Escape Rooms Are Underrated

Have you fallen into the slump of when your friends and family get together, the only thing you can think of doing is going for coffee or maybe dinner and drinks? Don’t get me wrong, spending time with the people we care about over a warm cup of coffee or a delicious meal is great - it can just get a little boring after a while.

Speaking from personal experience, whenever my parents would come to Ottawa to visit my sister and I, it always felt like I was grasping at straws trying to think of an activity we could all do together that wasn’t going to a museum (been there, done that), eating (my stomach only has so much room) or sitting in my living room watching paint dry. During one of their last visits to the city, we were walking down Bank Street trying to find something to do when the “Escape Manor” sign caught my eye. Bingo! Escape Rooms are perfect for my family (and I’m sure they could be great for your family/friend groups too) for a couple of reasons.

1. It’s not an activity that will break the bank. Each escape is usually around $24 a person (though these prices will vary) and each escape lasts about 45 minutes. If you were to go out for dinner at most restaurants in the market and get a drink or two, you’re almost guaranteed to be spending this amount or more by the time tax and a tip is included.

2. You can do most rooms with groups up to 6 people, which makes this a fun activity for big groups. It can be really hard to find places that will accommodate groups of more than 4 people without you barely seeing the rest of your party. Since you’re locked in a room all together, you’ll be interacting a lot with the people you came with. Communication is definitely key in these rooms though so make sure you’re playing with people who you know will listen to you and who you will listen to as well.

3. Different learning styles are all useful in these rooms. Whether you are someone who is great at deciphering riddles or someone who is very observant and can notice when something is totally out of place to someone who likes using their hands, there’s something for everyone to do in these rooms. You really need to play to your strengths if you want to escape.

As a kid, I remember playing all sorts of mystery and adventure computer games. Doing an escape room is like being part of one of those games in real life! I am also a super competitive person so knowing that I have to race to beat a clock gives me a personal rush. Recently, I was doing an Escape Room with my boyfriend and his family when on the last clue, he had switched out the last clue with an engagement ring so maybe my love of escape rooms is a little biased.

If you’re interested in trying your luck with a group of friends, family, or even your workmates, there are a bunch of places you can visit, like Escape Manor with locations spread out around the city. Become a jewellery thief or try to escape a haunted cabin in the woods, there are so many options. And you can always grab a drink in their lounge to celebrate a win once you’re done.

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