The LA Girl dubs Los Angeles as the official “escape room capital” of America. Rules are simple: you’re locked in a room with a few other humans and spend the next hour scavenging clues and solving riddles in the name of freedom! Well, maybe that’s easier said than done. But as escape room veterans who have played over 20 rooms, we ranked these as the 5 best ones to put your inner Houdini to the test. (P.S. Read ’til the end for the bonus escape room!)
Address: 4267 W 3rd St, Los Angeles, CA 90020
Price: $40 per person, minimum 4 people per session
This unique and local plot setting makes for a raw experience. Centered on a Los Angeles crime theme, you are invited to a small apartment in Koreatown to discuss a business opportunity, only to find out it’s a test of life or death. Big-time LA drug lord notorious in the streets as Ray Jones has one simple test for you: find all the drugs stashed in the apartment and flush them out before the cops arrive, or face the consequences. We love that each puzzle is challenging but in a fair and logical way. Expect many validating “aha” moments! If that’s not reassuring enough, hints are generously given throughout the 90-minute experience making it certified newbie-proof. The game is entirely immersive and allows plenty for each person to do, even for their largest group of 11.
LA Girl Tip: Use all five of your senses.
Address: 7270 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90046
Price Per Person: $45 Monday – Thursday/$52 Friday – Sunday
LA locals have crowned 60out as “escape room king” for their clever puzzles and detailed production. Their new Jumanji escape room is our favorite so far. The film it’s based on begins with 2 friends trying out a new board game they found, but 60out has you sneaking into your friend’s house. While waiting for your friend, you discover a series of mysterious puzzles in their room, and before you know it, you are sucked into the chaotic world of Jumanji. Out of all the rooms listed, this 60-minute experience (hence the name 60out) has the most impressive technology! They managed to capture the mysterious universe created in not only the original film but also the 2017 remake. Each teammate is granted their own unique strength, along with their own set of puzzles that you will all use to survive. Don’t let this charming jungle fool you. Bring your best team because this game is jam-packed with challenging puzzles!
LA Girl Tips: 1) Probably a no-brainer, but it’s helpful to have seen the movies. The concept of each task and the setup of the props are direct references to key points in both films. 2) The first room is mostly filler puzzles so ask away for hints! 3) We recommend making reservations weeks in advance since it’s fairly new and very popular.
Address: 12909 Foothill Blvd, Sylmar, CA 91342
Difficulty level: 9/10
The Basement is the first out of the 4 chapters in their escape room chronology (The Basement, The Elevator Shaft, The Study, & The Courtyard). You have been kidnapped by Edward Tandy, a cannibalistic serial killer who has set up a series of twisted games in his deceased mother’s home. You must prove you are worthy of escaping, according to his late mother’s standards. Easy peasy. Compared to the other rooms listed, the experience is on the shorter side, lasting only 45 minutes. The overall production for this escape room made it feel like we were in a live horror movie. The actors are phenomenal and appear out of nowhere to deliver clues. With baffling riddles and disturbing tasks, this game is not for the squeamish. Beginners, beware.
LA Girl Tip: The game starts as soon as you check in. Pay close attention.
Address: 10250 Santa Monica Blvd Space 2945, Los Angeles, CA 90067
Difficulty level: 6/10
Located in Westfield Century City Mall, Prison Break is one of The Escape Game’s 4 themes (The Heist, The Depths, Special Ops, & Prison Break). You are the lucky prisoners granted 1 hour to escape if you can solve the warden’s puzzles. There can be up to 8 people for one game, but you are split into groups and must collaborate from 2 different jail cells. Eerie sound effects paired with realistic props make for a creepy, immersive experience. While Prison Break is the most difficult out of the 4 themes, hints are curated and generously given, making it beginner friendly. Our favorite part is that all 3 rooms you have to break out of in one session is very different from the other!
LA Girl Tip: Wear something you can crawl in.
Address: 624 N Harbor Blvd, Fullerton, CA 92832
Difficulty level: 5/10
If you thrive on being shaken to your core, Zoe is the escape room for you. This 60-minute experience is not your average horror-themed escape room and is probably the scariest room we have ever played in the LA area. But ironically, this is a great choice for beginners (well, a beginner with some thick skin). While the puzzles alone are much simpler than the previous rooms listed, the actors and dark atmosphere make them feel a bit more challenging. Luckily, you get to choose from 3 scare levels, with the third one guaranteeing you’ll need a change of pants. You play the majority of this game in the dark, and unlike The Basement, the actors are purely there to scare you, so be prepared!
LA Girl Tip: The bigger your group is, the more people to hide behind.