For the Jordan family, a simple little vacation away from their home began an adventure of another kind.

“We came across this unique real-life gaming experience that allowed us to participate as a family,” said Michelle Jordan. “All of us had to put down our tablets and cell phones and had to participate as a team in solving this fun challenge.”

Both Michelle, her husband, Howard, and their two boys, Howie and Josh, had to work together to solve a predetermined challenge by using clues and ultimately escape the room.

“We really enjoyed ourselves and then thought this might be fun thing to offer on Marco Island,” said Howard Jordan, a Marco resident who is a financial planner in Naples.

“I also wanted it to be a learning experience for our sons in how to run a business.”

The result: the Xtreme Escape Game at 909 N. Collier Blvd.

The idea of a problem-solving reality challenge first began in Europe and Asia and has made its way to the United States. The Jordans’ venture is the first of its type in Southwest Florida.

Michelle Jordan designed the entire venue from the ground up.

“The interiors of the rooms are completely her vision and she’s done a great job,” said Howard.

At present, there are two game rooms with more to come. The first reality game involves players being arrested for a crime and placed into a jail cell, which Michelle has been creative in designing.

“The object of the game is to uncover clues that are found within the cell that will help to prove your innocence,” said Michelle.

“We monitor each room by video and we can add additional clues if necessary, but you’d be surprised how many folks fail to escape the rooms. The more clues you ask for beyond the first three will deduct from your time to solve the challenge.

“We failed the first couple of times when we were in Tennessee,” said Howard. “It just made us try harder the next time.”

There is no age restriction on the game; families, co-workers, groups of friends, visitors to the island and even a couple on a date night are all welcome to play. Companies may even want to sponsor challenge nights for their employees, since it encourages team building, they said.

The experience lasts for one hour, and, according to the Jordans, less than 40 percent of those playing the Cell Block M experience manage to escape the room and prove their innocence.

The second room in addition the Cell Block M, Calico Jack’s Lost Treasure, will open the day after Thanksgiving.

The goal there will be to try and find the long, lost treasure of the pirate known as Calico Jack, who actually did at one time sail in the Marco area. It has long been rumored that he buried a treasure on the island, so the historical theme was especially of interest to the Jordan family.

More information

Learn more about the new business on Marco Island, visit or call 239-272-3090.

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