Post # 1
I recently became engaged and I already feel like my search for a reception site has been endless. We looked several places and I just havent found the right one yet. I am really looking for a place that is decent value or at least pretty inclusive( I hate being nickel and dimed), has some type of outdoor element, great food, and is run professionally. I’m not really a fan of banquet halls unless they are pretty unique. Our budget for the reception (food and alchohol) is probably around $15,000 for 150- 160 guests. I really like Cantigny but I am nervous about the cordinator and I would have to cut my guest list because I was told the maximum amount of people they could fit in the room was 140, no exceptions. I am really excited about getting married I just never realized that it would be this difficult to find a reception site. I am curious where everyone else eventually decided on having their receptions and what they loved or didnt love about them. Thanks : )
Post # 3
I just got married at Wilder Mansion in Elnhurst, IL. It is a very unique venue, with a beautiful garden outside to walk around in during the cocktail hr and after dinner. The venue itself is not all-inclusive, but they have a preferred caterer list and the caterer we chose literally brought in EVERYTHING – food, alcohol, linens, tables, cake, etc…was really fantastic. Also, the venue coordinator and our caterer worked extremely well together and I had absolutely no need for a separate DOC. Feel free to PM me if you want more details! http://www.wildermansion.org
Post # 4
Congrats on your engagement! Here are some places for you to check out that I’ve either heard were good or that I’ve worked with in the past:
- Navy Piers (Crystal Gardens)
- A New Leaf
- Promontory Point
- Fulton’s on the River (Absolutely loved them!)
- Bin 36
- Union League Club
- Green Dolphin Street (Garden is fabulous here)
- The Rookery Building (Fabulous for a reception)
- Signature Room at the 95th (located on top of the John Hancock Building) (Absolutely breathtaking views of the city)
- The Palmer House Hilton
- Chicago Cultural Center
- Germania Place
Just to name a few….hope this helps you out! Good Luck! Feel free to PM me if you have any questions or want more sites to check out. Happy Planning!
Post # 5
Hi – we are having our wedding reception next summer at Cog Hill. It’s a public golf course, not a private country club. We liked it because they only hold one wedding a night there, the clubhouse has a nice old world feel to it, there’s an outdoor patio for cocktail hour, and it’s located not too far from hotels off I-55. The per person price was also much more reasonable than other golf courses we checked out because they included tax and service charges/gratuity into the amount, so we already have that budgeted into things. An all-around nice place and a good value.
Post # 6
I have looked at just about EVERY wedding reception place in the Chicago suburbs…from golf courses to art galleries. Our budget was similar to yours – perhaps a little less – and we did not want to get married in a banquet hall. This forced us to go somewhere outside the city.
Off the top of my head some of my favorites were:
Metropolis Ballroom – Arlighton Heights
Herrington Inn – Geneva
Hotel Baker – St. Charles
Hyatt Lodge – Oakbrook
I think some of those were slightly out of our budget (and some too small because we are at about 200 people)…but I can’t remember now. I have most of my information at home.
Feel free to PM me if you want any of my thoughts and/or suggestions. Like Honeylove, we ended up choosing Wilder Mansion.
Post # 7
Check out the Garfield Park Conservatory too – they are right in the city and in terms of rental prices are more reasonable than most places in the city.
Post # 8
Don’t stray away from places that don’t have food. I’m having my reception at Architectural Artifacts and book Food Evolution as my caterer. They’ve both been very accommodating, and Sue (w/Food Evolution) has been wonderful at helping me keep to my budget. I know it’s more work this way, but it was the only way to get a venue we loved with food we could afford. Hope that helps!
Post # 9
Thank you everyone for all the great suggestions! Downtown Chicago locations are beautiful but after reflecting on prices I think that I am probably going to end up in the burbs somewhere. I did visit the Wilder Mansion and it was absolutely beautiful, I just really want to be able to see all my guests during dinner and I dont think the separate rooms would work for me. However, it is beautiful for a smaller wedding! Thanks again everyone for all the great suggestions!
Post # 10
we are going with the signature room at seven bridges in woodridge (www.signatureevent.com). they have gorgeous patios and are great to work with. your numbers are perfect for the rooms as well. good luck!
Post # 11
Have you tried somewhere out in Oak Park area? They have several beautiful venues and churches!
Post # 12
I agree with @KMSull – Oak Park is lovely and has great venues. I had my reception at the Nineteenth Century Club, which is also where Mrs. Stiletto had her reception. It’s a historic building with a beautiful ballroom that could comfortably accommodate 150-160 (we had just under 150). You can also use the first floor for cocktails. The Club uses an exclusive caterer, Cucina Paradiso/Twomaytoz (an Italian restaurant in downtown Oak Park), and they would be within your budget. They also take care of rentals for you, so you don’t have to worry about tables/chairs/linens/plates/silverware. I had a super, stress-free experience with both the Club and Cucina Paradiso.
Post # 13
Have you checked out the Danada House in Wheaton? Their web site shows no where near the beauty of the location. I’d call see if they have your date available, request prices and go for a visit.
Post # 14
Hotel Baker is nice. Also, the Elgin Country Club is beautiful and fairly reasonable.
Post # 15
I know how you feel ChicagoB2B. I was having the toughest time find a place I liked and that fit my budget. I didnt want a banquet hall either and wanted an outdoor spot. I finally found a gorgeous country club. Odyssey Country Club in Tinley Park. They are very nice there and should totally be in your budget.
Post # 16
Thank you all so much for the help!!!