Every escape room fan has been drooling over the chance to enter the new Escape Hotel, which has been teasing fans with it’s large signage and creepy social media ads. For the past year, the team behind the illusive game has been hard at work turning what used to be The Geisha House into an escape game mecca. We Are Indie Horror was fortunate enough to be invited to stay at the hotel, and we were, of course, more than happy to oblige.
Our walk down Hollywood Blvd consisted of stepping around tourists with cameras and discussing what exactly as going on. To be honest, we received an email from hotel management telling us to be at the hotel at 5 PM that day, but that was all. Once we finally arrive at the location, we manage to find ourselves waiting alone by the big front doors of the ominous hotel. A phone call sends us to the back door, where we are greeted by Ivan, one of the owners of Escape Hotel. We were led down a dark, red hallway until we enter the hotels lobby.
Modeled after an old 1920’s lobby, the hotel’s main entrance instantly transports you into another world. With plush leather seats and high ceilings complete with a chandelier, this space is is more than just a waiting room. There is a cafe set up complete with coffee drinks and pastries, which will be open to the public regardless of whether or not they plan on playing the games, of which there are ten unique ones.
After we’d met the rest of the team behind Escape Hotel, we were given a tour of a few games before being locked in a room ourselves for about an hour. While we don’t want to divulge too much about the game itself, we will say that we played the Daycare room, which was by far the scariest daycare we’d ever been in. It was ranked two out of five stars, making it the novice game of which we made it out with just over two minutes to spare. The game was fun, intense, creepy, and intriguing, with plenty of challenging but solvable puzzles.
The intriguing aspect of Escape Hotel is in the style of game itself. While other escape rooms have the participant locked in a room, Escape Hotel wants the participants to solve a mystery and complete the story. It is not about escaping, it is about the story itself and what mysteries need to be solved. It adds to the horror, allowing a fully immersive story to be told in various different genres while still keeping the tension real and intense.
Escape Hotel is a mecca for any escape game fan. With ten games ranging in themes from Pirates and WWII bunkers to witchcraft and zombies, there is definitely something for everyone. Perhaps the coolest part of the experience is the passport you are given, which is stamped for each maze you enter, with different stamps indicating if you escape or not.
Escape Hotel will be opening its doors on July 19, but tickets are already available online with a 25% promo code on their website.