Countdown to Memphis Escape Rooms Opening Starts Now

Countdown to Memphis Escape Rooms Opening Starts Now

How would you like to be locked in an unfamiliar room with only an hour to figure out how to escape? Sounds like a crazy thing to do for fun, but "escape rooms" have been popping up all over the country as a way for groups of friends (and strangers) to challenge themselves with puzzles, clues, and codes.

On July 20, Memphis will get its own version. I tracked down one of the owners, Mallory Lynch, to tell me more about the upcoming opening of Memphis Escape Rooms.


Mallory told me that there are many escape rooms across the country, but that Memphis' version is independently owned and operated by her and her husband Stephen Lynch, plus Keith Edwards, Ryan Hoover, and Haley Hoover. Together they make up the new Memphis-based creative agency, Puzzol Creative, LLC.

The group first experienced an escape room on a trip to NYC; they had so much fun they then went to one in Nashville. When they saw that Memphis didn't have one, they did what Memphians do: took care of business and opened their own.

Here's how Memphis Escape Room works. Up to seven people are locked in a room that is set up to look like an ordinary, if unfamiliar place. Mallory says think less crime scene, more Sherlock Holmes looking for clues in a home or business. There is also a story or scenario - say, for example, you're trying to stop a serial killer from committing their next murder - while also trying to escape.

There is a key or code hidden somewhere in the room that will help you achieve your goal and get out, but in order to find it, you'll need to do some investigating, puzzle-solving, and decoding. I know that sounds pretty vague, but Mallory understandably didn't want to give too much away.

The clock is ticking (I believe literally) so you can really find out how well you work under pressure. And if you don't solve the puzzle, you'll still be escorted out of the room safely after an hour of course, and you can sign up to try it again.

Memphis Escape Rooms will have two different scenario rooms, and they plan to change them quarterly. The owners create the intricate stories and clues themselves, so they'll be different from any other escape room you might go to. It's $20 per person, or you can buy out the room for $140. Some escape rooms have attendants, or people inside the room helping out, but you're on your own in Memphis.

While one person is welcome to try it for themselves, Mallory recommends at least four people. Keep in mind that the rooms can hold up to seven people, so unless you buy out the whole room for your crew, you'll be paired with strangers and have to work with them to solve the puzzle.

To me, this seems like it would add another element of challenge and fun; it's just something you might want to be aware of going in. Mallory also says that the clues and puzzles will fit a broad range of strengths and you don't need to have any prior knowledge. Memphis Escape Rooms will be appropriate for people over age eight, but kids under 14 have to be with a parent.

Memphis Escape Rooms opens on July 20 at 6263 Poplar Avenue on the 11th floor. You can get more info and book a room on their website, Facebook, and Twitter pages.

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John Guinn
GOOD for Memphis! :-)
June 17, 2015 8:31am
Christopher Stengel
This seems sketchy in that people are trusting a total stranger to ' safely lock them in a cage ' for an hour, but it totally seems like a fun thing to do. Oh well. If a person dies sarcastically, it doesn't count, right? I am legitimately and sincerely interested, though, so thank you for the article.
June 17, 2015 11:00am
Sophea Hong
This seems very interesting and I'll be sure to check it out! I love watching crime dramas so this will put an interesting twist to it! I'm glad Memphis have more fun things for people to do around the city! It's important for growth! :-)
June 17, 2015 2:54pm
I would love to try this! The price per person is just right!
June 17, 2015 7:33pm
Ah! It opens on mine and my fiancé's birthday!! Happy birthday to us! Can't wait!!
June 20, 2015 11:42am
Antonico Thomas
This seems so fun
June 20, 2015 5:08pm
nedia caldwell
It sounds rather tempting if you like games of rhe sort. I think I would try it with a group of friends or family and the price is nice also. Great little tool for Memphis
June 21, 2015 4:11am
I'm concerned about security/safety, this IS Memphis will they have security cameras for the room? What if someone "freaks out" and needs medical attention? Just a few reality checks to throw out there...
June 21, 2015 7:07am
Holly Whitfield

Hi Cindy! This is an established concept that has been successful in many other cities across the country and is all about entertainment and fun. Like all games or activities, it's not for everyone. There are cameras in the room where the participants will be observed by staff members, no one is actually, literally "locked" in the room - they can leave if they wish, I'm sure. It's a game. I'm not sure what Memphis has to do with it, other than being owned by some Memphis-loving citizens who wanted to bring this concept to our city. 

June 22, 2015 5:23pm
lauren mount
Did this in Nashville. So much fun!!
June 30, 2015 12:44pm
escape room Na…
I'm a huge fan of escape room game. My first experienced to play escape game in an escape room Nashville was outstanding.Now I am enthusiastically waiting to play new escape game.
May 30, 2016 12:24am