After much orchestration, I finally got my hands on one of the Voila S553 dollhouses (first pic). It's a 19"x19"x28" dollhouse with 12 rooms. What appeals most to me is its beach house vibe, hint of Asian flair in its design and the fact that it has a fireplace on each floor, removable roof panels and sliding windows and doors. The house can be arranged in a variety of ways and the porches are modular. I intend on ditching the door component, columns and the sliding panels with the shutters--replacing them with some additional Plexi sliders like the four you see on the front of the house. I may also replace the roof with Plexi too. We'll see. It all depends on how much it costs for the roof panels. I've been thinking that I might decorate it as a modern hotel/bed and breakfast. It seems open and airy like a vacation house.
I also added the Lundby Stockholm 2005 dollhouse to my collection (second pic). I don't usually have interest in any 1:16/1:18 scale dollhouses (except for the Tomy Smaller Homes), but this one is a decent little collector's item since it was designed by Ann Morsing and Beban Nord of Box Design and offers mini paintings by Lisa Rinnevuo. Is it me or does it seem like the Lundby production quality has gone down? I think I drove the sales staff crazy at a local toy store while I dug through and compared every Stockholm accessory on the shelf to make sure that the ones I purchased were painted and assembled well. I was surprised at how poor many had been put together. I didn't purchase any figures but I noticed that many of them had horrible face paint which made figures look like they had tarantula eyes or lopsided faces with joker smiles and lipstick smears. They were figures for a miniature insane asylum, not a "happy family" dollhouse. In a word = Scary.
Since I want to try out some decorating in the Voila house when it arrives, I will begin the process of disassembling the Kaleidoscope House, wrapping it in cellophane, then bubble wrap and then packing it in a box filled with Styrofoam peanuts. Not exciting, but I like to keep my home relatively minimal and "everything in its place". I don't display more than three houses at a time. I've decorated the Kaleidoscope House the most over the past 7 years so it gets the storage unit treatment.