Enjoy being handcuffed? Want to be locked in a room? Then pay for that very privilege with one of the greatest things to do in Hong Kong [other countries are available] in an Escape Room.
The premises is simple. You are locked in a room and must escape within a set time whilst solving problems. Think along the lines of The Crystal Maze [UK TV show].
The idea originates from online escape games where you would click on the screen and find items to help your character escape…boring. However, by making this a reality then it soon becomes one of the most interesting things to do.
Freeing Hong Kong
The first time I took part in this insane activity was in the first quarter of 2015 with “Freeing Hong Kong”, in Causeway Bay.
The waiting area was small with no seats but I could see multiple doors all hosting different themed rooms to escape from. My adrenaline was pumped, especially as the three friends and I had opted to escape from a vampire themed room.
We were led into a small room, but before the game could commence we were each handcuffed to the wall. Only one of us was provided with a flashlight. As the staff member abruptly shut the door banishing all light, the game would initiate.
Frantically trying to escape, we eventually composed ourselves and realised that the wall to which we were bound was crammed with numbers. Using the flashlight and problem solving skills we were free from our shackles within five minutes. We bashed our way through an adjoining door (Freeing HK isn’t a simple one room puzzle, instead it contains numerous interlinking rooms).
We entered a crypt with a vampires coffin dominating the room. We found skeltons and dusty chests. This is where we remained for the next 40 minutes, unable to solve anything that would help us progress; even with the aid of the help button. [A help button is allowed to be pressed once. Upon being pressed a staff member will come to your aid to offer some friendly assistance]
Yup, four intellects could not escape. Vampire chow we became.
The staff were friendly and showed us the solution to the room. They opened the coffin which was concealing a slide! We all went in and slid down into another room…who knew Dracula was just a big kid? More puzzles awaited and we were all left dumb founded at how inept we were.
If you think we were stupid, 15% of people never free themselves from the handcuffs. 45 minutes in pure darkness…maybe they just discovered a new fetish.
I was in love with escape rooms and it wasn’t long before I returned.
In a group of three I survived a plane crash and escaped into a jungle trying to figure out clues to lead to our freedom.
We made it very far into the game but were simply not quick enough.
A third time visiting, just two of us embarked on an Egyption adventure. We solved the first room which led us inside a pyramid where the ceiling literally came crashing down on us. Physically holding the ceiling and solving infuriating puzzles is challenging.
We somehow made it out the room and walked through a futuristic corridor where a TV and crystal welcomed us.
Seeing a Stormtrooper helmet I instinctively put it on to live out my jedi fighting fantasy only to realise that it was a major aid to solving puzzles. Despite finding this clue we were too slow.
The staff showed us the remainder of what we had to do and we were flummoxed. There was a lot more that needed to be done in order to escape.
Trying a different company “Lost Escape”, in Yau Ma Tei, I was delighted to find a more customer aware company that had a big waiting area and even a dart board.
Just two of us would venture into a house where a murder was committed. Bodies in the fridge and eery pictures on the cabinet. BANG!
Yes, I screamed. My friend screamed. A hand fell from a hidden box.
The theatrics were amazing. After that scare we located a hidden crawl space and emerged into a bare room with a few clothes and belongings. The rooms were linked and using our braincells we unlocked numerous things.
The clock was ticking but with less than 10 seconds remaining we discovered the code and released ourselves from the room. We had escaped.
The company has great set designs and we went again to tackle the hardest room they had. I won’t say much about it but it is beyond creative and was beyond difficult.
Lost Escape are nice and even if your time is up, depending on if others are waiting to try out the room, they will let you continue to solve the puzzles.
Over an hour later and dozens of cries for help we escaped.
Escape rooms are simply the greatest and being set at reasonable prices (below 160HKD) make for a great activity to pass time. Lose your imagination in these fictional worlds and you will have a blast.
Overall, Freeing HK is decent and has great set pieces but with a lack of waiting room I have to say Lost Escape is better. The theatrics and continual room renovations make Lost Escape the best.
There are other company’s operating in Hong Kong but I have yet to test them out.
- Groupon often has good deals so check there website out before booking
- Like Lost Escape on Facebook for a discount
- Nothing will prepare you for how difficult these escape rooms actually are