can work, rest and play. There are plenty of tools and helmets but also a kitchen and ping-pong table.
LEGO Creator 10224 Town Hall Set
Every town needs a grand, functional place for its citizens to meet and discuss the town’s development and that is precisely what buyers can achieve with the LEGO Creator Expert Town Hall building set. This impressive three-storey building has plenty of space for meetings and conferences, a tax office, offices for the major and his secretary and a large auditorium on the ground floor.
There are practical elements, such as the working elevator and the desks and chairs, but there are plenty of features designed for showing off too. The inside of the building has paintings and a sculpture but the outside has a coat of arms, grand columns on the entranceway, a bell tower and balcony for public speeches. There is plenty to build but the use of minifigures means there are stories to tell as well. A press women is there to find a juicy story and a couple are even getting married!
Festive LEGO Creator Expert Sets
LEGO Creator Expert Winter Village Cottage 10229 Set
Some sets, like the Detectives Office set can be built and enjoyed at any time of year but there are others that are a little more seasonal and can make great temporary decorations during a festive period. A great example of this is the LEGO Creator Expert Winter Village Cottage set.
It’s the ideal way to bring a winter scene to life with LEGO bricks because of the range of features that make up this snowy retreat and the amount of mini-figures that come with it. The cottage itself is bright and colorful with its snow covered roof and decorative wreaths and is the ideal home for the family of 7 and the visiting snowplow driver with its furniture, appliances, glowing fireplace and Christmas tree. In addition to this there is the storage shed for logs for the fire, other decorations, a sled and even an owl and cat!
LEGO Creator 10249 Winter Toy Shop Set
On a similar note to the Winter Village set is the LEGO Creator Winter Toy Shop, which again offers a highly decorative and aesthetically pleasing set that will look great in a Christmas village, perhaps as the ideal place for the family in the lodge to get their presents. The star of the set should be the detailed shop with the decoration on the awning and inviting interior but once again there is a lot of consideration for the exterior and the streets around the store.
The set also comes with a decorated Christmas tree, that almost reaches as high as the shop, and there is also a bench, streetlight, snowman and a cat. In addition to this there are eight different minifigures to play their roles in the snowy scene, including people to run the store, kids to buy the toys and carolers to spread good cheer by the tree.
LEGO Creator Expert 10245 Santa’s Workshop Set
Alternatively, there is the LEGO Creator Expert Santa’s Workshop set, which brings a delightful scene of Lapland to the living room with great builds, key accessories and charming mini figures. The building, complete with Santa and a selection of toys and presents, is ideally suited to the occasion with its decorations and snowy roofs but once again it is the scene taking place outside that really makes this set so appealing to both the kids building it and the adults admiring it.
There is a brilliantly crafted sleigh parked outside near the North Pole sign, ready to take Santa and his toys off to all the good children, and it is being pulled for four reindeer. If that was not enough, there is also a baby reindeer, a few elves and Mrs Claus to see them off and make sure that all are well fed for the journey ahead.
LEGO Creator Holiday Bakery 10216 Set
There are many different festive sets in the LEGO expert range that give creative builders the chance to make buildings and Christmas scenes that are not possible with some of the more simplistic models. The main build here is the bakery stand where the server can sell a range of tasty treats for locals and skaters on cold winter mornings. It is pretty treacherous out there so they need a nice pastry to soothe the bumps and bruises.
There are baguettes and croissants served up on blue plates to match the blue tiles and there is also a light up brick for the interior for those darker evenings. Additionally, there a horse and cart arriving outside to bring deliveries from the town and other accessories like the seven mini-figures, a snowy owl watching on from is perch and snow piles to place beside the frozen pond and cushion the skaters’ fall.
Lego Creator Expert Vehicles
Lego Creator Expert 10248 Ferrari F40 Set
Vehicles are always popular choices with LEGO collectors, especially those that are keen drivers and wish to a have a good replica of a car on their shelves, if they cannot have the real thing. The LEGO Creator Ferrari F40 model set is a great place to start when discussing this little sub-category because it really does bring the finer details of the car in LEGO form.
The use of small, carefully made bricks means that the form of this car can be replicated with relative ease – even if it is an expert set – and all the necessary moving parts are there, from the opening doors to the hood and truck that lift off to reveal the storage space and V8 engine. In addition to all these striking red bricks there are the tires, windshield, steering wheel and seat to make it roadworthy and the all-important Ferrari logo.
LEGO Creator Expert- 10242 MINI Cooper
Another car in the expert line of LEGO sets is one that provides the same level of recognition and accuracy in a highly recognizable model – the LEGO Creator MINI Cooper set. Much like the Ferrari, the key selling point for collectors is the way that the bricks have been molded and the colors chosen so that the finished car, with its small wheels and trademark boxy shape, looks the part on the shelf.
This MINI Cooper Mk VII comes in a classic green and white color scheme with racing stripes and has lots of appealing fine details in the little wing mirrors, fog lights and movable parts. What makes this set slightly different, however, is that it comes with some accessories to dress up the model on the shelf and add another dimension. The picnic basket and blanket give the sense that this MINI is off on a Sunday drive in the English countryside.
LEGO Creator Sopwith Camel Set
There are lots of different trains and automobiles in the LEGO Creator Expert range and with the LEGO Sopwith camel set, builders can add a great old-fashioned plane to their collection. This plane has a wingspan of over 12 inches and there are a lot of fine details to enjoy, from the scaffolding between the bi-wings to the work on the tails and the landing gear.
The design is as true to the Sopwith Camel as possible, with the stripes on the fin and the targets on the wings, and this continues in the use of unusual LEGO elements like the dark tans bricks and metallic silver. Like some of the best Creator vehicles, this plane has moving parts to enhance the opportunities for creative play. The propellers turn to rotate the cylinders and the wing ailerons and tail flaps can be manoeuvred via the cockpit.
LEGO Creator Maersk Train 10219 Set
The LEGO Expert range doesn’t just give builders the chance to make great vehicles, it offers great replications of impressive, well-known models. The LEGO Creator Maersk Train set promises to be highly realistic in its design and construction so that model train enthusiasts can proudly put it on display. The engine is more than just a pretty blue shell because the driver’s cab can be opened for play and the side panel can be removed to show the 16-cylinder engine within.
This train is pulling two wagons, which can be loaded up with containers, including the refrigeration unit, via the shunter truck and detachable trailer. Luckily, there are also three workmen mini-figures on hand to operate all the machinery and get the train set up safely. With all of these parts and the ability to add LEGO power functions, this set is much more than a static model. Note – The motor and tracks are not included with the set.
LEGO Creator Expert 10220 Volkswagen T1 Camper Van
With some of the recreations of cars, the most important thing for the designers to get right is the look and shape so that fans can be sure of the perfect clone in LEGO brick form on their shelf or desk; with others, like the LEGO Creator Expert Volkswagen T1 Camper Van, it is the character of the vehicles and its history that shines through the most.
The instantly recognizable shape and color scheme is definitely there with this red and white model, which measures at 11.8 inches long with 1322 pieces, and the details of the windows and mirrors will please collectors. It is the story inside that will really engage builders, however, as there is the sense that this van has gone back to its hippie roots. The curtains and fold-out bed show that somebody is living here and the shirt reading “make LEGO models, not war” tells us why.
LEGO Creator Expert Fairground Rides
LEGO Creator Expert 10247 Ferris Wheel Set
These Expert kits in the LEGO Creator 16+ range really do come in all shapes and sizes to provide new challenges, bigger collections and fun scenes. A final example of this is seen in two of the fairground related sets that have been created. The first is the LEGO Creator Expert Ferris Wheel set that gives avid builders 2464 multicolored piece in order to build a large working model of the fairground’s star ride.
The key selling point with this model is the fact that it can be motorized if buyers have an 8883 motor and 88000 AAA battery box – turn the crank and watch it spin. When completed, this 23 inch high model looks pretty impressive and the size means that there is plenty of room below for accessories. This model already comes with stands for buying ice cream, pretzels and balloons but there are other sets that can accompany the wheel for a big fairground scene.
LEGO Creator Expert 10244 Fairground Mixer
The final set in this list is the LEGO Creator Expert Fairground Mixer – another cool looking ride with the potential to be powered up and let go if builders own the appropriate parts. This alternative ride is the star piece in this set as it provide a complex build with multiple elements, over 1700 pieces and even some cool glow in the dark pats that add to the sense of night time fun.
The ride, with its different cars, safety barrier and ticket booth is the centerpiece but there are lots of additional elements for mini-figures to interact with that build up the scene, including the two transport trucks to take this folding model out on the road, high striker and dunk tank sideshows, prizes to win and people to win them. Suitable for anyone 16 years and older, players can choose their role between ride operator, truck driver and customer and have a lot of fun with this detailed set.