Unique Chicago wedding venues coveted by Offbeat Bride readers

Chicago Offbeat Wedding Venues
Carolyn and Mike walk by Lake Michigan in Chicago. Photo by Amanda Megan Miller

Between the Offbeat Bride Tribe, our archive of real weddings, and our Vendor Guide, we've seen a LOT of vendor recommendations. So we decided to start rounding up these nuggets of info sourced directly from our readers for a series of reader recommended vendor list posts. We're starting right in the middle of the country with one of our largest markets: venues in and around Chicago and the Chicago suburbs (near and dear to my Chicago-native heart). Let's take a look at who our readers have recommended, where they are located, and how you can contact them to get your Chicago venue search started. Note that these are for ALL budgets, so no guarantees that they'll all fit into yours.

Chicago wedding venue resources:

City of Chicago Wedding Venues

DePaul-Courtlou Commons
2324 N. Fremont St., Chicago, IL 60614​​​​​
depaul.edu

Art institute of Chicago
111 S. Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL 60603
artic.edu

Catalyst Ranch
656 W. Randolph, Suite 3W, Chicago, IL 60661
catalystranch.com

Chicago wedding venues
Carrie and Simon at Dank Haus. Photo by Ashton Ray Hansen

Dank Haus German Cultural Center
4740 N. Western Avenue, Chicago, IL 60625
dankhaus.com

Field Museum
1400 S. Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, IL 60605
fieldmuseum.org

Adler Planetarium
1300 S. Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, IL 60605
adlerplanetarium.org

Shedd Aquarium
1200 S. Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, IL 60605
sheddaquarium.org

Announcement!
Stephanie and Dave's marquee at Portage Theater. Photo by Studio Finch

Portage Theater
4050 N. Milwaukee Ave. Chicago, IL
theportagetheater.com

Bridgeport Art Center, Skyline Loft
1200 W. 35th Chicago, IL 60609
skylineloft.com

VenueOne
1034 W. Randolph St. Chicago, IL 60607
venueonechicago.com

Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago Warehouse
220 East Chicago Avenue Chicago IL 60611
mcachicago.org

McCartneyWedding344
Carlee & Daniel at Stan Mansion. Photo by Allison Kortokrax

Stan Mansion
2408 North Kedzie, Chicago, IL 60647
stanmansion.com

Illuminating Co.
19 E. 21 Street, Chicago, Il 60616
chicagoilluminatingcompany.com

The Ivy Room
12 E. Ohio Street Chicago 6061
ivyroomchicago.com

Salvage One
1840 W. Hubbard, Chicago, IL 60622
salvageone.com

Carmichael’s Warehouse
1052 W. Monroe Street, Chicago, Illinois 60607
carmichaelsteakhouse.com

Val+Theron+Wedding+by+Emilia+J-2167935559-O
Val and Theron at Hotel Monaco. Photo by Emilia Jane

Hotel Monaco
225 N. Wabash Avenue, Chicago, IL 60601
monaco-chicago.com

The Newberry, Independent Research Library
60 W. Walton Street, Chicago, IL 60610
newberry.org

The Blackstone Hotel
636 S. Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL 60605
marriott.com

The Rookery
209 S. LaSalle Street Chicago, Illinois 60604
therookerybuilding.com

Salvatore’s
525 W. Arlington Pl., Chicago, IL 60614
salvatores-chicago.com

Chicago History Museum
1601 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60614
chicagohistory.org

The Palmer House
17 East Monroe Street Chicago, IL 60603
palmerhousehiltonhotel.com

Revel Downtown, Revel Fulton Market, Revel Motor Row
440 W Randolph Street, Chicago, IL
1215 W Fulton Street, Chicago, IL
2400 S Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL
revelspace.com

Schubas
3159 N. Southport Ave., Chicago, IL 60657
lh-st.com

Lincoln Hall
2424 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago, IL 60614
lh-st.com

Mars Gallery
1139 W. Fulton Market St., Chicago, IL 60607
marsgallery.com

Kitchen Chicago
324 N. Leavitt, Chicago IL, 60612
kitchenchicago.com

Illinois Wedding Venues
Cameron and Keith at Alhambra Palace. Photo by Liz Liu Photography

Alhambra Palace
1240 W Randolph St., Chicago, IL
alhambrapalacerestaurant.com

Carnivale
702 W Fulton St, Chicago, IL 60661
carnivalechicago.com

Haymarket Brewery
737 W. Randolph, Chicago, IL 60661
haymarketbrewing.com

International Museum of Surgical Science
1524 N. Lake Shore Dr., Chicago, IL 60610
imss.org

Room 1520
1520 W Fulton St., Chicago, IL 60607
room1520.com

Green House Loft
2545 W. Diversey Ave., Chicago, IL 60647
greenhouseloft.com

Floating Gallery
1925 N. Halsted St., Chicago, IL 60614
floatingworld.com

Loyola University
1032 W. Sheridan Rd. Chicago, IL 60660
luc.edu

Irish American Heritage Center
4626 N Knox Ave., Chicago, IL 60630
irish-american.org

Ravenswood Event Center
4011 North Ravenswood Ave., Chicago, IL 60613
ravenswoodeventcenter.com

Gallery 400 at UIC
College of Architecture and the Arts, University of Illinois at Chicago
400 South Peoria Street (MC 034), Chicago, IL 60607
gallery400.uic.edu

Zhou B Gallery
1029 W 35th St., Chicago, IL 60609
zhoubartcenter.com

Amazing Day
Vanessa and Nick at Prairie Productions. Photo by Michael Robers

Prairie Productions
1314 W. Randolph St., Chicago, IL 60607
prairieproduction.net

Glessner House
1800 S. Prairie Avenue, Chicago, IL 60616
glessnerhouse.org

Chicago Symphony Orchestra Center
220 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago 60604
cso.org

Keith House
1900 S. Prairie Ave., Chicago, IL
prairieavenuegallery.com

VOLO
2008 W. Roscoe St. Chicago, IL
volorestaurant.com

_MG_6288-Edit
Amelia and Ben rocking the Swedish American Museum. Photos by Ann Oleinik

Swedish American Museum
5211 N. Clark St., Chicago, IL 60640
swedishamericanmuseum.org

Michelle's Ballroom
2800 W. Belmont Ave., Chicago, IL 60618
michellesballroom.com

Revolution Brewing
2323 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60647
revbrew.com

Chicago Urban Art Society
3636 S. Iron St., Chicago, IL 60609
chicagourbanartsociety.com

Birchwood Kitchen
2211 W. North Ave., Chicago, IL
birchwoodkitchen.com

Lightology
215 W. Chicago Avenue, Chicago, IL 60654
lightology.com

The Bottom Lounge
1375 W. Lake St. Chicago, IL 60607
bottomlounge.com

Gaelic Park
6119 W. 147th St. Oak Forest, Illinios 60452
chicagogaelicpark.org

Chicago Unique Wedding Venues
Heather and Marty hanging at The Bean before their Chicago Cultural Center wedding. Photo by Heather Eidson

Chicago Cultural Center
78 E. Washington St., Chicago, IL 60602
cityofchicago.org

Chicago Park District wedding venues:
Douglas Park Field House
1401 S. Sacramento Dr., Chicago, IL 60623
Humboldt Park Field House
1400 N. Sacramento Ave., Chicago, IL 60622
Garfield Park Conservatory
300 N. Central Park Ave., Chicago, IL 60624

Val+Theron+Wedding+by+Emilia+J-2168064987-O
Val and Theron and their Chicago backdrop. Photo by Emilia Jane

Chicago Suburbs Wedding Venues

Green Garden Christmas Tree farm
11615 W. Pauling Rd, Manhattan, IL 60442
greengardenchristmastreefarm.com

Morton Arboretum
4100 Illinois Rte 53, Lisle, IL 60532
mortonarb.org

Wills (794 of 907)
Allie and Megan at the Carleton Hotel. Photo by Michelle Lytle

Carleton Hotel
1110 Pleasant St., Oak Park, IL 60302
carletonhotel.com

The Abbington
3 South 002 IL Route 53 Glen Ellyn, IL 60137
abbingtonbanquets.com

Stephanie and Tim
Stephanie and Tim at the Rialto Square Theater. Photo by Liz Lui Photography

Rialto Square Theater
15 E. Van Buren St. Joliet, IL 60432
rialtosquare.com

19th Century Club
178 Forest Avenue Oak Park, IL 60301
19thcenturyclub.com

Mayslake Peabody
1717 W. 31st St., Oak Brook, IL 60523
mayslakepeabody.com

Oscar Swan
1800 West State St., Geneva, IL 60134
3351 N Elizabeth Scales Mound Rd., Galena, IL 60136
oscarswanweddings.com

Ceremony
Jessica and Andrew at The Barn. Photo by Rachel Sumner Photography

The Barn
6526 Clarendon Hills Rd, Willowbrook, IL 60527
akfentertainment.com

Kenilworth Club
410 Kenilworth Avenue, Kenilworth, IL 60043
kenilworthclub.org

Blackberry Creek Camp and Conference Center
10701 River Road Plano, IL 60545
blackberrycreekcenter.com

Burpee Museum
737 North Main St., Rockford, IL 61103
burpee.org

Buffalo
Diana and Dale at Brookfield Zoo. Photo by Concept One Photography

Brookfield Zoo
8400 31st St., Brookfield, IL 60513
czs.org/Brookfield-Zoo

Lake Katherine Nature Center and Botanic Gardens
7402 W. Lake Katherine Dr., Palos Heights, IL 60463
lakekatherine.org

Royalty West Banquet Hall
8675 Archer Avenue, Willow Springs, IL 60480
royaltywestbanquets.com

Woman’s Club of Wilmette
930 Greenleaf Ave., Wilmette, IL 60091
womansclubofwilmette.org

Untitled
Sarah and Eddie at the Genesee Theater. Photo by a friends

Genesee Theater
203 N Genesee St., Waukegan, IL 60085
geneseetheatre.com

Independence Grove
16400 W. Buckley Rd., Libertyville, IL
eventsatindependencegrove.com

Kemper Lakes Golf Club
24000 N.Old McHenry Rd., Kildeer,IL 60047
kemperlakesgolf.com

Chicago Botanic Garden
1000 Lake Cook Rd., Glencoe, IL 60022
chicagobotanic.org

Starved Rock Lodge
2668 East 873 Road Oglesby, IL 61348
starvedrocklodge.com

Illinois unique wedding venues
Heather and Tim by Lake Michigan. Photo by Emila Jane

What favorite Chicago wedding venue should we add to this list? Where are you having your Illinois wedding?

  1. Redmoon Theater Event Space is the perfect alternative wedding space. The staff is incredible and the location is awesome.

  2. Lincoln Park Zoo and Promontory Point should be on this list, too.

    I'm happy to see my reception location, DANK Haus, made the list.
    My tiny ceremony took place in front of US Cellular Field. They do rent out parts of the ballpark and have on-field weddings, but it was out of our budget. But, the nice employees let us go onto the warning track for some photos anyway!

  3. The Herrington Inn, in Geneva (suburbs). If we had decided to have the wedding in the city, it was definitely going to be the Newberry, but we have a LOT of people coming in from out of town, so it was important to have lots of rooms close by with a range of prices. The Herrington's event staff have been so lovely to work with, it has all seemed so easy, and the food is FANTASTIC. And our ceremony will be overlooking the Fox River.

    http://www.herringtoninn.com/

  4. I got legalled at the Cultural Center for $10, then had a big family picnic in Grant Park. Then the "official" reception was on the Spirit of Chicago Fireworks Cruise that night.

    Securing the park permit was extremely stressful, and it was the most basic permit they offer. As was signing up for the Cultural Center thing. Conversely, the coordinator for Spirit was super easy to work with and treated my teeny group with the same care I'd expect for groups of hundreds.

    I had a cousin who had hers at Salvage One, and it's a really cool space.

  5. I'd petition to add Northwest Indiana to the Chicago Area considerations. We may be across state lines, but we're close enough that we count as suburbs too!

    That said, our venue is Vermillion Farm & Prairie in Valparaiso, IN. We're still over a year out, but so far the owners have been great to work with!

  6. My ceremony is going to be at Naper Settlement (an outdoor historical museum) and our reception is at Two Brothers Roundhouse (brewery). I can't believe neither of them made this list!

  7. We're getting married in the fall at Copernicus Center and I must say it is a great option for the budget conscious who love the rustic exposed brick look. The building was originally a 1930's movie palace that has now been converted into a Polish community center, and it is beautiful! The staff has been really attentive and great so far, and seriously I cannot emphasize the price enough – nothing else in the city even came close to the price.

    http://copernicuscenter.org/

  8. Just had our wedding at the Highland Park Community House (http://www.highlandparkcommunityhouse.org/). Beautiful old (1920s) house in Highland Park, IL with a huge ballroom with lots of big windows for lots of natural light. Everyone there is super-easy to work with as well, and their rates are very affordable. They're also very accommodating; they have no "preferred vendors," so we were able to customize our wedding to our exact specifications. I can't recommend this place highly enough!

  9. Lincoln Park Zoo should definitely be on this list. Cafe Brauer literally gave me goosebumps when we viewed it.
    http://www.lpzoo.org/events/host-private-event/cafe-brauer

    Another great suburban venue is Two Brothers Roundhouse (formerly Walter Payton's Roundhouse) in Aurora, IL. It's affordable, they double as the caterer (and their food is DELICIOUS), plus they have great beer all in a unique and historic building.
    http://www.twobrothersbrewing.com/roundhouse/banquets/

  10. Loft on Lake in the West Loop is where we got married – exposed brick and a huge skylight! The Cultural Center is also beautiful!

  11. As much as I love Chicago and a lot of these sites, being in central Illinois has basically made looking at venues maddening because the second you go "Illinois wedding" everything is in the Chicagoland area. There's a whole hunk of state attached to it XD I guess I just wish I could find offbeat venues outside the major metro areas… I may have lived here too long XD [Honesty moment: the most frustrating venue problem is that I still don't know WHERE to look for venues, with FH's fam in Seattle [who want to be SUPER involved and controlling and yet can travel SUPER easy], my immediate family in central Illinois and my extended family [with ill grandparents] in easternshore MD. OH, and my brother & SIL is in Japan].

  12. Viper Alley in Lincolnshire! It used to be a concert venue, complete with bowling lanes. I'm getting married here next year and it is amazing!

  13. The event space at Terra & Vine! It's in Evanston, but that just means that parking is easier, haha. It's cozy, great food, great service, and to top it all off you can work with a super famous master sommelier. I'm a wine girl myself, so imagine my excitement!!

  14. This is a good list but it has a lot of places I didn't think were venues.

    Has anyone had any experiences at the Shapiro Ballroom in Chicago? I'm looking into them for our wedding but they don't have many reviews on Yelp….looks like they're a renovated theater, they have a couple pics on their website:
    http://shapiroballroom.com

    I'm going to see about setting up a tour there and if anyone's interested I'll report back. Looks like a cool / cheap space. We're getting married in May 2018, need to lock something down.

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