May 16, 2021

Review: 41693 Surfer Beachfront


Arriving at her Grandma's Beachfront property, Mia looks to park as Andrea and Nora wave ~~ speaking of waves ... Look at this Surfer paradise!



Mia gives her Grandma Nora a hug!


We get busy building the Beach Buggy, which is somewhat jeep-like. Its overall boxy shape is softened by the newly recolored 2x2x1-1/3 brick with bow (corners) in azure on the front, which is only the 3rd color for this 2020 part.
The vehicle is very sturdy with a 3-plate stacked under-carriage with traditional plates with pin for attaching wheel hubs. It's all vertical construction until the front hood, which is built separately and attached.


Mia drove out today with her pug dog Toffee, who has been her pet since her 2017 Beach Scooter set (41306). She has worn this outfit several times since the 2018 Friendship Bus.


Mia's vehicle is a fun build and I think the LEGO 4+ team could look at this rather than the chunk of a car chassis piece used now.

This seats four mini-dolls! Plus room for a crate of beach gear.
I wasn't sure about it on the box art -- yet in person I really like its size and heft, which is more realistic than some other LEGO vehicles.


Andrea arrives wearing a Teal and magenta geometric design halter top; it's the same top as her Car and Stage set 41390, yet paired with a magenta skirt and double-strap navy sandals.


The Ice Cream Shop module is built next. You can see the 3-holed-white bricks on the side, which means we will connect this to other modules for a Modular aspect.
The awning is built separately then attached. The Light pink 1/2 circle 1x1 tiles used as the awning scalloped overhang are new for 2021 and rare; the Aqua 1/2 circle 1x1 tiles are also new for 2021 and otherwise only in DOTS.

I really like the white oval tile designed for the storybooks as a tabletop!


On to bag 3 parts, we get a rare 6x12 Teal plate to build-upon for a rooftop DJ station, table, chairs, and loud speaker. Since the shop's walls are topped with smooth tiles and only a few studs -- we can easily attach and remove for interior access.


We then build the Ice Cream Shop interior cabinets. The newer printed register brick goes on top of a small frig with grapes (or purple ice cream), a waffle on a griddle, strawberry toppings jar, whipped cream can, and sink with an ice cream cone holder -- plus we put a spoon scoop in the top pink drawer -- then install into the shop.


With everything installed, the shop is full and tasty looking!


Now to build the huge Ice Cream Cone sign with these parts; the larger dome piece is newly recolored in white for 2021 (previously in pink for Toy Story carnival), and the trans magenta opal 2x2 round final piece is rare.


Ice Cream Cone sign is attached -- there's no mistake what this shop sells!
The rooftop gets an umbrella for a sunny and fun place to hang out at the beach. I like all of it -- especially the awning. Plus we get a whopping 17 spares!

This is a wholly independent shop that can be played with or even added to another layout at this point. Getting modular for this set is very exciting.


Ava is one of 3 new-for-2021 Friends micro-dolls; she's been in other sets with Mia, and with dark orange hair, is obviously related.


The rest of bag 4 parts build this heart-shaped beach area with lapping waves -- complete with: Lounger, huge Lime drink, Palm shade, near a leaping baby Dolphin, hatching baby Turtle -- and a fresh pearl from a seashell.
The faceted white trans opal 1x1 as the "pearl" was designed by the DOTS team and it still somewhat rare.


The Beachfront resident, Nora, is Mia's Grandma. New in mini-doll form for 2021, she wears Teal reading glasses and has hard plastic long grey hair that is only otherwise in Harry Potter sets. Her white free-flow ruffle lapel cardigan is over a multi-colored (Lavender, Teal) striped seersucker type of fabric blouse. It has rows of ruffles and can be seen on her back printing too.
She wears a purple pearl-like necklace, and a magnifying glass on a chain. The Lavender skirt is the same as the white apron pieces used in previous Friends. Her purple flip-flop sandals finish off her beach-life look.


With bag 5 parts we start to build the Surf shop. A register counter for inside, and a striped awning get built separately then installed.
The dark blue Technic bushing/pin and white pin brick on the side will allow us to connect it to the Ice Cream Shop. So far this is a really fun modular buildings set.


The awning is a bit different design than the Ice Cream Shop, so it blends in along the strand -- yet stands out. The smooth tiled wall tops indicate the roof section can come off for access.


We get more newly recolored for 2021 Aqua panels in bag 6, another rare 6x12 Teal plate (only in Lighthouse Rescue Center), plus also rare Teal 3x3 plate 1/4 circle with cutout (otherwise only in Vet Ambulance).

With these we build Nora's apartment for above the Surf Shop. It's similar to the other modules, as we build a few furniture items to install inside, and the architectural detailed section -- which is really lovely.

The new 3x3 curved plates (from 2020 in only a few other colors) in Teal work really well for the Balcony!


Inside the stove with pretzel in the oven, Teapot, teacup, pans, swivel chair, table with vase, magenta purse/bag, and Futon get installed.
Sticker #10 with utensils and a photo of seems to be Nora and baby Mia goes on the left wall, and #9 shelf/decorative items goes above the sofa/futon.


Surfboard sign, boards and paddles rack, sunglasses and flipper stand, recycle sign, and trash can with fish are built using bag 7 parts.
Instructions have us install to the existing modules as we build each item -- yet I want to get photos of the modules separately. So I'm showing these in detail here.


Surf shop items installed inside.


The rest of the bag's parts give us flora swags to build and plant on module sides; plus another rare 6x12 Teal plate to build the roof section. On top we build a garden with a super cute Watering Can! It uses a rare newly-recolored-in-2020 in black (formerly clear) 3.2 shaft with knob as the handle. Also newly recolored in grey, the handle piece (id 6326748) is used for a spout, which previously came only in transparent clear. We've used them as drink straws, as seen on the huge Lime drink by the beach.

We'll attach the Watering Can to the rooftop before we attach to Nora's apartment roof. (Note the carrot is per instructions, yet does not really fit or stay in the basket; be careful not to lose it.)

Spare parts are plenty here; I took a look back to see if I missed this additional white paddle -- yet it seems it's an extra -- which is a large part for spare, yet useful for play.


Here's a look at all the modules before connecting them. This is a great example of a Modular that doesn't have to be that huge overall, like Creator Expert sets, yet provides nice and detailed structures. This set is a good learning step toward those larger sets.


The back/inside view of the modules attached.


The front view will them all attached and beach section added, we have our Surfers Beachfront! Very colorful and inviting.


Since it is a Modular set, I decided to try at least one different arrangement. Nora's apartment was easy to attach above the Ice Cream Shop. For the rooftop table and record player over the surf shop, I did re-arrange a bit.
This could also be on a street near the beach -- I really liked modifying these designs, and could probably do a few more.


The box has nice background art of beach scene, with the standard BFF heart inset, we know this is just outside HLC. The mini-doll cameo circles let us know the names.
Box contents: Seven numbered bags, two 8x16 Lavender plates, wrapped instructions (1 small booklet [with parts list], and 2 larger books), with sticker sheet enclosed.


Sticker sheet has transparent backing.


Box back has lots of activities, such as Andrea using that NPU watering can on the rooftop Garden. Mia's lounging as Andrea gets ready to surf!
I've shown and mentioned new and/or newly recolored parts, yet for a complete list see booklet #1 pdf on the instructions page on the LEGO site.


One last look at the Surfer Beachfront.

Summary:

Yet another beautiful beach set for Friends! Building this sweet pastel and coastal colored Modular set as separate modules is a great way to learn this type of creating. Thinking ahead to their connections, it's fun to see what designs each uses to blend in, yet also be unique.
We've had lots of Ice Cream Shops throughout the years, yet this one manages to be a fresh design. The sign in particular is so much fun!

While the apartment is small, it's typical of such coveted beachfront dwellings. Most time is spent outdoors anyway. Getting to meet Mia's Grandma is another treat to this set.

The small beach section is its own succinct design. The Lounger is a perfect spot to relax with the calming sound of lapping waves. Each time the designers gives us a heart-shaped section, I always smile at their creativity. The surf shop's sign is nice framing of the entire build with useful techniques.

As I mention already about the vehicle, I like it way more than I thought I would. Being able to seat four mini-dolls is sure to make core fans happy.

The modules are easy to handle with secure roofs, yet easy to remove. Re-arranging was very fun for me and I'd love to see more sets like this. I'd recommend this for any LEGO fan, since beach themed buildings are usually in colors like these.


Disclaimer:
This set was provided by The LEGO Group for the purpose of sharing set details with fans.
Opinions provided here solely reflect those of our reviewer.
Photographs are property of FriendsBricks and are not directed by TLG in any fashion.


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3 comments:

Blondwave said...

I would really like to buy this set, it's so lovely with all pastel colours - I adore the summer vibes. It reminds me a small city in Calabria in Italy where I've been a couple of years ago, the design is very realistic. I am glad it includes Nora as an unique minidoll, but also Ava who is just in a few sets that I am not planning to buy. It's great to see a car for 4 people, too.

Unknown said...

wow this set is just awesome! but i do have to see the display before i decide cause if its too small i may not get it

Xyra Silverleaf said...

This is really a cool set! I'm glad you mentioned building the buggy was fun. I recently picked up a 4+ set with a car and was heartily disappointed by the full car already there. Thank you for this great review.

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