The most fun you’ll have behind bars!
Walking along Brighton seafront you’ll notice the pebble beach, the historic hotels, the famous Brighton Pier… but hidden below unsuspecting footsteps is a bar behind bars, Alcotraz Brighton.
A immersive prison, BYOB experience, if you haven’t been to a BYOB before, this means Bring Your Own Booze. These bars come in all shapes and sizes, some masquerade as speakeasies, then there’s others, like Alcotraz. You bring the booze, they make the drinks, and no alcohol is sold on site! Instead you pay a entry ticket fee for the experience and the genius mixologists to transform your simple liquor into wonderful cocktails.
A immersive experience that starts from the moment you arrive outside. The guards convict you upon entry, once convicted you are given your classic orange jumpsuit to put on, you are a prisoner after all! Luckily the jumpsuits fit over clothes, even dresses and skirts.
From the moment you first meet the guards you are immersed into a exciting, underground world with corrupt prison guards, a notorious bootlegging gang and of course.. the dreaded warden!
Once inside, we find out that the guards are, fortunately for us, CORRUPT and we are informed of how to smuggle in liquor to make unique, delicious cocktails! All designed and made using the spirits you brought in, by other ‘Inmates’ (bar staff in character, don‘t worry other customers arnt making your drinks!) There is no drinks menu, you are in jail after all, but you can say if you like sweet, sour, strong, weak… and every drink we enjoyed was different, strong and delicious.
Once convicted, ready in your prison jumpsuit and liquor hidden ready to smuggle in, you are escorted to your cell. The cells fit a fair size group, 7 of us were in 1 cell and it was absolutely fine. In your cell you find a fake toilet, for the real prison cell effect, and metal bench seats. Metal bars surrounding your cell and plenty of other cells for different groups which kept the atmosphere super lively and fun.
Throughout the evening the characters come to life… the corrupt guards and the feared warden! Telling tales of previous prisoners, bribery and corruption. Warning us of what would happen to us if we break to rules of the prison and how we will be it to work if we act up, and through the experience I found this out the hard way!
I was mopping, had to do push ups which it turns out, I AM TERRIBLE AT… and then we got our line up photos taken and allowed to take our ‘1 phone call’. This was probably one of my favourite moments of the whole experience to be honest!!
Each group are taken one by one to get their photos taken by the line up wall and where the prison phones were. The fact the groups are taken cell by cell means you can get all the photos you’d like uninterrupted and without wait. More time to drink in your cell!
Through the evening you are constantly entertained.
The storyline and characters are fun, engaging and interesting, you find yourself laughing the whole night while also being put to task.
I actually found it very freeing being in a orange jumpsuit HA… not caring if my outfit looked ok, it I looked fat or something was unflattering. I KNOW THATS NOT something which you may care about but for me it was part of the fun. Fancy dress is FUN… its a real immersive activity to do with friends or as a date night where you can laugh, make memories for a lifetime and everyone can feel super involved. Whether you are the quiet one who doesnt like to be too involved or someone who wants to get involved in everything! It’s perfect for the whole group.
I never thought I would be recommending my readers to go to jail but I really am! It’s a truly fun, unique experience which I guarantee you wont forget. There are 2 alcotraz locations – Brighton and London.
Thanks for checking this out and if you liked this one then you’ll LOVE my piece on Bottomless Brunch @ Ballie Ballerson!