A mystery can go either way – it can turn out to be a good thing or a bad thing. But for couples Chuck and Marge Chang and Kimbee and Errol Magdato, mysteries are something to get excited about. They’ve been a fan of mysteries from books, movies, and even games. That’s why when they learned about Room Escape games, a recent trend from Japan, they aimed to be the first ones to bring it to the Philippines for fellow Filipinos to enjoy.
Favorite movies and books were mostly the owners’ inspirations for creating their own mysteries for Mystery Manila. Those include Sherlock, Indiana Jones, James Bond, Star Wars, Harry Potter, Saw, Conjuring, and Paranormal Activity. But being inspired alone wouldn’t make their vision possible, so they’ve undergone several brainstorming activities, conceptualizing the rooms’ design; balanced the challenge and fun in each game; and decided for the rules of the game itself.
Finally in 2014, the owners opened their very first branch in Libis, Quezon City. Their business was warmly welcomed by the public. They accepted feedback in their pilot year and later on, they pushed through with the expansion of Mystery Manila. Through this, they can also serve more customers who love mystery games. The Jupiter branch in Makati City opened in the same year. A year after, the Century City Mall branch welcomed the public; and the latest one was the opening of Ayala Malls The 30th in Pasig City last January 2017.
The Latest Wizarding World of the 30th
At the Ayala Malls The 30th, the Mystery Manila team had us try their very own Sorcerer’s Stone, a mystery that is based on the Harry Potter book/films. We started by wearing the Hogwarts robe of Mystery Manila that truly made us feel like wizards even just for an hour! The mystery must be solved as soon as the time starts. In case help is needed, you can wave at the camera to ask questions; for every answered question, 5 minutes will be added to the total game time. Everything inside the room may lead to a clue which piques everyone’s curiosity and adds excitement to the game.
The Mystery Manila Experience
Because of the hard work of the owners, Mystery Manila became what it is today. They’re mostly fully booked each day, especially during Fridays to Sundays. The number of escape rooms is still increasing. The rooms may change every 6-8 months, but old rooms can be brought back every now and then depending on the season. They have even developed games for the family especially for kids who love solving mysteries, and a Card Game has become available as well.
What makes Mystery Manila unique is the experience that they will offer you. Each of their games is immersive and has a unique concept. They also challenge you to think outside the box in order to look for hard-to-find clues. A group’s communication and coordination skills can also become stronger through this game, which is why it’s perfect as a team building activity. So if you’re looking for a fun adventure game that will help you make use of your thinking skills, Mystery Manila is a must-visit for you.
Libis, Quezon City
Unit 9A, JW Plaza Building, 195 E. Rodriguez Jr Ave.
(also known as C5, right across the street from the entrance of Eastwood, quezon)
Brgy. Bagumbayan, 1110 Quezon City, Metro Manila, Philippines.
(0917) 582 0808 or (+632) 501 2824
Century City Mall
Unit L305 3rd Floor Century City Mall,
Kalayaan Ave. cor. Salamanca St, Brgy. Poblacion,
1210 Makati City , Philippines
(0917) 820 6469 or (+632) 718 9251
Jupiter, Makati City
2nd floor, G. A. Yupangco Building,
Jupiter St. and Gil Puyat Avenue corner Reposo St.,
Brgy. Bel Air, 1200 Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines.
(Landmark: Starbucks right across Mapua Makati & SM Jazz)
(0917) 559 4010 or (+632) 587 1689
Ayala Malls The 30th
3rd Floor Ayala Malls The 30th,
Meralco Avenue, Ortigas Center, Brgy. Ugong,
1604 Pasig City , Philippines
(0917) 823 2155 or (+632) 621 0732
Written by Nonalie Doblon and Danica Palmones
Photography by Kate Austria and Hazel Marie Bien