St. Louis Escape – Pirate’s Curse [Review]

Blow the man down!

Location:  St. Louis, MO

Date Played: March 21, 2019

Team size: up to 8; we recommend 4-5

Duration: 60 minutes

Price: $25 per player

Ticketing: Public

Emergency Exit Rating: [A+] No Lock

Physical Restraints: [A+] No Physical Restraints

REA Reaction

Pirate’s Curse looked great and included some interesting puzzles.

Unfortunately, the great things about this escape game were undercut by a lack of feedback, finicky technology, and gamemastering that became condescending when we became confused by the lack of feedback and finicky technology.

The reason to play Pirate’s Curse is to see the set. If sets are your thing, then this is a must-play. Beyond set design, we found this experience lacking.

In-game: An open door with a coat of arms on it.

Who is this for?

  • Adventure seekers
  • Scenery snobs
  • Best for players with at least some experience

Why play?

  • A great pirate adventure set

Story

We’d boarded a cursed pirate galleon loaded with gold and treasure. In order to keep the gold and our lives, however, we would have to break the treasure’s curse.

In-game: A wrack filled with muskets and swords.

Setting

Pirate’s Curse was a compact game with an attractive pirate ship’s interior as the set.

It was deliberately designed from floor to ceiling and beautifully weathered. From a visual standpoint, there was a lot to enjoy in this game.

In-game: a dead and decaying pirate captain surrounded by treasure.

Gameplay

St. Louis Escape’s Pirate’s Curse was a standard escape room with a moderate level of difficulty.

Core gameplay revolved around searching, observing, making connections, and puzzling.

In-game: Closeup of a shelf with a lantern and a ship in a bottle.

Analysis

➕ The pirate ship looked outstanding. We appreciated the rounded aesthetic that made it feel especially… ship-y.

➕/➖ Pirate’s Curse included some interesting and thematic layered puzzles. Unfortunately, many of these were not clearly clued. Additional playtesting would go a long way.

➖ Pirate’s Curse included a lot of different symbol systems. This started to feel repetitive.

In-game: A bright "we need a clue" sign beside a flashlight, an ornate skull, and many small treasure chests.

➖ We had some problems with triggered opens. In one instance, the open was substantially delayed. Additionally, if we closed anything that we had previously triggered to open, we had to resolve that puzzle to reopen that part of the game. This was tedious when we wanted to recheck our searching.

Pirate’s Curse lacked feedback. We were hardly ever sure when we’d solved something. Inclusion of sound and light cues, or even springs, so that opens would prominently pop, would have helped build forward momentum.

The barred off ceiling of the ship.

➕ The gold and jewels looked great. St. Louis Escape designed them in such a way that they were beautiful and touchable, but not distracting.

➕ We especially enjoyed one satisfying late-game search solve that didn’t flow as we’d expected.

➖ The final puzzle was incredibly finicky and lacked feedback. It took a hint and an unfortunately sassy conversation with our gamemaster to figure out that we had solved the puzzle minutes earlier. When the gamemaster came in, we asked for a demonstration of the final puzzle and it once again was finicky and slow to respond. We kind of enjoyed how this undercut the condescension that she’d flung our way.

Tips For Visiting

  • You can park for free on the street directly in front of the building or on the side of the building.
  • There are stairs up to the escape room lobby and the escape rooms.
  • Beware that St. Louis Escape has a habit for putting 4-digit solutions into 5-digit locks.

Book your hour with St. Louis Escape’s Pirate’s Curse, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.

Disclosure: St. Louis Escape provided media discounted tickets for this game.

Red Herring Escape Rooms – The Deadly Inheritance [Review]

Cousins Unite!

Location:  St. Louis, MO

Date Played: March 22, 2019

Team size: up to 8; we recommend 4-6

Duration: 60 minutes

Price: $27.50 per player

Ticketing: Public

Emergency Exit Rating: [B] Emergency Code

Physical Restraints: [A+] No Physical Restraints

REA Reaction

The Deadly Inheritance was our favorite escape room from our 2019 trip to St Louis.

This was a heavily puzzle-centric escape game with a quirky setup. It was a bit old school, but it was well-executed for what it was.

In-game: statues of a lighthouse and a hard-helmet for diving.

The set was worn, however. If you’re the type of player who values set design, narrative, and adventure… it was a little light on those elements. Instead it delivered strong gameplay, great puzzle flow, and some interesting interactions.

If you’re looking for a traditional escape room with a funny setup and solid execution, then this is a fantastic option and we absolutely recommend it if you’re in St Louis.

Who is this for?

  • Puzzle lovers
  • Any experience level
  • Players who don’t need to be a part of every puzzle

Why play?

  • Strong puzzle-centric gameplay
  • A quirky, funny setup

Story

We’d received a letter from an attorney representing the estate of our recently deceased Uncle Martin. Our mysterious uncle, whom we had never met, nor heard of, was a pirate and had left his fortune to his nieces and nephews… if we could find it.

In-game: Uncle Martin's house includes an old TV, a fireplace, and an overt nautical theme.

Setting

The Deadly Inheritance was a puzzle room in a quirky nautical set. The room was showing its age. Its focus was on the puzzles rather than the set design. That said, there were some interesting elements to take in.

In-game: a boat and ship light.

Gameplay

Red Herring Escape Rooms’ The Deadly Inheritance was a standard escape room with a moderate level of difficulty.

Core gameplay revolved around searching and puzzling.

In-game: Porthole windows and mirrors.

Analysis

➕ The Deadly Inheritance started with a hilarious intro video. It set the tone for a fun escape room experience that didn’t take itself or its ridiculous scenario too seriously.

➕ The Deadly Inheritance had a weird aesthetic that we enjoyed. It was clearly built on a budget, but built with care. It all came together to create our strange uncle’s abode. When your main character is an eccentric millionaire, you have a creative license to cobble together something interesting… and that’s exactly what Red Herring Escape Rooms did.

➖ The room was worn. Some of the locks needed to be replaced. One of the input mechanisms was finicky.

➕ The puzzles were delightful. They were varied and made use of interesting and unexpected props. Our Uncle had quite the collection of oddities! We solved some layered puzzles and other more straight forward ones.

➖ Most of the puzzles were built into props, but not into the set itself. There was opportunity to use the gamespace to create exciting, memorable moments.

Red Herring's quirky and elegant lobby.
Red Herring Escape Room had a great lobby

➕ There was a lot of gameplay packed into this escape room. The game flowed well, encouraging us to start certain puzzles early, for example, and funneling us away from potential bottlenecks.

The Deadly Inheritance offered a particular style of puzzle-focused gameplay. While the puzzles flowed well, the gameplay felt like solving many unconnected puzzles in an eclectic space rather than solving through a cohesive adventure. Your appreciation and enjoyment of this escape room will depend heavily on your style preferences.

Tips For Visiting

  • It looks like there is street parking.
  • Red Herring Escape Rooms has a gorgeous lobby. It’s a comfortable place to hang out.

Book your hour with Red Herring Escape Rooms’ The Deadly Inheritance, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.

St. Louis Escape – Haunted Hotel [Review]

Animatronic Hotel

Location:  St. Louis, MO

Date Played: March 21, 2019

Team size: up to 10; we recommend 3-5

Duration: 60 minutes

Price: $25 per player

Ticketing: Public

Emergency Exit Rating: [A+] No Lock

Physical Restraints: [A+] No Physical Restraints

REA Reaction

St. Louis Escape’s Haunted Hotel felt like an ode to Disney. Some of it was overt; some of it was in the subtle choices of props and effects.

This felt much more like Disney’s Haunted Mansion than what you’d expect from a game named Haunted Hotel built by a haunted house company. That is to say, it wasn’t scary.

In-game: a suit of armor in front of worn plaster walls, the insignia for Disney's "Haunted Mansion" hands proudly.

In St. Louis Escape’s collection of strong sets, this was my favorite, partially because it had some unusual elements… and because I’ve seen plenty of Egyptian tombs, pirate ships, and murder basements. A haunted hotel was a welcome change.

There was a ton to look at in this game… and looking at all of the stuff was usually more entertaining than solving the puzzles.

The puzzle and game design fell short with weak cluing, some damaged components, and a puzzle that was remarkably out of place… not just in this particular game, but in the St. Louis Escape facility.

If you’re going to play one game at St. Louis Escape, it should either be Haunted Hotel or Cellar Escape. For my money, Cellar Escape offered considerably better gameplay… but Haunted Hotel was a lot less scary and had much more charm and novelty.

Who is this for?

  • Adventure seekers
  • Scenery snobs
  • Best for players with at least some experience

Why play?

  • Beautiful and unusual set design

Story

Checking into this ghoulish hotel was easy. The question was, could we check out?

In-game: The hotel's decrepit front desk.

Setting

Haunted Hotel had a busy, heavily detailed set filled with quirky animatronics. It was pretty clear that the creators of this game were Disney fans.

St Louis Escape had deliberately designed everything in the space from the floor to the ceiling. Everything was beautifully weathered. There was so much to look at.

In-game: The ornate yet dusty tile floor.

Gameplay

St. Louis Escape’s Haunted Hotel was a standard escape room with a moderate level of difficulty.

Core gameplay revolved around searching, observing, making connections, and puzzling.

In-game: a creepy portrait with its eyes cut out.

Analysis

➕ The detailed set of Haunted Hotel was a joy to explore. It was busy, but not distracting. We enjoyed the aesthetic.

➖ Intentional weathering aside, the set was heavily worn. One key prop was almost impossible to find due to wear.

➕ Our favorite puzzles resolved to tangible interactions with the set. These were the best parts of the playthrough.

➖After the opening scene, Haunted Hotel was almost entirely linear. We spent a lot of time waiting idly because we had too many teammates and too few open puzzles.

➖ Haunted Hotel included a laminated runbook. While it didn’t rely on this as heavily as in some of St. Louis Escape’s other games, it was frustrating to be concentrating on paper cluing instead of immersing ourselves in the set.

➕/➖ Haunted Hotel included a few strong layered puzzles. Unfortunately, each one had its own ambiguity issue. The clue structure wasn’t quite all in place.

➕ We enjoyed the presence of ghostly characters.

In-game: The ceiling adorned with art.

➖The audio was a persistent problem. The intro video lacked audio. We couldn’t hear the ghostly characters very well. At points we were confused whether audio was part of a puzzle, an indication of puzzle progress, background ambiance, or the screams of players in other games.

➖It was easy to accidentally re-trigger the animatronics. This proved confusing.

➕/➖ Bits of story were scattered about Haunted Hotel. The ghosts contributed to our understanding of the story. Ultimately, however, the experience fell short of succeeding as a story-driven adventure.

➖ As we played Haunted Hotel we continually felt that St. Louis Escape took shortcuts in design and maintenance. We encountered one entirely broken puzzle; we didn’t have to solve it to achieve the goal. We could shortcut another puzzle by finding one key piece. Additionally, one puzzle felt completely out of place – aesthetically and thematically – in the experience. We were baffled by its presence.

Tips For Visiting

  • You can park for free on the street directly in front of the building or on the side of the building.
  • There are stairs up to the escape room lobby and the escape rooms.
  • Beware that St. Louis Escape has a habit of putting 4-digit solutions into 5-digit locks.
  • This escape room was haunted, but not scary.

Book your hour with St. Louis Escape’s Haunted Hotel, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.

Disclosure: St. Louis Escape provided media discounted tickets for this game.

St. Louis Escape – Cellar Escape [Review]

High-end murder basement

Location:  St. Louis, MO

Date Played: March 21, 2019

Team size: up to 10; we recommend 3-5

Duration: 60 minutes

Price: $25 per player

Ticketing: Public

Emergency Exit Rating: [A+] No Lock

Physical Restraints:  [B] Mechanical Release

REA Reaction

Cellar Escape was comfortably our group’s favorite game at St. Louis Escape.

While its gameplay was a little more search-centric than we typically go for, the game’s runbook was onerous, and the story was underdeveloped… the set design was top-notch and the game played fairly cleanly.

If you’re visiting St. Louis Escape and you’re comfortable with a horror experience, Cellar Escape is our recommendation. If you’d like something a little less intense, we suggest attempting Haunted Hotel (review coming soon) instead.

In-game: A dead man sitting at a desk with a typewriter in betwen two jail cells.

Who is this for?

  • Adventure seekers
  • Scenery snobs
  • Players interested in moderate horror
  • Any experience level

Why play?

  • Great set design
  • Intense moments

Story

We were trapped in a serial killer’s lair and had to find a out way out before he returned.

In-game: An electrical box labeled "Danger Live Wires."

Setting

Cellar Escape was St. Louis Escape’s take on a murder basement. From a set design standpoint, it delivered everything that you’d want out of a murder basement. It was dark, grim, gritty, intimidating, and bloody.

As with all of St. Louis Escape’s sets, it was thoroughly designed from floor to ceiling.

In-game: A meat-grinder oozing large amounts of ground, bloody flesh.

Gameplay

St. Louis Escape’s Cellar Escape was a standard escape room with a moderate level of difficulty and a split-team beginning.

Core gameplay revolved around searching, observing, making connections, and puzzling.

In-game: A red we need a clue sign sitting beside a laminated and spiral-bound book labeled "CELLAR ESCAPE." All surrounded by a beautiful set.

Analysis

Cellar Escape looked murder basement-y. It was dark and foreboding, but also detailed and thoughtfully designed.

➕ The split beginning worked well to encourage teamwork early on and didn’t overstay its welcome.

➕ We especially enjoyed the puzzles that felt authentic to the scenario. The escape room was at its best when we were deriving solutions that seemed plausible for escaping a killer’s lair.

In-game: A dead man sitting at a desk.

Cellar Escape relied heavily on a runbook. This was frustrating to use and detracted from our experience in the gamespace. Furthermore, it seemed to not be quite up to date with the current gameplay of the escape room. We encountered runbook ghost puzzles.

➕ St. Louis Escape seems to have a penchant for breaker boxes in their escape room design; it worked well in this room.

➖ Some of the tech in Cellar Escape had especially tight tolerances. If our hands were just slightly off they wouldn’t trigger, even though we’d correctly solved the puzzle. This put gameplay on ice for a little longer than it should have.

➖ Unclued trick locks are problematic in escape rooms. If you don’t know how to solve them, you will burn far too much of your game clock trying. If you basically know how to open all of the common trick locks on the market like David does… then they’re kind of boring. Either way, they’re suboptimal.

In-game: The cobweb covered ceiling of the Cellar Escape.

➕ Cellar Escape ground to a good jump-scare.

➖ Cellar Escape could fit a lot of people. St. Louis Escape will sell up to 12 tickets to it. The gameplay, however, had choke points. If you play with a large team, there would be a lot of down time for individual players.

Cellar Escape was a search-heavy escape room. In some instances, this worked well with the theme. In other instances, we found this tedious. Your mileage will vary.

Tips For Visiting

  • You can park for free on the street directly in front of the building or on the side of the building.
  • There are stairs up to the escape room lobby and the escape rooms.
  • Beware that St. Louis Escape has a habit for putting 4-digit solutions into 5-digit locks.

Book your hour with St. Louis Escape’s Cellar Escape, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.

Disclosure: St. Louis Escape provided media discounted tickets for this game.

Escape STL – Investigation of a Miss Treedeath [Review]

I can feel it coming in the mail tonight.

Location:  St. Louis, MO

Date Played: March 22, 2019

Team size: up to 8; we recommend 3-5

Duration: 60 minutes

Price: $23.95 per player

Ticketing: Public

Emergency Exit Rating: [A+] No Lock Physical Restraints: [A+] No Physical Restraints

REA Reaction

Our group had a really good time in Investigation of a Miss Treedeath. We laughed. We puzzled. We made fun of our friend who did something really silly and broke the game requiring intervention from the gamemaster… and since then we’ve been spamming him with ridiculous postcards because we’re great friends and jerks in equal amounts.

In-game: The door to the room opening revealing a hallway for an apartment building.

Our antics aside, Escape STL produced a really good traditional escape room that came with a humorous twist. It didn’t look all that impressive from the photos because it was staged in an accurate yet mundane manner… which was emblematic of Investigation of a Miss Treedeath’s biggest issue: It needed to steer into its wackiness.

This could be a fantastic and memorable game if Escape STL leaned into the funnier side of the story that they produced. This game could… and probably should… be dark comedy with puzzles from beginning to end.

From a puzzle and game design standpoint, this was one of the stronger escape rooms that we played during our trip to St Louis. If that’s the kind of escape room play that you’re seeking, then give this one a shot.

Who is this for?

  • Puzzle lovers
  • Any experience level

Why play?

  • Tongue-in-cheek design
  • Solid puzzles
  • A humorous story

Story

We were rogue detectives investigating Miss Amanda Treedeath under suspicion of murder. We had to break into her apartment and see if we could dredge up some evidence of her suspected crimes.

In-game: an apartment building mailbox.

Setting

Investigation of a Miss Treedeath was an apartment escape game. We began in the apartment building’s hallway and then progressed into a rather convincing apartment dwelling.

It wasn’t an exciting environment by any stretch of the imagination, but it felt like what it was striving to be.

In-game: The hallway for an apartment building.

Gameplay

Escape STL’s Investigation of a Miss Treedeath was a standard escape room with a moderate level of difficulty.

Core gameplay revolved around searching and puzzling.

In-game: an advertisement offering a reward for a lost puppy.

Analysis

➕ Investigation of a Miss Treedeath put a humorous spin on a traditional escape room setup. Escape STL teed up the experience well with the tone in the lobby and the in-character gamemaster.

➕ By solving the puzzles, we developed a deeper sense of the character in whose apartment we spent our 60 minutes. This added depth to the game.

➕ The gameplay worked well. The puzzles solved cleanly.

➕/➖ Escape STL’s staging made the set feel especially… apartment-y. It was a convincing set, but there was nothing special, exciting, or enticing about having an adventure in… an apartment.

➕/➖ We enjoyed the playful tone of Investigation of a Miss Treedeath. Escape STL could lean into this more, especially in the staging, to up the intrigue of the apartment staging.

➖ There was opportunity for Escape STL to surprise players more dramatically than they did.

➕/➖ Escape STL gave each team a score. After we escaped within the allotted 60 minutes, they asked us investigative questions to determine our score. While we liked the tiered goals, we would have preferred the investigation questions be incorporated into the gameplay. Reporting our answers back made these solves feel tacked onto the experience.

Tips For Visiting

  • There is a parking lot.

Book your hour with Escape STL’s Investigation of a Miss Treedeath, and tell them that the Room Escape Artist sent you.

Disclosure: Escape STL provided media discounted tickets for this game.

Escape STL’s Investigation of a Miss Treedeath [Guest Reaction]

A guest post by Nick Moran, formerly of Time Run in London, England.

It’s March. I’m in St. Louis, ostensibly for a conference. (It’s Transworld’s Halloween and Attraction’s Show – have you been? If not, you should. It’s crazy. If you like skeletons and pumpkins, then Transworld is your bag: your giant, several hundred thousand square-foot bag).

In-game: an advertisement offering a reward for a lost puppy.

But, in actuality, I’m just a passenger on the Lisa and David train, which is pulling into countless escape game stops on a whistle stop tour of the area. It’s fun. It’s as if they know how to organize… trips… *cough* Have you booked your place in their New Orleans escape room tour?

The purple, gold, and blue Escape Immerse Explore New Orleans Logo

After a frantic few hours of playing, we pulled into Escape STL. They’re a little ways out from St. Louis, in a place called Maplewood. The area seems nice, from my limited exposure to it. They’re located near a Bottleworks and, according to Google Maps, something called the Salt Room, which I guess is pretty good news for condiment fans worldwide.

Right, the venue: the lobby is nice and clean, a plush basement in an office complex. We were early so loitered outside the entrance, peering into the office of the company opposite: a business that looked almost disturbingly and performatively normal. Seriously, take a look if you go. It’s weird. Soon, our snooping ended; we were seated around a long table, signing the usual forms and waiting, our anticipation growing.

In-game: The door to the room opening revealing a hallway for an apartment building.

On the wall there was a sign detailing how Escape STL’s games worked: a five-variable scoring system, which spits out a single figure as the team’s score. A clever idea. Our paperwork completed, a young lad in a great hat began our briefing, in character, of course.

We were investigating the apartment of a suspicious woman with an even more suspicious name: a Miss Treedeath. Murder was afoot. Perhaps even likely. Our objectives were manifold: primary, secondary, and tertiary. I respected the lad, the hat, and the objective structure. It made sense. We were primed.

Now, the name. It’s obviously a pun. You got that; I got that, but there’s a lot in what a name does. A name can set the tone of your experience and can give a hint of how you will and should play. (Did you know Lisa likes names?) And what does a name like a Miss Treedeath say to you? Well, to us it said… cheeky. Not frivolous and not stupid, but definitely mischievous.  And let’s be honest, after an afternoon of hectic stops around the St. Louis area, we were already in high spirits and the flamboyant intro had readied us further. We were prepared to play.

Games, at their best, are sandboxes that give space for players to be the most playful versions of themselves. On this particular metric, Investigation of a Miss Treedeath is an unqualified success. As we moved through the noir-tinged mystery, every little detail heightened our mood. The walls were littered with pictures of dead trees. The victims of the perpetrator were executed for imperceptible comic slights. The game had its tongue so firmly in its cheek that it was practically pushing bone.

In-game: an apartment building mailbox.

By the middle of our game we were on the verge of some sort of hysterical breakdown. When one of our teammates posted some postcards in a fit of pique, I thought I would explode. It was clearly a massive error, but still, the game laughed with us, not at us, despite our manifold failings.

By the time we won, Investigation of a Miss Treedeath was already a treasured escape room memory. It was a game that leaned in, hard, that was determined to ensure that players came out grinning. Certainly, it was the highlight of my trip to St. Louis and gets my firm stamp of approval.

Is Investigation of a Miss Treedeath the best game in world history? No.

Is it a really lively experience, one that gets all the fundamentals right and so much more? Definitely. If you’re in the area, check it out. I would. I mean, I did.

Book your hour with Escape STL’s Investigation of a Miss Treedeath, and tell them that Nick Moran sent you, on behalf of Room Escape Artist.

St. Louis City Museum [Reaction]

The finest immersive experience that we encountered in St. Louis wasn’t an escape room; it was City Museum.

I’m as shocked as I am thrilled that this place exists… and I can’t wait to tell you about it.

The exterior of the building, there are castles and airplanes connected by metal mesh bridges.

What is City Museum?

City Museum is an adventure playground for all ages.

City Museum was immersive entertainment unlike any other. Built in, around, and on top of a former 10-story shoe factory that spanned a city block, it was a playground, a museum, a collection of curiosities, an architectural marvel, and a memorable adventure. The place was 600,000 square feet. It was the brainchild of the artist Bob Cassilly, a classically trained sculptor.

The entrance beneath a massive series of strange structures to climb on.

What do you do in City Museum?

It was filled with slides, things to climb, stuff to traverse, and all sorts of beautiful oddities.

A jungle castle environment with metal tubes for climbing.

Some of the obstacles were elevated high up. Some of the spaces were confined and required crawling through narrow caves. Some of it was simply beautiful or interesting to look at.

Lisa crawling through the jaw of a great stone beast.

Everything – and I mean everything – was delightfully strange.

A strange pickle like sculpture in an art gallery.
Pickle Rick, is that you?

What did I do at City Museum?

After we went down the 10-story slide, I saw an interesting cavernous space. I wondered where it led. I slithered inside… down… around… and into a dimly lit sort of climbing area. In doing so, I completely lost track of David and our other travel companions.

Two 10 story spiral slides.
The dueling 10 story spiral slides.

Sometime later, I found my friends near a fish tank, near these bouncy-twirly things that you could bop around on forever without moving at all… because oddities.

David inside of a fish tank pretending to be a fish.

We visited on a beautiful March day when we could climb outside without jackets. We shimmied our way through meshed crawling spaces reaching off the building like giant tentacles. We climbed through an airplane (yes, a plane, suspended outside the building, just so) and out the other side. We looked down on crowds of people maneuvering through the spaces.

View from a metal climbing tube.

We happened upon a bar/ restaurant in the middle of the place and stopped for a quick refreshment.

A strange stage-like environment.

We uncovered different habitats to climb through, exhibits with unlikely artifacts, and slides of every shape and size. We got lost. We found ourselves in a place we’d already been, unsure exactly how that had happened.

David's legs as he crawls through a tube.

City Museum gives the gift of uninhibited exploration. It was a giant maze to get lost in and not really care where we ended up.

A cavern with a beast-like stairwell viewed through metal bars.

It was life-sized chutes and ladders… except without the moral overtones.

A wooden spiral staircase made from whole trees.

At one point David overheard a mother tell her children to “go have fun and take risks.”

Brendan and Theresa
Brendan and Theresa!

Take Risks

The thing that’s so remarkable about City Museum is that it doesn’t feel like any other amusement or playground that I’ve encountered in the United States.

A giant octopus stairwell.

It’s the kind of place that gives you the freedom to chose what spaces you want to climb or crawl into. It allows you to get a bit banged up… and that’s ok because each individual is in the driver’s seat of their own experience.

An airplane suspended in air, and a bus hanging off the roof of the building.

It never felt like a dangerous place… but it did invite me to take risks… and I loved that. I wish that there were more experiences like this.

A massive art deco sculpture of a man.

Who is this for?

  • Children… who aren’t afraid to challenge themselves.
  • Parents… who are able to give their children the freedom to explore and pick up a couple of bumps and bruises.
  • Adults… with a childlike glee and a bit of flexibility and stamina.
  • Friends… who like to explore together, but don’t mind getting separated here and there until divergent paths cross again.
  • Solos… who are looking for an individual adventure in a sea of people.
Lisa crawling out of the mouth of a stone beast.

Tips For Visiting

  • If you visit on a weekend, it will be crowded. Get there before it opens.
  • Wear athletic clothes and shoes. You will want unrestricted movement.
  • You will get sweaty and dirty.
  • Bring as little with you as possible. You’ll want to check your belongings and you pay by the item.
  • Keep your phone in a zippered pocket/ pouch.
  • Kneepads… bring kneepads or buy them in the gift shop.

If you visit City Museum, mail us a postcard. Even that mailbox is… well, it fits right in.