Throwback 80s Weekday in LA: Free Karaoke in a Hidden Koreatown Speakeasy and Ready Player One

Getting in my Delorean time machine to go back to the future

Feeling nostalgic for the 1980’s? Kevin and I recently checked out two hot spots in Los Angeles re-creating the glory days. Or maybe just imagine the 80’s if you’re like our 20-year old assistants that miss about every throwback reference we have (and make us feel totally ancient!).

The wall of boomboxes at the 80s speakeasy Break Room 86. I’m pretty sure I had one of these growing up!

We’re always seeking out the newest experiences in Los Angeles. First stop — in Hollywood, to check out the free Ready Player One Challenge.

I picked up the book Ready Player One a few months back (much to Kevin’s surprise since I NEVER read sci-fi). But this book was much different than the dragon slaying and magic spell casting books you might expect in many of those science fiction tales. Ready Player One still has a lot of those magical elements — but combines a fast-paced story with a lot of my childhood memories set in the 1980s.

Holding up the book Ready Player One – Kevin was immersed literally! Reading the book in line as we waited to go inside the pop up exhibit in Hollywood.

The Maze, located in Hollywood and inspired by the Steven Spielberg film, is open daily from 11am – 11pm. Best of all? Admission is free!

Kevin steps inside the maze, located in a hidden door at the back of a parked van.

This experiential maze in the heart of Hollywood is designed after the world of OASIS, the digital world from the book, where we had to uncover three hidden keys. We waited in line for about 45 minutes, since we were standby (without advanced tickets). But the wait was well worth it.

Inside the stacks! The world recreated from the book where trailers are stacked up on top of each other.

This choose-your-own-adventure experience gives fans total control to enjoy and interact with interactive displays, nostalgic gaming stations, immersive in-world moments, live actors, authentic film props and a pop-up shop.

Inside the 80s club where you had to dance for your clue!

A 1980s Speakeasy Bar in Koreatown? Sign me up!

The secret loading dock entrance to get into the 80’s themed bar Break Room 86

After all this outdoor activity, we wanted a place to unwind. Later that night, we headed into the heart of Koreatown to a hidden speakeasy bar located behind the trendy Line Hotel. I first read about Break Room 86 last year and have been wanting to check it out ever since. The first challenge for Breakroom 86 is finding the entrance — located off an empty loading dock behind the hotel.

As you can see, it is PITCH DARK on the street near the loading dock entrance. You’d never just stumble across this bar that is for sure!

It was our own version of finding the secret gate of Ready Player One! Once you find the secret loading dock, you’re greeted by one of the staff who will take you back through the industrial hallways past breakrooms. And a vending machine that serves as a secret door to the bar. How awesome is that?

After walking through the industrial hallway, you’ll end up at a vending machine…that serves as the secret entrance!

Once inside, you’re transported back to the 1980s –with vintage tunes playing, bar menus in old VHS cases and cassette tapes lining the wall.

One of the drink menus on the bar – inside an old VHS case.

But our favorite part? The hidden karaoke room inside the telephone booth! If you go on a Tuesday – Thursday, it’s first come first sing! And there is no fee — 100% free! Talk about a deal! Though, we did order a few glasses of sparkling wine, so I guess it wasn’t totally free after all.

It’s more than just a phone booth – looks can be deceiving. Push the wall and you’ll find a hidden Karaoke room

Getting my singing on – you’ll find a lot of 80s tunes but also modern day songs.  And yeah, maybe I made the ill-fated choice of Frozen’s “Let it Go!” 

I imagine the place gets jam-packed on the weekends. But it was perfect the night we went (right when it opened on a Thursday night). The bar even has free vintage arcade games. I think we found our new hangout!

Kevin tries his skills at Pac-Man and we can almost hear my parents telling us that they’re going to send us the Pac-Man machine they have in the basement!

While the Ready Player One Experience is a temporary pop-up exhibit, Break Room 86 is a permanent fixture. But we recommend not waiting like we did. Don’t miss out on all this fun!

Throwback 80s Weekend in LA: Free Karaoke in a Hidden Koreatown Speakeasy and Ready Player One
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Throwback 80s Weekend in LA: Free Karaoke in a Hidden Koreatown Speakeasy and Ready Player One
Feeling nostalgic for the 1980's? Kevin and I recently checked out two hot spots in Los Angeles re-creating the glory days. Or maybe just imagine the 80's if you're like the 20-year old assistants we have that miss about every throwback reference we have (and making me feel totally ancient!).

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