The Venue Quest: Inspired by A Recent Conversation

So you got the rock! Now comes to finding the place. With some many different venues, it can definitely be an overwhelming process trying to find the right place. I had an interesting exchange with a bride-to-be today that was injuring about a speakeasy-stlye bar space for a formal sit down wedding reception. The layout of this particular “loungey” bar isn’t particularly conducive to a traditional reception set-up. It got me to thinking: Finding the right venue is kinda of like finding the right guy! You have your ideal vision of the perfect guy in your mind, and you have traits and characteristics that you HAVE to have. Then you have the characteristics you can live with. You have those instances where you find someone that you SHOULD like, but don’t. Or you find someone that you try to “work with” only to realize you’re trying to make them into someone they’re not. Eventually, you meet “the guy” and angels sing (and you get that ring)!

Finding the right venue for you ties back into my previous post. Choose a vision, and stick to your guns! What do you like? Do usually gravitate towards clean lines? Do you love rich woods? Do you like bling? Do you have more grand tastes? Are you more traditional? These are the kinds of question to ask to get you started. Stick to those things that are the most important to you. Do you really want to have a seated dinner or are you open to doing a cocktail-style reception? Sometimes you have to go see what’s out there to get a feel for what your vision is, but eventually you’ll get a feel for what you really want. I’ve included some links to some really cool venues in the city. For example, if you love traditional touches, but know you don’t want a traditional space like a ballroom, go for a more modern space like a museum or a loft, and incorporate traditional touches like candelabras on the tables or chandelier-stlye lighting installments on the table. Maybe you need a blank space that you can decorate to truly bring your vision to life!  If you love outdoors and being in nature, you may have to go outside your box a little bit, especially in the city! You could do the zoo, or a park district location. I’m a city girl at heart, but the surrounding suburbs of Chicago has some beautiful outdoor spaces as well. Looking at venues, do your research ahead of time and be knowledgeable. Make sure you know the capacities, and amenities before you go out to appointments so you’re not wasting your time. One helpful tip is to ask for a floor plan. If the venue has one that shows the set up for your numbers, even better. You don’t want to end up booking a space that advertises 200 when they can only realistically fit 150. Definitely don’t try to make a venue something it’s not. If you walk into a place and you immediately see 10 things you want to change, perhaps that’s an indication that that may not be the space for you. Again, follow your gut!I can honestly say that there’s a venue out there for everyone! If you need help finding venues, or not sure where to start, feel free to comment or shoot me a message. Happy hunting!


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