About Us

How this all started, how we're doing, and where we're going!
Early 2016
Early 2016

I know this sounds cliched, but...

Clue IQ started out as the dream of a passionate lover of escape rooms to craft an escape room experience of his own.

I was caught up in the escape room fever the moment I stepped into my first escape room. The combination of a movie-style plot and real-life puzzles in an interactive game really got me hooked.

There was just one thing. Frederick, our home for over 20 years, lacked this kind of entertainment.

Mid 2016
Mid 2016

And so, back in the summer of 2016...

I started Project Clue IQ with my furry best friend Cora. Apart from my passion for escape rooms, I also wanted to be an entrepreneur, and this was my chance.

I started researching escape rooms as a business proposition, brainstorming stuff like game concepts and puzzle ideas, and trying to come up with a business plan.

Early 2017
Early 2017

Our first challenge was...

Finding a location.

We needed a downtown location. AND we needed it to be a location where we could custom-build our escape experiences – which involves major construction work.

Frederick has a number of beautiful, old buildings, but you can’t do construction work in them.

In early 2017, we finally found a suitable site. A grocer warehouse from the late 1870’s at 103 S. Carroll St. By March, construction began.

Mid 2017
Mid 2017

I have to say, I was lucky that...

Entrepreneurship runs in the family. Our family operates 5 unique businesses in downtown Frederick, and were only too happy to help me grow mine.

My uncle, Jim, helped with the construction. Mike (my dad) and his wife Terri supported me throughout.

Late 2017
Late 2017

Considerable careful planning and construction later...

We were ready.

As you can see, we kept most of the unique features (like the facade) of our building intact…

While transforming it into a space that would allow for major innovative construction work, to create various immersive, engaging and thrilling game environments I had in mind.

2018
2018

The rest, as they say, is history.

Thousands of people booked our rooms for the first time, enjoyed themselves thoroughly, gave us rave reviews on TripAdvisor, and came back for more games.

We hit #1 in Frederick after being open only 2 months. We’re also the the #2 overall fun activity on TripAdvisor.

In addition to retail bookings, lots of businesses keep bookings team building events with us!

Present day...
Present day...

Looking ahead...

We plan to keep innovating, and offering new escape room experiences. We’ve already retired two of our escape rooms to make way for new ones.

We’ve brought new outdoor adventures that are the first of their kind on the East Coast. We’ve created a physical “Play At Home” experience that’s a lot more engaging than the “cut-out” option offered by most escape rooms.

The pandemic was a hit to us, like it was to every other small business, but we’ve bounced back…and we’re continuing to explore new scenarios and new experiences to offer to you!