Same concept, different company: a group revels after getting out of the 'escape room' in Toronto.
Two local entrepreneurs hope to bring the ‘escape room’ concept to Vancouver
Your options for corporate team building just got a lot more intimate.
In January, two local entrepreneurs will launch Vancouver's first “escape room” arcade called SmartyPantz, which will be tucked in a basement in Gastown. The idea? You pay to lock yourself in a room with a group of friends, or coworkers, or strangers, and attempt to collectively solve puzzles to the tick of a timer. If you get the puzzle right—a mix of logic games, tinkering with props and solving riddles, you escape. If you don’t, you get to spend a stressful afternoon locked in a spy-, dream-, or serial killer-themed room. If that’s your idea of fun.
The 3,200-sq.-ft. Vancouver complex of escape rooms, one of of its kind in Canada, is the pilot project of Chris Ricard and Dan Civiero, games enthusiasts with backgrounds in sales and marketing. As for the concept, escape rooms—the modern-day analog to the laser tag domes and paintball parks of generations past—are the latest iteration of wholesome evening fun, a market that Ricard and Civiero hope to capture. (Escape rooms have roots in gamer culture and, perhaps not surprisingly, Japan.)
Not recommended for first dates.