Fox in a Box Firenze: Florence Central Bank [Review]

logo_big_fox_florenceLocation: Fox in a Box Firenze, Historical Centre, Florence, Italy

Date completed: March 2016 (2 players). Succeeded escaping!

Creativity: 7.5;  Difficulty: 6.5; Atmosphere: 7.5; Fun: 9

Requirements:

  • Basic English or Italian
  • 2-6 players
  • Acute senses
  • Basic Geography

You and your band of rogues are informed about a ‘behind-the-curtains’ room in the Florence Central Bank. Its vault guards a deposit of beautiful, sparkling diamonds, and the only person with access to that room is stinky Mr. Pig. You manage to turn the alarm off for 60 minutes while he’s away. Will you go in and take those beauties to yourself? If you do, better do it right, because the police is right behind you!

Fox in a Box’s Florence Central Bank allows you to be the bad guy for one hour – better in a escape room than in reality, right? On the way, be prepared to disarm and unlock a lot of fun traps and tricks!

We were welcomed to Fox in a Box Florence by the lovely and very multilingual Jerome, who could talk to us not only in English or Italian, but also in his native French and also a little in Spanish. Think about a venue ready to cater for tourists! This is something common to most escape rooms we played around Italy and Spain (and according to word of mouth, most of Europe): multilingual gamemasters. We wish this was common everywhere in the world!

So, Jerome briefed us about the game, the rules, and let us enter the Florence Central Bank. Immediately, we realized that most of the areas of the escape room were visible from the start, but you cannot reach them all straight away. You will have to work your way to unlock the inner parts of this old fashioned bank office. One thing is for sure: this room looks much better in reality than on the Trip Advisor photos!

Mild search skills will be required, as well as dealing with a few mechanical tasks. There are a lot of association puzzles (yay, I like them! :D) and you better know basic Geography as well. If you are a traveler, you will probably be okay.

This room also included one of the most demanding teamwork tasks we’ve done. It was not hard to find out what to do, but it required full work of our four hands and eyes to get it done. Or maybe we just tackled it in the wrong way… Well, we solved it in the end! This room was challenging with only two players and can easily accommodate a team of 3-4.

diamond-miningcom
(Diamonds are everyone’s best friends 😀 / Photo: mining.com)

The Bank is very linear, but the flow and the pace of the game are very good. Only two puzzles requires language, and they can be solved both in English and Italian, which is very interesting!

We required one hint to go through, which came in the shape of a picture in an actual mailbox. If you need help, you press a button on the wall and your gamemaster will “post” some images you collect in the mail. No language is required and the images give you a very good idea of where you should focus. The gamemaster can also post hints if he thinks your team is stuck for too long.  We had a lot of fun and got out of the Florence Central Bank with our diamonds and a few minutes to spare!

I admit that I (Pá) did not initially expect much from Fox in a Box, as the themes did not attract me at first sight – we also played the Bunker, in which you have to prevent a nuclear holocaust. However, the rooms were really fun, service was very good and the props were all working.  Besides, the sets for both rooms were well decorated and the background story was light-hearted. It was a great surprise and worth a visit if you are in Florence!

The Bank is also playable at Fox in a Box Nice, France. The folks from Escape Room Tourism tried both Bunker and The Bank there. You can read the positive thoughts on their experience here.

Out of the room

Service: Our gamemaster Jerome was lovely and very enthusiastic about his job. He gave us good briefings in English  (we could have chosen among many other languages). The debriefings after the game were also thorough. He and his colleagues were very keen to talk about escape rooms and asked us about other rooms we had played in Italy and other countries. Very nice people.

There is a small reception area with a few seats. There are no lockers for personal belongings and you take your stuff into the room. Be careful of where you put them! I put mine under the “hint mail box” and one of the hints almost got lost inside my jacket!

Communication: You do not talk directly to the gamemaster during the game. If you need hints, you press a button on the wall and he will “post” a few pictures with image hints to a mailbox in the room. In exceptional cases, you will listen to him through the room sound system.

Surroundings: Fox in a Box Firenze is in Florence‘s historical centre, so there are many famous attractions to visit before/after your game. Jerome gave us an awesome recommendation for a restaurant located exactly across the road, Fuoco Matto, considered by many locals the best pizza in Florence. Have you ever lamented not having a second stomach? Everything we chose (appetizers, pizza, risotto, wine) was superb, to say the least. Do not miss this place. If it looks full when you arrive, don’t despair as the kitchen will prepare entrees and serve wine while you wait. You’ll have to pay for this of course however, it was so tasty and the restaurant charged pretty reasonable prices.

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