For the non-traditional Chicago bride who isn't dreaming of a religious wedding, venues that can host both the ceremony and the reception should stand at the top of your list for convenience alone. Here, a look at six of our favorite venues across the city with distinct spaces for your ceremony and reception.
The Ivy Room (Above)
Originally a working space for some of the city's top artists, the creativity comes through in the event spaces, too. Swap "I dos" in an intimate, ivy-walled outdoor courtyard that feels so far from the hustle and bustle of the city, and you'd never guess you were two blocks from Michigan Avenue. Post ceremony, guests will be guided into the high-ceilinged ballroom that's been expertly updated with hardwood floors and floor-to-ceiling windows.
Photo: Courtesy of 19 East
If sleek and modern are the name of the game for your wedding day, 19 East is the ceremony-and-reception venue for you. The building itself, which is managed by the catering experts at Food for Thought, can be traced back to the 1800s. Thanks to recent renovations, it now gives off a clean and contemporary vibe in the city's south side. You have several options for how the event will flow through the venue's 10,000 square feet. Our favorite part is the hideaway upstairs, the perfect getting-ready location for you and your bridesmaids.
Photo: Big Delicious Planet Catering via Instagram
Not your traditional wedding ceremony-and-reception venue choice — but nonetheless stunning — A New Leaf features several levels: an outdoor courtyard, a dancing level, and a space on the main level for dinner. You'll love it for its close proximity to Lincoln Park — perfect for pre-event photos — and the hip Lincoln Hotel where guests can lay their heads after the party. Plus, your florist decision is taken care of as the small, intimate space is home to florists who've been in the business for 30 years. Another check off the wedding to-do list!
Photo: Courtesy of Chicago Athletic Association Hotel
At the recently renovated Chicago Athletic Association, you'll find no shortage of event spaces that exude old-world glamour. Exchange vows at Cindy's rooftop with Chicagocentric views of Millennium Park below. Then, step onto the Carrara marble floors in the White City Ballroom for your reception. At the end of the night, guests won't need to travel far — they can stay on site in one of the 241 hotel rooms.
Photo: Wedding Wire
It's worthwhile to consider the Adler Planetarium for your big day for the photo opportunities alone. When the weather cooperates, the ceremony can take place on the outdoor terrace — boasting the most stunning skyline view right behind you and your fiancé. Continue the skyline focus at the reception in a curved-windowed hall, and head to the Grainger Sky Theater for dancing on an LED-light dance floor.
Photo: Wedding Wire
The historic Gold Coast building dates back to 1893 and features fantastic architectural details at every turn — a grand staircase, regal columns, and a chandelier stemming from a 20-foot ceiling. You and your fiancé can exchange vows in the lobby in front of a marble staircase and then move into Ruggles Hall for the reception, an elegant space that comfortably seats up to 200 guests.