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Savvy January 2011

Unique, affordable venues in Chicago?

nkuch4, on February 16, 2011 at 11:55 AM Posted in Planning 0 15
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Hi all,

My sister just got engaged and since I just planned my wedding I want to help her with hers! They haven't set a date or a budget. I did my entire wedding for aroun 10k and I'm sure she would like to do that too. I know they don't want cookie cutter reception--has anyone had success finding venues that are cool? Most of the museums or historic sites are crazy expensive that I've found...6K just to rent the space...that's not doable for her!

Thanks!

15 Comments

  • Hayley C™
    Master March 2008
    Hayley C™ ·
    • Flag

    How big of a wedding? In chicago or surrounding suburbs good?

    • Reply
  • Hayley C™
    Master March 2008
    Hayley C™ ·
    • Flag

    Http://www.chicagostyleweddings.com/

    check out this site.. you can search for venues, see pictures, search by size, budget... good luck, have fun!

    If it is not too big of a wedding, check out Al Capone's hideaway in Saint Charles

    The upstairs is a beautiful place to rent out, and the food is DELICIOUS!!! I had my rehearsal dinner there, and people still talk about the food.

    http://www.al-capone.com/steakhouse/index.html

    • Reply
  • KittenPurrFace
    Super June 2011
    KittenPurrFace ·
    • Flag

    I am getting married at the Redfield Estate at the Grove in Glenview. It is gorgeous, and if you do a weekday, super cheap.

    Maxim's in Chicago is not cheap, but super unique and Moulin Rouge-y.

    • Reply
  • N
    Savvy January 2011
    nkuch4 ·
    • Flag

    Not sure how big yet, maybe 200ish and I think they are really trying to stay downtown. Saw Maxim's when searching earlier...looks cool! Thanks Hayley, will check out those links!

    • Reply
  • Future KH
    VIP October 2011
    Future KH ·
    • Flag

    Does she need to be in Chicago? For 200 people, it will be very hard to do something for less than $10k in the city. But Joliet is very close and there are a few great spots there (Haley mansion, I think there is an old rail road station that is unique).

    • Reply
  • Mary
    Super July 2011
    Mary ·
    • Flag

    I'm thinking that's going to be VERY hard to do or else be a very minimal reception. Would a public park (not a venue or anything, just a random park) be acceptable?

    Taxes and tip alone on food are usually 26% (minimum) in Chicago, which might leave out a lot of venues...

    Sorry to be a Debbie Downer.

    • Reply
  • Katterina
    VIP June 2011
    Katterina ·
    • Flag

    A downtown wedding is going to be kind of hard to do for 10k. I know, I tried!! (lol) We're actually having ours at Seven Bridges Golf Club in Woodridge. Absolutely beautiful and waay more reasonable.

    • Reply
  • Mary
    Super July 2011
    Mary ·
    • Flag

    Here's the Parks Department events page: http://www.cpdit01.com/resources/permits.special-event-venues/

    There are some parks that are reasonable, but then you need to factor in caterers, labor, security, insurance...

    • Reply
  • Jillian
    Expert August 2011
    Jillian ·
    • Flag

    I looked at a total of nine venues in the downtown area and you won't be able to find any place under $75/person. That doesn't include between 20-22% gratuity on top of another 13.75% Chicago tax - YES, 13.75%! Believe me, it should be a crime...

    Hotel Monaco is a cute boutique hotel that can hold 200 (I think). Mitchell Ray is the wedding coordinator and we met with him when we were deciding (we went with The Sax Hotel instead - just because we like it more). Their cheapest package is $100/person. We are getting married at the Sax Hotel (old House of Blues Hotel), which is fantastic and completely different - like you've never seen Smiley smile They can only hold 160, though.

    • Reply
  • B
    Devoted June 2013
    Becca ·
    • Flag

    I had the same problem that you're finding for your sister's wedding, as Chicago was where I had my heart set on getting married (majority of family is from there). I almost considered using Michael's Red Hots in Highland Park and trying to do something more upscale than Hot Dogs there, although they wanted a pretty hefty price for it. That's why we've moved ours to NYC instead of Chicago and doing ours in Central Park where there's only a $25 fee for securing spots for 100 guests and having a photographer, and using the Carnegie Deli so we can make our PP limit on the lower side. I don't know if Millenium Park may work out there with her budget. If I remember correctly seeing a lot of very picturesque spots throughout that park that could work well. I'm pretty sure some caterers if she goes for a picnic lunch or dinner in the park kind of reception could help with the food budget part. I also don't know how expensive Harry Carray's may be, that's another option, or Portillo's.

    • Reply
  • B
    Devoted June 2013
    Becca ·
    • Flag

    I had the same problem that you're finding for your sister's wedding, as Chicago was where I had my heart set on getting married (majority of family is from there). I almost considered using Michael's Red Hots in Highland Park and trying to do something more upscale than Hot Dogs there, although they wanted a pretty hefty price for it. That's why we've moved ours to NYC instead of Chicago and doing ours in Central Park where there's only a $25 fee for securing spots for 100 guests and having a photographer, and using the Carnegie Deli so we can make our PP limit on the lower side. I don't know if Millenium Park may work out there with her budget. If I remember correctly seeing a lot of very picturesque spots throughout that park that could work well. I'm pretty sure some caterers if she goes for a picnic lunch or dinner in the park kind of reception could help with the food budget part. I also don't know how expensive Harry Carray's may be, that's another option, or Portillo's.

    • Reply
  • N
    Savvy January 2011
    nkuch4 ·
    • Flag

    Thanks all. I know it probably won't be possible, but she hasn't set a budget or a guest list. If she can get it down I think she can do it. Thanks for the suggestions, will look there. Have contacted a few places and I have some time. Thanks all!

    • Reply
  • Fun bride
    Master November 2010
    Fun bride ·
    • Flag

    I do not know the cost but a friend of mine got married in the South Side Cultural Center.

    • Reply
  • A
    Just Said Yes December 2015
    Anonymous ·
    • Flag

    There is a place called Michelle's Ballroom in Chicago that is extremely reasonable and beautiful! It was once a federal bank that has been converted into a ballroom. http://www.michellesballroom.com/

    • Reply
  • Megan
    Just Said Yes October 2016
    Megan ·
    • Flag

    Nkuch4---where did you have your wedding for around 10k?

    • Reply

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