Price: £19.99 / $24.99 / €24.99 Pieces: 246 Available: Now
Street vendors used to be few and far between in LEGO sets. Add that to the list of norms that LEGO Friends has changed. Along with the now substantial list of restaurants and juice bars the theme has produced, mobile eateries have come on strong in a big way. Last year it was a hot dog van, now 41319 Snow Resort Hot Chocolate Van offers a steaming mocha to warm the palate of the group of girls. To add a bit of winter sports flare, a small toboggan run is also included for blink-and-you-will-miss-them races.
One of the aspects of LEGO Friends that I have appreciated from the very first wave is the theme’s consistent creation of complete worlds. While the flagship sets will define much of the tone for a wave, they are always complimented by logical, smaller ancillary sets that flesh out the theme. 41319 Snow Resort Hot Chocolate Van is such an offering.
Despite filling the support roll, designers have a done a great job packing a lot into such a small package. The van itself opens in a manner similar to camper sets, allowing easy inside play. It is stocked, as we have come to expect from sets this size, but familiarity in no way decreases its delights. I appreciate the attention to detail that shows itself in features like the sliding glass window on the van. In the cold climate where the poor girl running this van works, the ability to seal off the frigid outside world is paramount. The sliding technique is normally reserved for the entrances to buildings so seeing it shrunk to this scale is a delight.
Ironically, this small set corrects the mistake made on the much larger 41324 Snow Resort Ski Lift set – fans can actually pit their LEGO Friends against one another in a race, albeit a short one. The new segmented slide pieces are repurposed here as toboggan runs with two sleds very reminiscent of Advent Calendar models. While too short for real racing the intent is none the less appreciated, and the sled runs make the whole set feel more complete.
Two mini-dolls are included, both of which sport new outfits. My daughters were delighted to add some cold weather legs and torsos to their collection as most of the LEGO Friends outfits are decidedly more warm weather fare. A small table for eating rounds out this set.
Overall this is a great little set. The price is right, the play options are well rounded and the namesake van is excellent. Even without some of the larger sets from this theme, 41319 is bursting with possibilities for play – tall praise for a support set. It would fit right at home in any LEGO Friends layout and, with a few colour modifications, a CITY layout too.
This product was provided for review by the LEGO Group.