If Phuket in Thailand tickles your fancy and you’ve got some money to burn, perhaps Villa Amanzi is just the place to rent for your holiday.
This spectacular model of the villa was built by Robert Turner (rt_bricks). It’s roughly half minifig scale, but still measures a respectable 96 studs x 64 studs x 61 bricks and has a detailed interior. The house is fantastic, but I particularly like the rock face and the tropical foliage above it. Robert’s description sounds as though it could be from a holiday brochure: “It features a 15 metre infinity pool overlooking the Andaman Sea, 6 bedrooms, and a contemporary modern design nestled into the edge of a ravine and up against an impressive rock face that penetrates into the house on multiple floors”
Rack Huang from the Taiwan LUG known as Pockyland designed a calendar for 2014 featuring works by Lego fans from Taiwan. You can see these creations in detail from the Pockyland forums. Leave a comment about your favorite month from this calendar and we’ll pick a random winner in a week who will receive a printed copy of the calendar!
Spencer Rezkalla (Spencer R) is a master of micro-scale skyscrapers, and his models have been featured on TBB many times. That does not stop me from calling your attention to his latest project, however. The US may be known for cities full of skyscrapers, such as Chicago and New York, but nowadays most such buildings are being constructed in Asia and Spencer has now turned his attention to China, building the Shanghai World Financial Center and the Jin Mao Tower.
The subtle curve and the way the façades intersect on the Shanghai Financial Tower is particularly noteworthy. A third skyscraper, called the Shanghai Tower, is currently under construction next to these two and is due for completion in 2014. As you can see from the picture above, Spencer has already saved a spot for it.
I’m not completely sure what’s going on with fvin&yan’s latest effort, but the unfortunate fellow with the dapper hat is about to get a knife to the face! This model is simply stunning from top to bottom and features a pleasingly wide range of color. Perhaps one of our readers can help with the translation of the title and very brief accompanying text, the best I was able to come up with was “Poor included bei, also from Emperor Jing Ke Thorn”.
During my recent trip to Taiwan, I came across a new line of micro brick construction toys called TICO. It appears to be a Taiwan made clone brand of the Japanese brand Nanoblock at only half the price. I bought a set, #3010 Battle Robot (RxB) for NT$180, which comes out to a little more than $6 US for around 80 pieces.
The elements are very tiny and are rather difficult to handle, requiring a great deal of fine motor control. The instructions are straight forward, however, they use a technique of hi-lighting the pieces used in the current step by showing the pieces a shade lighter. This is a problem when the set includes 2 shades of grey, creating confusion as to which shade of grey is needed at which step. Secondly, the elements have no way of locking the studs of a connecting element on the long axis of an element, allowing the element on the underside to slide around. This creates a lot of play in the construction, making it somewhat difficult to line pieces up correctly.
The final model is very loose and fragile as it has many one stud connections. The overall construction is less the sturdy, lacking in overlapping elements to lock things in place. If micro bricks are your thing, TICO Mini Bricks are an affordable alternative to the pricier Nanoblock. According to their website, TICO appears to have licensed sets for Totoro, Angry Birds and One Piece, which are all very popular in Taiwan.
Gabriel Thompson (qi_tah) is really building amazing stuff these days. Here is another one of his creations – oriental Teahouse. I admire classic asian architecture, and just love the colors and details on this one.