Now LEGO Minifigures can book a weekend away in BC’s capital, too.
A Victoria bellman is receiving praise for his striking to-scale replica of the downtown hotel he’s worked at for nearly two decades, which is now on display for all to see.
“I thought maybe one or two people would like it, but it seems like it struck a chord with a lot of people,” said Chateau Victoria’s Glenn Waddingham.
“We’ve got a case made for it, and it’s in the lobby now,” he said, noting built-in lighting gives it a life-like glow.
Waddingham got started on the feat in late 2020 and wrapped up early last month—investing over 500 hours to complete the project, which features around 62,000 individual LEGO pieces.
“It was a one-on-one experience for me,” Waddingham told Victoria Buzz.
“Every night, I would come home, turn on the radio, and it was just me and the replica for three or four hours. Nobody knew about it, except for two or three close friends.”
According to Waddingham, he’s worked at Chateau Victoria for 18 years and has come to know every nook and cranny of the building.
Located along Burdett Avenue, the hotel, built in 1975, is 18-storeys tall and features 118 suites, a pool, and a rooftop restaurant.
“I’ve worked at the hotel for a long time, and I always thought that it was a neat building; it’s not just a box,” said Waddingham, pointing to the pandemic as the push to put his skills to the test.
“I thought it’d be really cool to make the hotel. Then COVID happened, and I ended up having a little more time on my hands.”
He continued, “I started playing around and building it, but it was too big to keep at home, so I wasn’t sure what to do with it. The hotel said they’d like to put it on display.”
Waddingham says the feedback thus far has been “incredible.”
“I thought people would think it’s neat, but they’re taking it to another level, that’s for sure,” he exclaimed.
The attention to detail is evident, as the finished project includes Minifigures that represent actual staff, contractors, and regular guests of the hotel, according to sales manager Chantelle Dean.
“We couldn’t be more proud of Glenn for the engineering feat this project entailed and for his creativity in working with different mediums to patch it all together,” said Dean.
Ultimately, it’s a project that gave Waddingham a sense of purpose amid a pandemic slowdown when he couldn’t serve guests.
Not only that, but it also allowed him to relive childhood memories.
“I loved LEGO when I was a kid,” he added.
“I’m just a typical 50-year-old guy; you like LEGO when you’re young, but then you don’t see it for decades. Lately, LEGO’s come out with some really neat adult sets and modular buildings, so I’ve made a few of those.”