King of the Bootleggers

8.4 Overall
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King of the Bootleggers

  • Played May 2018
  • Toronto

  • 60 minutes
  • up to 20 players
  • $40 (general) / $46 (prime time)

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Have you ever wanted to be transported back in time to the roaring 20s and experience the exciting world of moonshine and prohibition? Look no further than the King of the Bootleggers escape room. This cleverly designed room is one of three experiences offered at the iconic Toronto landmark, Casa Loma. The entire ERA team agreed that this escape room truly is the ‘King’ – it’s entertaining, interactive, and the most fun of all the rooms in the series.

An escape room adventure is a great excuse to visit the stunning castle in midtown Toronto. Their seasonal gardens are beautifully maintained and picturesque for that perfect selfie! Parking is free after 5pm, just let them know you are there for the escape room. The entrance is located to the left of the main doors but it can easily be overlooked. There is a small Casa Loma Escape Series sign that marks the spot. If the door is locked you’ll just need to be buzzed in, and then follow the stairs down a hallway to the lobby. This area is decorated with posters of movies that have been filmed at Casa Loma and there’s a screen playing some of the scenes. The check in area doesn’t have much for entertainment or food but I highly recommend visiting their newly renovated washrooms. I truly felt like royalty when I walked in to the marble detailed room with private stalls. Very regal!

The staff are always very pleasant and genuinely excited to talk about the games that Secret City Adventures have to offer at Casa Loma and their other locations. Once it was time to start our adventure we were gathered into the theatre which was originally built as a pool. We began to watch the intro video. Unfortunately there were some technical difficulties and the video was cut short and we were led to begin the game with the first character of the night – Charlie. Hopefully the video malfunction was just an isolated incident.

We were led through the underground tunnels of the castle, which immediately makes you feel immersed in the game; Charlie’s comical banter really made us believe he was taking us to a secret underground location. A pro-tip, if you are planning on experiencing KOTB, we suggest to wear close-toed shoes since there is a lot of moisture in the tunnels and we were walking through puddles. Once we entered the multiple rooms we were immediately impressed with the staging; the ambiance is authentic and you really feel like you are in a distillery, a bar, a library and a study. All the props were real and added to the overall storyline including creepy taxidermy creatures and authentic old bound books. We noticed that the top floor got a little warm, so if you are planning on heading there during the spring or summer and you happen to be sensitive to warmer temperatures I would recommend volunteering for one of the two lower level rooms.

Charlie introduced us to three other characters who all had distinctive roles and really added a theatrical element to the experience. The actors were interactive not only with each other but with our team. They would remember our personal names and details like where we were from. The actors were really good at persuading people or leading them to aspects of the puzzles that needed to be solved. One thing that we really liked was that there was no time for standing around waiting for others to solve a puzzle, as there were plenty of activities to keep everyone entertained for the entire game. The puzzles were varied and thematic; no two were alike, which made it exciting to see how all of them came together to solve the task at hand.

Without giving too much away, the climax of the whole experience was so entertaining to be part of and to witness. It is cleverly crafted so all the characters are pointing fingers at each other and it was hilarious to watch it all unfold. The fun factor was at an ultimate high for this showdown performance.

A whodunit mystery, sly characters, and authentically decorated rooms all come together to perfectly round out the King of Bootleggers. I highly recommend checking out this entertaining and beyond fun escape room. Without a doubt it is one of my personal favourites. Now go dust off your crowns and get bootleggin’!

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