'Unleashing your inner beast': Smash Avenue is Connecticut's first 'rage room'

The new business allows customers to smash and destroy anything from electronics to furniture to plumbing fixtures.

Smash Avenue in West Hartford allows customers to smash and destroy anything from electronics to furniture to plumbing fixtures. It began accepting customers on Nov. 5, 2020.

Smash Avenue in West Hartford allows customers to smash and destroy anything from electronics to furniture to plumbing fixtures. It began accepting customers on Nov. 5, 2020.

Contributed by Smash Avenue

Shaun Chambers designed his latest venture, Smash Avenue, with the idea that people can benefit from having a safe place to release pent-up emotions.

Since it began accepting customers on Nov. 5, the West Hartford business is already bringing in steady customer traffic to whack beer bottles, entertainment centers, electronics, furniture and even toilets at the unusual mental health entertainment venue, he said. Customers get to use their weapon of choice — whether it’s a hammer, crowbar, wrench or a shovel.

"Smash rooms," also known as "rage rooms" like this are a trend that has been popping up around the country. But Smash Avenue is the first in Connecticut.

“I saw it as a way to help people get rid of their pent-up stress and anxiety,” Chambers said. “I saw the value in it. There were no rage rooms in Connecticut and that intrigued me a lot.”

Chambers and his cousins Darryl and James Ross, also of Hartford, conceived the idea of creating a “rage room” that allows customers to smash whatever they want during joking conversations about anger management. It’s been a heady experience for Chambers, who owns Body Roc fitness labs in West Hartford and Avon. And it was a way to give his cousins their first taste of entrepreneurship.

“It’s so much fun,” the 38-year-old Hartford native said. “People come in and smash to their wedding song if they got divorced. They literally come out on fire; they are so happy. You can tell they are getting rid of something they didn’t want, and they are happy about it.”

Smash Avenue in West Hartford allows customers to smash and destroy anything from electronics to furniture to plumbing fixtures. It began accepting customers on Nov. 5, 2020.

Smash Avenue in West Hartford allows customers to smash and destroy anything from electronics to furniture to plumbing fixtures. It began accepting customers on Nov. 5, 2020.

Contributed by Smash Avenue

Up to four people in the same party can enter the smash room at once. All participants must be properly clothed with closed-toe shoes and preferably a “hoodie” sweatshirt. Each player is given a protective helmet, face shield and protective gloves. Sanitization and other precautions due to COVID-19 are being taken, Chambers said.

“You can laugh, cry, scream and just destroy the entire room,” Chambers said. “It’s a workout of 15 to 20 minutes of unleashing your inner beast, and you can do it to your favorite play list.”

The business located at 635 New Park Avenue, Suite 2C in West Hartford, Conn. Customers sign up online through Smash Avenue’s website for a time slot and package. Smash Avenue is open Thursday through Sunday. The packages range from $29.99 for 15 to 20 minutes to $95.99 for a longer period of time.