Bobby Lukic opened the Anger Management Rage Room five years ago in south Fort Myers, as rage rooms began to crop up across the country. Half a decade later, the trend appears to be here to stay, with Lukic exploring a new way to further improve his business model.
In a rage room, customers pay for the time to smash objects in a room, knowing they are wrecking it in a safe manner without having to clean up the mess.
Lukic is exploring adding a new element to his business—alcohol. He plans to relocate from the current spot at 9541 Cypress Lake Drive, Unit 6. He hopes to add bottled beer and wine to the mix with the idea of customers drinking after a rage room session, but not before.
Customers must sign wavers before participating, and safety measures are enforced, with helmets and visors, gloves and safety jackets required to participate.
The lobby is full of glasses, plates, ceramics and discarded televisions for smashing. Customers also are encouraged to bring their own items. Once in the room, there are a variety of tools that can be used for the destruction, such as hammers, mallets, golf clubs and metal rods.
“It’s a full-time job, just going out there and finding breakables,” Lukic said. “A lot of people think I just go through people’s trash. And I did that for a while. But one day, there was a baby’s diaper in there. And I’m gagging, holding my hand out of the car.”
Lukic decided never again to rummage through trash and garage sales. He said he buys most of his breakables from charity-affiliated thrift stores. He used to buy the bulk of his items from Goodwill, making it a win-win for both his business and the nonprofit organization.
These days, he buys most of his items from Teen Challenge Super Thrift, which donates proceeds to efforts battling addiction.
“It makes people feel better about that, giving to a charity,” Lukic said. “It helps the charity out. It helps us out. It’s taken off like crazy. You would have thought COVID would have killed my business. Instead, it took it off like crazy.”
Anger Management Rage Room hosts a lot of divorce parties, he said.
“We will get all their ex-husbands stuff, and get all of their stuff together,” Lukic said. As a video camera records, the customer will wreck the room and later post the video online, he said.
For more than a year, Lukic said he had a handshake agreement with Cooper’s Hawk Winery in Naples, which allowed him to pick up a steady stream of empty wine bottles weekly. Lukic hauled the bottles back to the rage room for future demolitions. When Cooper’s Hawk recently changed management, the handshake agreement ended, and the restaurant cut him out of the bottles.
Lukic said he drove 60 to 70 miles each week, yielding 30,000 to 40,000 bottles per year.
“If I open up my own bar, I can literally use my own trash in my own business,” Lukic said. “How many businesses can say that they are taking their trash and turning it into inventory?”
Prices at Anger Management Rage Room start at $40 per person for 30 minutes. Lukic said he encourages having corporate events there.
Lukic also has some competition with Just One of Those Dayz rage room, 1944 Winkler Ave. in Fort Myers.
Lauri Yakubov manages Lukic’s rage room, and said she’s looking forward to an eventual move and would double as the business’ bartender and host.
“First we have to find the right location,” Yakubov said. “Cement walls between our neighbors would be the best part. Something that has some soundproofing. But really just finding the right size place where we could have probably two rage rooms going at once with a nice living area and some beer and wine.”
Anyone age 12 and older can participate, she said.
“We get everybody,” she said. “I’ve seen grandkids coming with their grandparents. I have seen families, coworkers, date nights and a lot of birthday parties.
“It’s been fantastic, because when people come here, even if they are angry about something, they leave happy.”