On The Brown Low: Escape Rhode Island

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Welcome to On the Brown Low—a column dedicated to exploring all that the lovely city of Providence has to offer. Join me, Isabela Karibjanian, as I take you on a tour of all the hidden gems I find off College Hill!

At the height of midterm season when it’s a cold and rainy Sunday afternoon, sometimes you just need to escape. Some choose to watch an episode or two of their favorite show on Netflix, while others choose to take a nap. Last Sunday, a group of friends and I decided to escape, but instead of taking the traditional route, we chose to visit Escape Rhode Island. Curious about how we escaped a locked art gallery and solved a mystery? Keep reading after the jump!

Though deciding to be voluntarily locked in a room with only an hour to complete a series of complex puzzles to escape may not sound like the most relaxing study break, the hour flew by. Growing up, I was an avid reader of Nancy Drew and Sherlock Holmes books, so finding clues and hidden keys at Escape Rhode Island was right up my alley. I felt totally immersed in the story of the missing artist that I didn’t once think of my midterms.

Tasked with investigating the disappearance of a local artist and RISD grad in an art gallery, our team of six tore apart the rooms within the game, looking for keys and the answers to riddles. There was never a dull moment during the hour we spent putting our amateur detective skills to the test, though there were some moments of desperation and panic that we would never get out. With less than two minutes left on the clock, we finally unlocked the exit—and found our way onto Escape Rhode Island’s weekly leader board!

The Gallery puzzle that we completed is not the only adventure in store at Escape Rhode Island. The facility has three other rooms, each with a detailed storyline and unique challenges for groups of various sizes. All of the rooms have an escape rate of less than 25%, and solving the riddles proved to be challenging even for puzzle-lovers like my friends. Though I can’t give away anything about what the actual gameplay entailed (that would ruin the fun!), I can say that I definitely plan on going back.

Like other Escape Rooms throughout the country, the location of Escape Rhode Island is not obvious—I’ve walked down South Main Street countless times without ever realizing that it existed. Providence is home to so many hidden gems like Escape Rhode Island, whether they’re vintage shops only accessible from a-not-so-obvious staircase or hole-in-the-wall restaurants that serve the best brunch. Hopefully, through this blog, you’ll be able to find out more about the hidden gems that I think make Providence so special.

By escaping College Hill, I found that I was able to return to my mountains of reading energized and with a new mindset, and I could brag that I had solved a missing person case. All in a day’s work for this Nancy Drew wannabe.

Is there something in Providence that you want to see covered here? Have any suggestions for my next adventure? Send me an email (isabela_karibjanian@brown.edu) to let me know!

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