Escape room and virtual reality arcade relocates to downtown Visalia

Jermaine Johnson II

CleVR Escape to relocate unique escape room and virtual reality arcade combination from downtown Tulare to downtown Visalia

VISALIA – As one business closes in downtown Visalia, another one opens. CleVR Escape plans to relocate from their building in downtown Tulare to the former location of Brides ’n Maidens in downtown Visalia.

Last Monday, the city approved the building permits for CleVR Escape to open shop downtown. They decided to move from Tulare to take advantage of increased foot traffic at their new location.

“We’re very excited to be coming to Visalia, I think being a part of that vibrant Visalia area would be a good fit and give people something cool to do while they’re out,” CleVR Escape co-owner David McAllister said. “There’s nothing like it anywhere in the area.”

The business offers two forms of entertainment in one place: escape rooms and a virtual reality (VR) arcade. The idea of an escape room is for groups of two to 10 people to come in and solve a series of puzzles throughout the room to find a way to escape. Groups are usually given one hour to solve the puzzle and the focus is on team building. The recommended age is 12 years old and above.

The VR arcade consists of two stations where people play VR video games in groups of one to four using HTC Vive pro headsets and controllers. Customers can rent out a station for 30 minutes or one hour with over 50 games to choose from such as sports, shooter, racing, etc.

CleVR Escape first opened in Tulare in April 2018. They initially wanted to open in Visalia but could not find an ideal location at the time. Now that the new space is secured, they are focused on making major renovations to the building. That will likely take several months but they are hoping to open by mid-February or early March 2021. By that point, they are also hoping that Tulare County is out of the purple tier on the state’s COVID-19 monitoring list.

McAllister co-owns the business with his wife Katie. The couple grew up in Tulare and attended Tulare Western High School. David is now a math teacher at the high school while Katie is a dental hygienist in Visalia.

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