Why we made an escape room?

For many, the prospect of running a business is a dream that is far too often put off. We often lean towards safety and security and before we know it we’re nearly at the point of retiring. I (Dan) had spent a decade developing brands in the motorcycle industry. It was a fantastic experience but always lacked that reward of knowing that what I was building was for me and my family. There was a terrible 24-month period where Lisa and myself both lost parents and grandparents in a very short timescale. This encouraged us to reevaluate our priorities with what we aspired to achieve. These events showed us that sometimes caution needed to be thrown to the wind. We needed to aspire to do things out of love rather than be limited by fear. We decided to take the plunge and look at making something for ourselves.

Exeter’s Haunted House

In the years previous we had run a charity Halloween event that had raised funds for local causes. This was known as Exeter’s Haunted House. The event which started as a few pallets and friends in our back garden grew into an event that attracted over a thousand people annually with a cast of 24. It was a lot of work to make something that could withstand the elements in the dark winter months and coordinate so many people into a viable storyline. Despite every year saying we wouldn’t do it again we kept coming back to it! It was special. The excitement that we could generate was infectious. The awe in response to people seeing what we had achieved in our garden. Everyone who was involved, whether visiting or volunteering always had amazing memories to take away. We wanted to do more of this.

Initial Views of Escape rooms

The prospect of an escape room was one that I had previously scoffed at. It was not particularly favorable. “So you pay to be locked in a room only to find obtuse ways to get out again?”. I am happy to admit that I was wrong! What escapes rooms enable are an opportunity to immerse yourself into a world and work with people to experience storytelling. It was never about escaping the room but escaping reality.

Starting the journey

As we experienced some of the amazing Escape room venues across Devon and beyond we were well and truly hooked. After identifying a desire to focus on intuitive puzzles and storytelling we cobbled together a humble amount of funds and developed a business plan. This was finally an opportunity for us to develop our own business it wasn’t with the objective of ousting the current escape rooms in the area but complimenting them and working with them to build a growing escape room community. Somewhere where we could tell stories and create experiences. Our adventure had begun…