Sleuthing and Scavenger Hunts: Inside Museum Hack’s “Escape the Met” Experience

Carly Syms - Team Lead for Marketing & VIP Customer Service

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What do you get when you combine the thrill of an Escape Room with the energy of a Museum Hack tour at the Metropolitan Museum of Art?

A whirlwind, narrative-based, team building puzzle we call Escape the Met!

What’s an Escape Room?

For the uninitiated, Escape Rooms are a phenomenon that have taken the “escape the room” genre of video games and put the experience into a physical location.

These rooms are filled with clues and elements that guests must utilize in order to “escape” in a certain amount of time; you’re not actually locked in, but it feels like it! Around the country (and around the world!), Escape Rooms have become a popular team building exercise!

Guests use pieces of “evidence” like these postcards to solve puzzles.
Guests use pieces of “evidence” like these postcards to solve puzzles.

What’s Escape the Met?

Our Escape the Met experience — designed by tour guide Jen Browne — is Museum Hack’s approach to the Escape Room concept, expertly paired with a dash of detective work.

While we can’t actually lock our guests inside a gallery at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, we sure can present a good sleuthing story!

Guests are tasked with helping the Lead Detective (their Museum Hack guide) prevent an “art heist.” Cousins Marchesa and Mateo — members of the renowned (fictional) Marillo crime family — are art thieves and forgers that have set their sights on the Met’s collection, and it’s up to your team to stop them.

How is Escape the Met different from traditional Escape Rooms?

A large part of the Escape Room experience is the expectancy of losing, but for our Escape the Met game, the goal is for everyone to win. We want our guests to work together as a team and solve puzzles — and have a great time doing it!

While many Escape Rooms are designed after settings like prison cells, spacecrafts, castles, and tombs, our game actually takes place in a real museum. Guests on our Escape the Met experiences have the added bonus of getting to engage with awesome art in one of the greatest museums in the world.

How does the experience work?

Every member of the team has an important role to play. They’ll be divided into one of five different detective roles:

  • Operations Specialist
  • Crime Scene Photographer
  • Communications Op
  • Crime Scene Chief
  • Evidence Officer

Each of these roles has specific responsibilities that no one else can do. Working together is key in helping the team stop the art thieves!

The game is split into separate puzzles that the team must work together to solve using multi-sensory clues like photos and voicemail conversations between the criminals.

How is Escape the Met different from Museum Hack’s other team building tours?

Clues used to help stop fictional art thieves in our Escape the Met game.
Clues used to help stop fictional art thieves in our Escape the Met game.

Our Escape the Met experience is a little more intensive than our regular team building tours.

While traditional scavenger hunts are open to creative interpretation, Escape the Met has guests searching galleries for specific clues in order to solve puzzles within a narrative.

Succeeding with your team in games like this drives bonds and creates an excited energy, encouraging the team to work together to see whose skill sets work best for certain tasks.

Check out what guests on one of our first Escape the Met experiences had to say about their experience!

“Museum Hack absolutely went beyond our expectations. We had an absolute blast…we’re team built now!” 

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