Saturday, 3 January 2015

Review of ParaPark Sydney - 9A Gateway theme

My group of friends (4 adults) checked out ParaPark Sydney in January 2015, not long after it had opened.  Parapark is a world-wide franchise and is known as the original escape hunt room operator (the original being based in Budapest).

The atmosphere there is very cool.  When you arrive, you sit down in a waiting room and are given instructions on the room, together with a torch, pencil, notepad and walkie talkie.     
Our group did the 9A Gateway theme.  They currently only have the one room but have plans to open additional rooms in the near future.  This room was the fourth escape room that my group had done in Sydney.  

First off, I'll say what I enjoyed most about ParaPark Sydney:

  • it was really well run - they utilised a combination of TV screens and walkie talkies for communicating while in the room.  This was really effective;
  • the theming was excellent - the music, sounds and props in the room were great (they were not too scary and I think they would be suitable for kids from say 9 or 10 years of age);
  • the quality and variety of puzzles and challenges in the room was also excellent - there was a great mixture of low and high tech puzzles and they used some elements that I have never seen used before by other escape room outfits.  The quality of the puzzles was also excellent - clearly many hours of work had been spent in designing and making the puzzles, which we appreciated; and
  • the owners of ParaPark Sydney were really enthusiastic about their business and they were really receptive to our feedback.

There was very little that we didn't enjoy about ParaPark Sydney!  We managed to escape in 38 minutes and 35 seconds, so the only criticism that I have is that it would have been nice if the room had a couple of extra puzzles/challenges (although I understand from the owners that we were the first team to escape 9A Gateway, so I appreciate that it is difficult to design a game length that suits all groups).  

All 4 people in our group really enjoyed ourselves.  We will certainly be back to try their next rooms when they open and I really recommend ParaPark Sydney to anyone who likes puzzles or challenges (and certainly to anyone who has tried and enjoyed an escape room hunt before)!

Where:                    2 / 119 Wicks Road Macquarie Park

Duration:                60 minutes

Themes:                 1 theme (although additional rooms are planned)

Cost:                       $100 per team (3 players or less) or $150 per team (4 to 5 players)                                      [Although watch out for coupons on their Facebook page]

Overall Rating:       4.5 out of 5 stars

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