A high-tech escape room is coming to Westland on Friday the 13th

A high-tech escape room is coming to Eloise Asylum in Westland on Friday, May 13. // Courtesy of Eloise Asylum

Eloise Asylum in Westland is set to become the site of Escape the Asylum, a state-of-the-art, high-tech escape room. The new adventure opens to the public on Friday, May 13.

Thrill seekers are invited inside to move through the rooms of the infamous asylum to uncover secrets, unravel a mystery, and solve clues for a fully immersive adventure experience in a truly haunted location.

The owners state that the live multi-room adventure is a Hollywood-level immersive experience. Players have 60 minutes to work together to uncover clues, solve puzzles, and complete tasks across multiple rooms, starting with a padded cell, before becoming the next victim of someone or something., who returned to the abandoned asylum.

To produce the months-long special effects that will surround visitors, Escape the Asylum relies on state-of-the-art special effects, lighting, and animatronics. Some of the entertainment industry’s top set designers, including those who have worked on complex, high-profile shows, such as Taylor Swift and Katy Perry’s world tours, were brought in to help create the experience. .

The team behind Escape the Asylum also uses advanced projection mapping technology to make everything around the visitor appear eerily real. Projection mapping technologies have been used and popularized by theme parks and attractions like Disney and Universal Studios, as well as the Immersive Van Gogh exhibit.

“Escape The Asylum is truly a next-level escape room,” says Matt Herzog, co-owner and operator of Escape the Asylum. It also transformed Eloise Asylum into a cutting-edge haunted attraction last fall. “Our goal is to make guests feel like they’re in a thriller movie, from the moment they enter the escape room to the moment they exit,” adds Herzog.

This is the first escape room at Eloise Asylum, and Herzog hopes to open another thriller-based escape room at Eloise before the end of the year.

Groups of 4 to 10 people can reserve a one-hour time slot via the Eloise Asylum website. The game requires at least three players to win. Tickets must be purchased online in advance.

Escape the Asylum is open from noon to 10:30 p.m. on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. Customers are encouraged to arrive 15 minutes before the time indicated on their ticket.

According to the operators, the Eloise asylum was the largest asylum in the United States and the first to perform lobotomies. The procedures were performed in the tunnels of the hospital’s vast grounds. After Eloise was closed, vials containing brain fragments from the lobotomies and general brain study were discovered in rooms adjacent to the tunnels.

The asylum originated in 1839 when Wayne County purchased 160 acres of land for $800 in what was then Nanking Township, later renamed Westland; the site was chosen because it was far from the city. There they built the Wayne County Hospice.

In 1894, the site was renamed Eloise, after the young daughter of a Detroit postmaster. In 1934, the population of “detainees” in Eloise was 8,300 people; about 50 percent of them were people with mental illness.

Eloise’s last patient left in 1979 and Eloise officially closed in 1981. Eloise Asylum is located at 30712 Michigan Ave.

About Bernice D. Brewer

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