Mystery Solved! If it weren’t for those meddling kids…

By Julie Kertes

fun things to do in la

I just experienced the most spectacular date night out with friends unique to all the fun things to do in LA, but unfortunately, I can’t tell you about it. Well, that’s not entirely true. I can tell you a little.

Last month, my husband and I planned a “triple” date with friends and headed to the Westside to partake in

Escape Key Entertainment’s interactive, live-action game. Up to six people are locked in a room and left to find clues and solve riddles to “escape” within 60 minutes.

(Insider tip: The idea of being locked in a room may be smothering to some people, so choose your fellow sleuths wisely.) I couldn’t have chosen a better group of smart, logical, analytical, creative and – most important for this occasion – funny people.

Escape Key Entertainment offers two game themes: Casino Heist and Mystery of Senator Payne, with more themes to be added soon. After an introduction from our game master and a couple of cheesy videos to set the stage, we were escorted into a spacious, unassuming room where our mission began.

fun things to do in la

Will the casino heist be foiled? Only time will tell!

I won’t offer any spoiler details, but I will say that as soon as the door was locked and the countdown began, the six of us became Scooby Doo and the Mystery Gang. One riddle solved led to the next clue, and what I loved about this experience was that it truly was a group effort. Just when you think you’ve hit a roadblock and can’t solve any more riddles, one person in the group will have a breakthrough and lead the team to the next clue. The game master, who observes the action from a different room, is available for a “hint” if the group gets really stumped. You may leave for a bathroom break if need be, but I highly suggest taking care of business beforehand so you can keep the pace going.

And a fast pace it is. Everyone’s brains are moving at lightning speed with the pressure of that 60-minute deadline. The energy is invigorating and each riddle solved, empowering.

After solving the riddle that led us to freedom, we trekked across town for dessert to recount every minute in that room – who solved what, which prop was where, why we did this or that – and started planning our next visit to foil the Casino Heist. It’s been more than two weeks and we’re still talking about it.

Escape Key is located at 1560 Corinth Avenue in West Los Angeles. Recommended for sleuths 16 years and up and prices range from $120 to $160 per group. Visit for more information.

“There aren’t many experiences where you have ZERO idea of what to expect beforehand … and that kind of suspense is so much fun. It’s like a real life game of clue. I loved it!” ~ Casie Tabanou

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