Walk through New York City's Blood Manor in the dark, and you might have a heart attack. Explore it with the lights up and you'll see a series of simple tech tricks designed to scare the pants off you.
We got a look inside the haunted house last October with co-owner Jim Faro, who got his start in the 80s turning his Queens home into an elaborate spooky manor. Eventually a hobby turned into a full-fledged seasonal operation—one that does enough business from the beginning of October through the first weekend of November to lease the West Village space year-round.
So it's no surprise that Halloween revelers flock to Blood Manor in droves. But what is it that's actually giving them a fright? It's a series of simple puzzle pieces really: a bunch of animatronics triggered by pressure pads to make zombies pop out of nowhere; projectors that emit images of ghostly figures; creative lighting that disorients you differently in each room; actors made up to look like deranged doctors, butchers, werewolves, and a garden variety of ghouls; and of course, smoke machines and heaping doses of scary, scary sounds.
Alone, these spook-coutrements might raise a hair or two. But throw some simple tech together, add a smattering of fake blood and frightening flair, and Blood Manor becomes something truly terrifying.
Blood Manor is open Tuesday-Sunday from now until November 2
Video by Michael Hession