With three girls in our house, we are quite inundated with all things Barbie, as you might expect. Both Hannah and Becca have been playing with them for several years, and even Abbi (who has never really played much with toys) counts a few Barbies among her possessions. But although we’ve got plenty of dolls, many Barbie pets, accessories and even a few stray pieces of furniture, we’ve never had a full play set for the girls to use with them. So when I had the chance to review the Barbie Build ‘n Style Luxury Mansion from Mega Bloks®, I knew the girls would be very excited.
What it is:
The Mega Bloks® Barbie Build ‘n Style Luxury Mansion is a full play set that includes everything needed to both build the mansion and to have a fun time playing with it afterward. The mansion comes with clear, illustrated instructions that show how to create the initial mansion design and layout, but also show several other options and encourage kids to use their own creativity and imagination to design and style the house in any way that they like.
The set includes eight rooms, a working elevator and two mini figurines (Barbie and Teresa). There are plenty of accessories from tableware to pets and even fashion changes for the figures. Everything snaps or fits together interchangeably. Here is more information about Mega Bloks Barbie and this set in particular:
Young girls will be empowered to build ‘n style their very own Mega Bloks Barbie world, with over 300 specially-designed pieces and tons of detailed accessories. Collect up to 19 mini fashion dolls — including Barbie, Teresa, Nikki and of course Ken — with changeable hair, accessories and clothing styles! There’s lots of great places to shop, like the Fashion Boutique and the Pet Shop. Hang out at home in the personalized Luxury Mansion, relax at the pool or hop in your convertible and head to the beach house!
Design a dream-house-come-true with the Mega Bloks Barbie Build ‘n Style Luxury Mansion. Decorate eight interchangeable rooms that can be built any way you want! Barbie can build a bedroom with a beautiful canopy bed, a fun living room where Barbie and friends can relax or a bathroom with a “bubbly” tub! – It’s totally up to you! Take the working elevator all the way to the top floor for a super fun party with Mini-Fashion Figures Barbie, Teresa and all their friends!
Here’s our take on it:
When the set arrived, the girls were thrilled. I sat down with them to see what was in the box and if they needed any help putting things together. It turned out to be one of the most fun times I’ve had with them in a while. So often nowadays they don’t need my help (or want it), so this was some good, quality time that was wonderful to have. Hannah and Becca (and later Abbi after she joined us as well), put stickers on pieces and we took turns snapping parts together until we had built the whole mansion together. The instructions were clear enough that Hannah especially could follow them easily, but she liked the excuse to have me there to help. Becca was too impatient to start playing to sit down and look through the instructions much.
Then I watched the girls take turns with the figures and play contentedly in a way that doesn’t happen much lately. Not that there haven’t been a few spats, but Hannah doesn’t always deign to sit down and play with her little sister so it’s good to have something that they can play with and enjoy together, at least sometimes.
As I said, the set comes with everything that Barbie needs – even decorative plants, purses, kitchen appliances like a blender and toaster and more. Plus, each room and its furniture are made up of smaller building blocks fit together. It is A LOT of very tiny pieces – over 300 pieces just in this one set, which kind of scares me a little bit, especially with a puppy, two cats and three little girls who aren’t always very good at picking up after themselves. What we’ve found so far though is that the box for this set is handy to keep around for two reasons: 1) because the box opens up in such a way that the larger side can act as a stable base for the house to sit on instead of carpet when the girls are playing with it on their bedroom floors and 2) the box closes back up to make a good storage option for all of the tiny pieces. So far we’ve kept everything together pretty well and the girls don’t mind taking the house apart to put it back in the box, because re-building the house is half the fun.
While this play set is definitely not for kids under the age of five (due to the small pieces), it’s a fun way for girls to use their imaginations and interact with the Barbie characters they already know and love. The Mega Bloks Barbie Build ‘n Style Luxury Mansion gives them the opportunity to follow written instructions to build something, but also gives them the freedom to use their own creativity to fashion their own designs and engage their imaginations. Even if kids don’t want to do the actual building themselves, it provides a good opportunity for parents and kids to interact together to take on a challenge and there’s plenty of imaginative pretend play to be had with the finished house as well.
Where can you find it?:
The entire line of Mega Bloks Barbie toys hit the stores on December 12th, just in time for the holidays. You can find them at a retailer near you where other Mega Bloks and/or Barbie toys are sold, including Toys-R-Us, a target and Walmart and online at Amazon.com. Prices vary depending on retailer and location, the the suggested retail price for the Mega Bloks Barbie Build ‘n Style Luxury Mansion is $79.99.
I’m so glad to have the opportunity to give another family the chance to have the same fun my girls have had with this set. I have one Mega Bloks Barbie Build ‘n Style Luxury Mansion to give away to a lucky reader! Please enter via the Rafflecopter widget below and I will draw a winner after 12:00am on Sunday, December 23, 2012.
This post courtesy of: Mega Bloks, who provided the product(s) for both review and giveaway. No payment or compensation, other than product samples as described above, was received for this post. All opinions given here are solely my own or those of my family.