The sets are beautiful in and of themselves, but we also love that LEGO's architectural artists offer their own LEGO-based interpretations of the unique construction challenges of each building. For example, when designing the model for the John Hancock Center, LEGO artist Adam Reed Tucker notes that:
"This model offered our first real design challenge. The real building has sloping sides at two different opposing angles that compound each other at the buildings 4 corners. This, especially at this scale, was nearly impossible to achieve. So, I relied on a bit of illusion to help imply the angles since a literal interpretation could not be done aesthetically or structurally. The illusion is simply achieved by viewing the model at a perspective; the alternating setbacks strategically located at key points naturally create 2 opposing slopes right before your eyes."
So, okay, maybe your average 10-year-old may not care about quite this level of detail, but you do, and isn't the definition of a perfect gift something that the whole family can enjoy?
For more back story behind these models, as well as ordering information, visit LEGO.com Architecture.