Discover the New LEGO 21344 Orient Express: A Review of the Latest LEGO Ideas Set

LEGO, in collaboration with The Orient Express, has officially launched the 21344 The Orient Express set, commemorating the 140th anniversary of this iconic train. This LEGO Ideas creation, the 52nd of its kind, is set to enchant LEGO and train enthusiasts alike from December 1, 2023.

Crafting History with LEGO Bricks

The 2,540-piece set is a marvel of design, capturing the essence of one of the most luxurious and historic modes of transportation. It’s a nod to the rich heritage of the train, though not designed for motorisation due to its substantial weight.

“The Orient Express is the train of dreams with its magnificent carriages created by great craftsmen and designers.”

Film director and LEGO® fan Thomas Lajon

Design and Inspiration

Thomas Lajon, a film director and LEGO enthusiast, initially submitted the design, which led to this set. The final product features a shorter engine and two carriages, all in a striking dark blue colour, adorned with warm gold accents. This set is not just a toy but a collector’s item, reflecting the grandeur of its real-life counterpart.

Historical and Cultural Significance

Historically, the Orient Express symbolises luxury travel from Paris to Istanbul, blending engineering marvels and cultural legacy. While the train’s name might raise questions about sensitivity to the diverse cultures of Asia, it remains a historically accurate reference to this specific institution. LEGO’s set respects this history while acknowledging the contemporary perspectives on cultural representation.

What’s in the Box?

  • Dimensions: 57.8 × 37.5 × 11.3 cm
  • Total Pieces: 2540
  • Price: US$299.99 / AU$469.99
  • Weight: 2337.4 g
  • Price per Piece: $0.118
  • Numbered Bags/Stages: 23
  • Average Pieces per Stage: 110
  • Manufacturing Details: Packaged in Kladno, Czech Republic

The Set in Detail

The set stands out with its detailed steam locomotive and luxurious carriages. It has eight character minifigures, adding to the play and display value. However, its non-motorised design and historical background might limit its appeal to a niche audience.

The Verdict: A Superior Building Experience

LEGO’s 21344 The Orient Express blends intricate design and historical homage. While its price and design cater to a specific group of LEGO collectors and history enthusiasts, its launch is a significant event in the LEGO Ideas series. This set will become a centrepiece in any collection, representing a unique intersection of history, culture, and LEGO creativity.

Available exclusively from LEGO.com and LEGO stores starting December 1, 2023, the LEGO Orient Express is more than a model; it’s a journey through time and imagination.

Compared to other sets like the #10326 Natural History Museum, the Orient Express offers a more satisfying build experience, making it the preferred choice for adult LEGO enthusiasts. Its release alongside another $300 set targets a similar audience, but the Orient Express edges out as the more appealing option for its unique blend of historical elegance and building enjoyment.

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