(Closed) Chicago Area Venue Ideas

posted 8 years ago in Chicago
Post # 3
Member
17 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: July 2011

Hi, I am right along with you…it is so frustrating that everything is soooo expensive.  I really am not into the whole traditional banquet hall either, however, it does appear to be the route that I will be taking since the non-traditional places pack on the cost quickly and easily.  I will defintely keep you posted as to what I find.  Also, please do not be afraid to call, even if the prices appear high.  Many of the places are willing to work with your budget, negotiation is the key! What places have you looked into thus far?

Post # 4
Member
5262 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: June 2012

Check out Promontory Point. It’s part of the park distract, so prices are very reasonable, but you will have to arrange for your own caterer. 

Post # 7
Member
30 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: October 2010

hi. i too was looking for something a little different. we are having our ceremony at a catholic church and our reception at an art gallery. the art gallery is called the society for arts. the rental rate is reasonable (to me). ask for Eva. she is letting us set up on Thursday even though our wedding is on Saturday. she is also letting us arrange for pick ups on monday. the space would be a good size for your wedding guests. ample room for dancing. there is a downstairs (basement) gallery and main gallery upstairs with an attached foyer-type room with a bar. she has an archive of art pieces that she is allowing us to use (she said we can choose what we want and she will hang them for us. she also said we can bring in our own art/decorations. we are planning to put up paper lanterns and she said she will hang them. the church we are getting married at is nearby and they will let us keep our cars parked there for the evening. i’m pretty sure Eva can ask them if you can park your cars there even if you do not get married there. otherwise it’s metered parking.

as for catering, i am working with mario’s events. i have not tried their food, but they have a menu online. totally reasonable. the most reasonable you will find. they have been in business for 30 years and have many referrals. If you do a buffet, family-style or plated dinner, the prices start at 20pp. Yes, you read that right. that includes their service staff, dinnerware, glassware, cake cutting/serving, so, so, so, so, so much more. they’ll even set up place-cards and table decor for you. i found them online on a random search. i don’t know why i haven’t found them on the wedding boards. but, like i said, i don’t know what their food is like. we will be doing a tasting with them soon. you really can’t beat it for the price. i dare you:)

as for tables and chairs, we will have to rent those. mario’s rents them out, but they provide the linens (tablecloths, skirting and napkins) for free if you book them as a caterer. the only other rental i can think of are glasses. mario’s will provide glasses on the tables for water and champagne/wine. it’s not a big deal to me. they rent them for .30 a piece.

sorry it’s long, but i know what you’re going through. i think you can do it for 8000 for 75 guests though. in the city, no less! the art gallery is just a couple miles from downtown. i’ve done a ton of research, so let me know if you have other questions. good luck and congratulations!!

Post # 8
Member
30 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: October 2010

DP

Post # 9
Member
30 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: October 2010

btw—we are bringing in our own liquor and hiring Mario’s bartenders. it’s more cost effective for us. i think Mario’s has some pretty reasonable bar packages though. the gallery said we can stay as long as we want, so no need for an after-party at another location:)

Post # 10
Member
337 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2010

We had a very nice and unique wedding for about $8,000 at the Mayslake Peabody Estate in Oak Brook with Catering by Danielle at Maison Cuisine (who is awesome, makes delicious food and is very good at working within your budget).  Between the venue rental and the food/servers/bar/dishware/table cloths, it came out to about $50 per person.  I’m in the midsts of doing recaps on my blog right now (you can find the link in my profile) and I think the wedding came out really lovely and unique.

Post # 11
Member
13 posts
Newbee

Promontory Point is an excellent suggestion.  You can also check with the South Shore Cultural Center.  Navy Pier’s Crystal Gardens are beautiful, but the price is probably too high.  Have you thought about one of the cruises?

Post # 12
Member
30 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: October 2010

update: we just had our tasting at mario’s. the food was yummy and marc, the owner, was so nice!

Post # 14
Member
1 posts
Wannabee
  • Wedding: July 2011

@oohlala: I am so very thankful for your wedding input, it sounds like you have been through what I am going through now!! I am completely interested in your plan. I was wondering how much is the Art gallery and what are you guys doing for music? Thank you sooo much! Brandy

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