Adventure Rooms Cardiff's Managing Director has gone from cuffing criminals to locking up game players in his first year of business on Newport Road.
The popular franchise, which is the first of its kind in Britain, is run by Keiran Brooks, a former Detective Constable with the Gwent Police, who is now trying his hand at an entirely different brand of imprisonment.
After serving 14 years in the force, Keiran decided to hang up his handcuffs and begin his own business venture with his wife, Michelle, in the shape of Adventure Rooms, Cardiff.
Now celebrating its first successful year in business, the Swiss-designed franchise has proved hugely popular and the team at Adventure Rooms are thrilled with the reception the games have received so far.
“It is rather ironic that I've gone from handcuffing criminals to handcuffing people for fun, but the feedback we've received since opening has been amazing.
“We couldn't be happier with the warm reception we've had, and from such a wide range of customers. Our rooms have been popular with tourists, families, stag and hen dos and students but we've found that it's also really great for corporate days out and team building.”
Former DC Keiran bought the Cardiff franchise after visiting one whilst on holiday in Spain. The whole family loved the concept and so they decided to take the leap and consider setting up an Adventure Room in Cardiff. They haven't looked back since.
Keiran set up the Mad Scientist and The Black Queen games at the Newport Road base, and he has been putting his policing skills to good use as the keeper of the keys in Cardiff's most challenging escape rooms.
The team at Adventure Rooms believe that it's their unique duel format that makes them a popular choice for office outings and team building, which is something entirely new for Cardiff.
“Escape games usually host up to six or seven people at a time, but the duel format allows teams of up to 14 players go head to head with one another to see who can escape the fastest. It's a fresh approach to the escape-world, and it's really bringing in some new crowds, which we love.”
“We're looking forward to another great year and we have some exciting things in the pipeline for the next 12 months, so we really wanted our customers to be able to share in the celebrations with us and try out the games before we bring in some fresh, new challenges.”
The team at Adventure Rooms will be celebrating their first anniversary by awarding prizes, free games and discounts to their customers throughout the month of June, as a way of saying thank you for the overwhelming support they've received so far.
Anybody who escapes from one of Keiran's rooms throughout June will be in with the chance to win a prize, including free games for up to four people at the end of their visit.
Although Adventure Rooms are very common internationally, with franchises in Switzerland, Spain and New Zealand among many others, the Cardiff branch is the first to be opened in the UK.
Originally the creation of physics master Gabriel Palacios in Bern, Switzerland, its main influences were adventure computer games from the 1990s and scientific experiments. The Cardiff branch has paid homage to this by running the popular Mad Scientist room since its opening, a game that sees you trapped in the laboratory of a deranged scientist with just 60 minutes to escape. The games are suitable for anyone aged eight-80, but the most successful teams are those that have players with a variety of experiences, skills, background knowledge, and physical abilities.