If 32-year-old Hungarian native Akos Gabossy succeeds in building the biggest franchise of escape rooms in the United States, he will have Chuck E. Cheese’s to thank for it.
For the uninitiated, escape rooms are a form of entertainment in which a group of people, usually four or five friends, have to solve a series of puzzles and find hidden clues that lead them to the key that allows them to escape a room or series of rooms.
Gabossy explains that escape rooms generally borrow themes from blockbuster movies, with zombies and pirates being particularly popular. Think of it as a tiny piece of Disneyland that you have to find your way out of in an hour or less.
What’s Gabossy’s connection to Chuck E. Cheese’s? Gabossy was a 17-year-old transfer student in Los Angeles when his host parents took him to the Texas-based franchise that combines entertainment with pizza for kids
“I was completely inspired by that place, “ Gabossy says.
So inspired that when he returned to Hungary and finished his university education, he landed a job in a bank, where he connected with investors who backed a series of amusement and entertainment projects Gabossy spearheaded.