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Poland’s escape room industry celebrates a decade of growth, overcoming challenges and garnering international acclaim. Discover the resilience behind its success.
In 2013, the first escape room in Poland was born, igniting an immediate boom in the country. What began as a niche form of entertainment driven by passionate enthusiasts who were both customers and creators of these immersive experiences, soon grew exponentially. In just five years, the industry expanded to over 1000 escape rooms across Poland, from major cities like Warsaw and Krakow to smaller towns and even tourist locations like museums and mines.
However, in January 2019, tragedy struck in a Koszalin escape room due to a gas cylinder explosion, leading to increased scrutiny and regulations. The industry faced extensive inspections, involving fire authorities, building regulators, police, and health inspectors. Customers started dwindling, and escape rooms were almost pushed into obscurity.
Despite the setbacks, the escape room industry persevered. Just as it began to recover, the COVID-19 pandemic hit, bringing unpredictable lockdowns and restrictions. Many businesses pivoted to online experiences, while others diversified by creating game scenarios for various companies. Through sheer determination, the industry survived and emerged stronger than ever.
Currently, the Polish escape room scene is thriving. In the second quarter of 2023 alone, 24 new escape rooms opened. Notably, Poland’s escape rooms consistently rank highly in international lists, with “Opuszczony Hotel” in Wrocław being ranked the 7th best escape room globally. Poland has six rooms in the top 100 globally, impressive given the worldwide total of around 50,000-60,000 escape rooms.
Escape rooms in Poland have evolved beyond entertainment. They now serve as venues for HR activities, competitions like ER Champ have gained global recognition, and they’re used for educational purposes in schools, universities, and museums. However, the most satisfying aspect for business owners is the renewed trust and enthusiasm from a diverse range of customers, including families, youth, adults, seniors, and school groups.