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The most iconic Disney castle of them all is back in the LEGO line-up, once again the largest set in the theme packed with fairy tale inspiration. 41154 Cinderella’s Dream Castle offers an opportunity for fans to live out the titular character’s happy ever after, complete with woodland animals.
Back when the original lineup of Disney Princess sets was released I reviewed the original Cinderella’s Castle release, 41055. Back then I commented that it was a solid playset but had a very dark undertone due to including features such as the attic where Cinderella is locked up, and Lucifer the cat. Gone are those reminders of her miserable past life, with this latest offering taking a page less from the movie and more from the breathtaking 71040 Disney Castle. Like its predecessor, 41154 Cinderella’s Dream Castle has a lot to offer, includes some very usable parts, and overall hits all the notes it needs to. The end result is a set with no surprises either delightful or disappointing; what you see is exactly what you get, for good or ill.
With hundreds of sets across the Friends, Elves, and Disney Princess lines under their belts, some hits and misses along the way, and what we can only imagine are binders full of sales data, the LEGO design team pretty much got the formula for this type of set figured out. Before even cracking it open I made some predictions. The castle would include a bathroom, makeup stand, bedroom, eating area or kitchen and at least two cute animals. Four out of five correct is not bad. Formulas are not a bad thing within the LEGO portfolio, many themes benefit by continually churning out more of what works in order to hook new children who have just come of age. Disney is intended as a gateway theme that hooks kids, hoping to lead them into Elves or the cash cow that is Friends.
To that end, 41154 Cinderella’s Dream Castle is pretty by the numbers for those of us who own a lot of the previous large house type structures that have spread across the mini-doll centered themes. They tend to include many rooms for domestic style pursuits and makeup application. In this set, the various things that Disney presents royalty as doing fill all three floors. As always, they are well executed with some great parts thrown in. Half cylinder parts, previously found in 41067 Belle’s Enchanted Castle, appear again here – but thankfully this castle is actually decent and the light purple makes for a sharp but pleasant departure from its predecessor. My daughters found all of the features they love in past sets from Friends, Elves and Disney Princesses to be present here. Accordingly their reaction was tepid, not because they thought it was bad but because they had seen most of it before in one form or another.
This is not exclusively a re-skinned structure that re-arranges rooms all seen previously. Unlike any of its predecessors, 41154 Cinderella’s Dream Castle actually makes an effort to be a proper centre of power for reigning over a kingdom – for the first time, a throne intended for good guys is included in a Disney Princess set. Located at the top of the spire, a disgruntled peasant with a crossbow could stop line of succession easily, but an actual throne is nonetheless a nice inclusion.
Like all of the LEGO Disney sets released in 2018, the entire design is modular. Thanks to being the largest set, 41154 contains the most re-arranging options and can indeed be configured in multiple different ways. Furthermore, it serves as the anchor of the super castle that can be assembled when multiples of this year’s sets are collected.
Anyone who reads my reviews knows that I am not a big fan of ancillary, disconnected builds; that was my main criticism of this set’s predecessor as it had five. While certainly devoid of them completely as it contains two, that is nonetheless a blessed decrease. Cinderella and her carriage are inseparable in the Disney world and an attempt at what amounts to an enchanted chariot is included. Perhaps it is supposed to be the larger version in mid transformation? The second model’s purpose still eludes me. Mouse bridge? Hitching post for the pony? Barbecue spit waiting for a hog to roast? If you know what it is – or have any better ideas – please share in the comments below.
41154 is largely by the numbers, closely sticking the formula that works for large mini-doll dwellings. As the saying goes, if it ain’t broke don’t fix it. In light of that, those who do not have previous versions of this set, or are looking to build the super castle in combination with 41152 Sleeping Beauty’s Castle, will find this set to be utterly satisfying. It is solid as both a display piece and playset. If you or your children own previous versions of Cinderella’s pad, then this does not offer much in the way of an upgrade.
This product was provided for review by the LEGO Group.