Activities, Explore Your City, Offbeat, Reviews, Things To Do

Do You Have What it Takes to be Riyadh’s New Sherlock?

Profile photo of Jou Pabalate

Jou Pabalate

Regional Editorial Manager at Destination Riyadh

Photo Credits: Escape Arabia Photo Credits: Escape Arabia

You’re a scientist keen to uncover an alien conspiracy, Watson trying to crack into Sherlock’s mind, a rogue police officer attempting to save your buddy from a faceless captor. Look around you, what do you see? In here, nothing is what it seems.

The question is, do you have what it takes to solve the mystery— how long will it take before you yell: HINT!

The latest addition to the escape rooms popping up in the city, Escape Arabia raises the bar to a whole ‘nother level by offering not just one but multiple rooms in its Oruba St. headquarters.


At Destination, we love us a good game— and our competitive streak means we have a soft spot for places that give us a run for our money by providing a truly immersive and challenging experience. We’re happy to say that Escape Arabia, particularly the Area 51 room managed to get our adrenaline pumping and neurons firing.

The website is pretty easy to navigate and once you come in, you’ll be guided through the entire booking process. They also have packages for companies interested in using their venue for a unique team building activity. We recommend going with a friend, maximum of five people per room. Expect your noodles sharpened and obviously, bring someone you can last a good hour in an enclosed space with.


For those of you who have never paid to get willingly locked up in a room, trust us when we say you should. Escape Arabia is a franchise and offers different difficulty levels for newbies and veteran “escape” artists.

For first timers, the recommended room is Taken. It’s a good introduction to the whole entertainment concept, plus, the interactive setup is perfect for groups (you’ll find out why when you try it).

Now it seems to be a requisite to have a room on 221 Baker St in order to call yourself a proper escape room establishment. I mean after all, Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson are the standard bearers for mystery solving the world over. At Escape Arabia, you’ll find yourself going toe to toe (at least mentally) with Sherlock’s arch nemesis Professor Moriarty.

We do have a penchant for conspiracy theories and UFOs, hence, we just had to go for the supposed toughest room —AREA 51. And y’all, it did not disappoint. We loved how immersive the experience was and the fact that we got to work with all our senses (tinge of a spoiler tip there), was just amazing.

There’s a time limit for all of the rooms, you have an hour to an hour and a half to solve your way out. There are clues to help you get there and if you feel stuck at any given point, worry not, the hosts will pepper you with hints. Admittedly, we started out with the idea of never asking for any but decided to be more realistic and just aim for minimal voiceover and on-screen supervision.

Okay, we’ve got to stop before we start spilling the beans and spoiling the fun, so seriously, just book a room and try it out yourselves.

Website: escape-arabia


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