Reviewed by Debbie Lowndes
My daughter (aged 15) and I were provided with the opportunity to visit Keyhunter at Sherlock Street, Birmingham.
What is Keyhunter you may well ask?? Well it is a live escape room venue designed for up to 7 people to participate in. Escape rooms appear to be all the rage at the moment. I could not understand why this maybe prior to our visit. However, after our visit I can truly say I am hooked and can totally understand why visitors are attracted!!
Our slot was booked for 2.30pm. We arrived a little ahead of time. We were greeted in a pleasant friendly manner by staff. The venue is easy to find and very close to the city centre, Birmingham Bullring is a short 10-15 minute walk from the venue, so you could make a day of it and pull in a spot of shopping too. We found the venue easy to find with great signage outside. The Keyhunter logo is eye-catching and stands out too. Upon entrance to the venue there was a reception desk and seating areas were provided so you wish to use these if waiting for someone etc. The waiting/reception area is attractively decorated in bright vibrant colours. I also noticed thank you cards and feedback had been displayed within the waiting area.
There are three different escape rooms provided within the venue (The Triads, The Red Curse and The Double Crossing). This means that if you enjoy your experience you can also visit again and try the other two rooms as they will pose a new challenge as no room is the same I am led to believe.
The staff asked us to read some general do’s and don’ts prior to entering the escape room and they took time to explain how the escape room worked and what we needed to do. We were provided with some notepaper, a pen, a torch plus a walkie talkie prior to entering the room. We were informed if we were struggling we could radio through for a couple of hints, we did use this option to get us going. When we were escorted in the room, prior to being locked in we were made aware of where the emergency key was in case we needed to vacate in a hurry. Obviously, we were advised not to use the key unless necessary, as it would ruin the game and purpose of our visit. We were told we have one hour to crack the safe combination to obtain the key to unlock the door. There was a display within the room counting down so you were well aware of the remaining time.
The door was locked, myself and my daughter found ourselves in the room wondering what to do next and where to start in order to crack the five combination locks to gain access to the clues to crack the final safe combination in order to access the door key. We made a start on each lock point. I cannot say too much about each point otherwise it would give the game away. However, I must say that the owners have well and truly put some hard work into the escape rooms as well as some very clever logical thinking. The room definitely gets you thinking and pulling together as a team as well as bouncing ideas around. A wide range of methods were used for the obtaining the numbers etc. to crack the locks and no two methods incorporated the same way of thinking. You were constantly evaluating whether you were on the right track. My daughter and myself worked together and laughed a lot along the way too. I would image if there was several of you within the room the codes maybe easier to crack as more minds are useful at times like this. Frustration did not set in for my daughter and I, however, I would image that in some instances it does.
Unfortunately, my daughter and I did not crack all of the codes to obtain the room key and we therefore have to be rescued as the hour passed. We were both very keen to discovered the combination the final two locks we needed to obtain in order to gain all the clues to work out the final code for the safe containing the door key. The staff member ran through this with us and it was reassuring as we were on the right track. The room setup was great and well set out, it was clean and comfortable for the task. The lighting was adequate and the room was not completely dark either, my daughter was pleased about this as she had visions of it being pitch black (guess she has watched too much TV).
This type of venue would be ideal for corporate events and team building. It would also serve as a great party venue for groups. The escape rooms no doubt brings out people’s competitive natures, evaluating skills and mathematical knowledge etc.
Even though we failed the task we did have an amazing time and we worked together. We left buzzing and we did find it funny. Sometimes we just failed to spot the obvious!!!
I would encourage everyone to have a go at this type of experience as it is immense fun.
I would rate the venue and experience as a 5 out of 5 as a lot of thought and effort has been put into the venue by staff and owners alike.
Tickets cost from £11 to £22 per person (depending on number of people in group).
Opening times – Monday – Closed / Tuesday to Friday – 3pm to 9pm / Saturday and Sunday – 12pm to 10:30pm
For more information or to make a booking visit www.keyhunter.co.uk.
Keyhunter, 149 Sherlock Street, Birmingham, West Midlands, B5 6NE