Photos courtesy of Destruction Room
"The number one thing people like to smash is printers," says Aaron Pope, the co-owner of Destruction Room, a destination place for folks who want to get their catharsis on.
Destruction Room opened last year, Coastal Virginia's first so-called "anger room." Housed in an otherwise nondescript, wooden-boarded room off of Shore Drive, next to Pope's Ebbing Tides SUP shop, this is a safe space to unleash total mayhem. While the proprietor doesn't like to play up this aspect too much—"I don't want to encourage people to have to destroy things for their wellbeing"—customers in online reviews swear that regular visits to the Room help them relieve stress.
Prices start at $5 for five minutes of smashing dinner plates and go all the way to a 30-minute session where you—and/or a friend or two—can destroy four electronics, two pieces of furniture and 30 glass items for $135. Destruction Room offers sledgehammers, baseball bats and hand sledges as tools to unleash the havoc, while sage is burned "to keep the energy right." A Bluetooth speaker is available so you can't blast some Vivaldi or Hatebreed while exacting revenge on jamboxes and kitchen wares.
Pope and his wife, Sarah, were inspired to set up this smash shop when their landscaping business, ALC Grounds Management, had a slew of leftover items from foreclosure clean-outs that couldn't be resold and needed to be flattened and recycled. "We take the metal to the scrap yard, and then we pay TFC recycling to properly process the rest at the waste-to-energy plant. We love breaking stuff, but we love the environment too."
People shouldn't expect to bring their own items in to the Room, however. "It was the one bit of advice my dad gave me when I thought about opening up," Pope explains. "A whole lot of people would be bringing in their ex-spouse's stuff and things like that." Still, Destruction Room will make exceptions for very special cases. "If that printer has been giving you hell for six years, yeah, yeah, of course we'll let you destroy that."
Destruction Room is located at 4425 Shore Drive #104, Virginia Beach. DestructionRoom.net.