Every time some uber-rich celebrity trashes a hotel room just because they can, it’s easy to chide their behavior. Destruction of private property is rarely a good idea, but on some level, most of us understand the impulse. We’d all feel a lot better after 10 Office Space-inspired (NSFW) minutes with a baseball bat and a fax machine. If you’re looking for that healthier — or, at least, safer, cheaper, and legal — outlet to vent your rage, there’s probably a destruction room near you.
They go by many names, including “rage rooms,” “rage cages,” “smash rooms,” and “wreck rooms.” New York City’s The Rage Cage keeps it classy by billing itself as a “destruction services provider.” The popular Hell’s Kitchen spot is typical of most such rooms around the country. The concept is simple: Customers first book a time slot, typically 20-30 minutes. On arrival, they’re outfitted with a blunt instrument (usually a baseball bat, crowbar, or bowling pin) and safety equipment such as Tyvek suits, work gloves, helmets, and goggles (Geto Boys soundtrack not included). They’re then ushered to a private room to smash a variety of breakable objects to their heart’s content. It’s part cardio workout, part psychotherapy, and part just plain fun.
Most customers opt for an entry-level package. At The Rage Cage, the one-person Solo Smasher is priced at $45. This includes 20 minutes of smashing five plates and one “premium electronic” like a printer, computer monitor, or game console. Four-person packages start at $135, while the flagship $225 RAGEaholics PLUS! package accommodates up to six people with 30 plates, four premium electronics, and four smaller electronics like keyboards, speakers, and office phones. Every package includes the necessary safety equipment, changing rooms with lockers, and a selection of weapons. Add-on items are typically available with fancier rage rooms in places like Vegas offering big-screen TVs, guitars, and garden gnomes. Once they’re finished, customers walk out and leave clean-up of the aftermath to the rage room staff.
Rage rooms have been around for more than a decade in most major U.S. urban hubs. Only in recent years have they expanded into smaller cities like Tulsa, Oklahoma, and Chattanooga, Tennessee. It seems our need to vent through violence knows no geographic bounds.
If you’d rather balance your rage with a dose of namaste, rage yoga might be more your speed.
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