After extensive research and many lists of pros and cons, we narrowed it down to just three choices. Or maybe four. Oh, who are we kidding—we had a final three and then swapped places with another one…but there were two we kept coming back to. The first…
Image via Wikipedia
The Allerton Hotel
The Allerton is four blocks south of the church where we’re getting married, an easy walk down Michigan Avenue. The Tip Top Tap Ballroom is on the west side of the 23rd floor, overlooking Michigan Ave, with great views of the city. See those towers in the picture? The closest one is where the head table goes.
Image via The Allerton Hotel by Edward Fox Photography
- Gorgeous space in a historic building
- Amazing skyline views
- All-inclusive package that makes planning easy
- Comparable cost to/lower than other choices
- Lounge furniture around the perimeter of the dance floor included
- The layout is a little awkward. The ballroom spans two of the towers and the space in between—while the ceilings are full height in the towers, the space between the ceiling drops. That also means the dance floor is in the north tower and has only one open side.
- There is no access to outdoor space.
- Entry to the hotel is through the “motor lobby” on the first floor (the full lobby is on two) and then…
- The elevators are small. (They are new, but original 1920s size.)
- There are lots of red accents, including the carpet. Unfortunately, I don’t like red.
The space overall has an Art Deco feel. Our wedding would be black and white with pops of a primary accent color (a blue or apple green most likely) and hits of red to tie in with the existing decor. Maybe something like the inspiration board below, although without the outdoors aspect.
Inspiration board via Snippet & Ink
Next up, we go one more block south and a block west from the Allerton Hotel to the Murphy Auditorium.
The Murphy Auditorium (Mrs. Treasure’s venue!) is owned by the American College of Surgeons and is a very classic, elegant event space.
Photo via Avant-garde Wedding
- Very unique
- Beautiful entry stairwell, where guests could also spend time during cocktail hour
- Easy entrance to the venue
- Excellent layout
- No minimum to meet
Photo via Christina G Photography
- There are no windows.
- It looks a little church-like.
- Cocktail hour would be in the lobby, which is 13 feet wide.
It’s a very classic event space that would work well with any color scheme. I would probably choose shades of green with some navy blue (because the free chairs are navy blue and I’m most likely too cheap to pay for fancy chairs). (And I like navy blue fine.)
Option three flipped around between the Columbus Park Refectory (so pretty; so inconvenient) and the Rookery (so pretty; and expensive). And any number of the 50-some other choices on my ridiculous spreadsheet.
How many venues did you consider? Were you all over the place?