A Birmingham entertainment venue, which opened less than a year ago and challenges players to escape within the hour, is already stepping up plans for expansion.
Escape Live, which runs live games for teams of up to five people who work to crack puzzles and escape from a locked room, launched in January 2015 and has been operating at almost full capacity ever since.
The venue, based in Henrietta Street, is now top of Trip Advisor’s list of Fun & Games in the city after having already welcomed more than 8,000 visitors.
Now, the company is in the process of creating two new themed rooms at its existing location in Birmingham, and is opening another venue in Southend-on-Sea in Essex.
Joint owners of Escape Live, Jas Sodhi and radio DJ John Dalziel, say they have been overwhelmed by the popularity of the games.
“The reaction to Escape Live has far exceeded what we ever expected,” John said.
“We now have customers who have been in to escape from one room then rushing back to do the second, then emailing us afterwards asking us to open a third and fourth – so it seemed only fair to satisfy their thirst for more!”
The venue currently holds two rooms with different themes; Dr Wilson’s Office, a detective based game, and Room 13, which is more horror themed.
The idea in both is to piece together a range of clues and escape from the room within an hour.
“Part of the reason the rooms have been so popular is due to the level of thought that has gone into them,” Jas said.
“We came up with Dr Wilson’s Office after being inspired by Sherlock Holmes, which is a popular story that most people can relate to.
“Whereas with Room 13 we wanted to push the boundaries a little more so incorporated more of a gory, horror aspect.
“And now escape rooms are growing in popularity and more people are aware of Escape Live, so with the new rooms we are looking to introduce themes that are more out there and inventive – although that’s all we’re willing to reveal!”
The pair also say the venue has been popular for corporate events and teambuilding exercises for businesses.
“The corporate market has really boomed for us and we’re currently working with some massive companies which are based locally, including the likes of Deloitte, Vodafone and the West Midlands Fire Service,” John added.
“Nando’s are our most popular corporate visitors though – they’ve even been known to bring in teams of people that the company hadn’t even hired yet, purely to see how the individuals would get along in a team environment!
“The escape rooms really are for everyone – stag and hen do’s, students, couples and families alike all visit and enjoy the experience so much they make repeat visits afterwards.
“We are now in the final stages of building the Essex location which is due to open in late 2015, but we’re not just looking to stop there – so for anyone interested in franchise opportunities with Escape Live, feel free to get in touch.”