If you’re a millennial who’s anything like me, then you probably love a good plant. You may have added one, or two, or, I don’t know, 25 (guilty as charged) to your little green family since COVID hit. Or, you may just enjoy the occasional rooftop garden meal. Whichever it is, these Chicago wedding venues for plant lovers are sure to pique your interest.
Now, I’m not talking about the obvious outdoor garden venues here. Those are gorgeous and all, but they usually aren’t located within the city limits. These venues are, and they perfectly balance the hustle and bustle of the city with the feeling of a garden oasis. So, I’ll stop chattering now, and let you in on the best places in Chicago to say ‘I do’ if your monstera plant may or may not be your closest friend.
Celeste’s is the ideal venue if you’d like a small, intimate wedding. It’s overflowing with lush, live plants that will provide the perfect backdrop as you exchange your vows. To sweeten the deal even further, it features a retractable roof with stunning views of the surrounding skyscrapers.
Bonus: If you’d like, you can also rent out the other floors of Celeste’s for a glam, art deco cocktail hour and a literal disco dance floor.
Kimpton Gray is—and I do not exaggerate here—a perfect downtown Chicago hotel venue. It’s got all the bells and whistles: gorgeous getting-ready suites, plenty of indoor space, plenty of picturesque spots, modern ballrooms, and (my personal favorite) Boleo, a Latin-inspired rooftop lounge.
Between your ceremony and dinner in the ballroom, you and your guests can utilize the rest of the space for cocktails and dancing (and maybe even the rooftop later for some dancing under the stars). If your wedding is on the smaller side, you can have the entire thing in Boleo if you’d like. This one’s also got a retractable roof for an outdoor feel and those Windy City views you just can’t get enough of.
If “conservatory” is in the name, you already know it’s gonna be good. Garfield Park Conservatory features both outdoor gardens and a variety of indoor greenhouses for your guests to explore. And, as a photographer, I’ve gotta say that it has some of the most amazing photo locations, including the fern room. Plus, the majority of the locations work year-round, which makes this one great for winter weddings. Could there be a more perfect venue for plant lovers?
4. Ivy Room
Ivy Room is a hidden gem in the heart of River North: a private, ivy-filled courtyard that’s the ceremony backdrop of a plant lover’s dreams. After your first kiss with your new spouse, you have the option of either staying outside to enjoy cocktail hour or making your way inside. Either way, this one’s a great option for those who’d like to incorporate a little green into their day while sticking close to the hustle and bustle of Chicago (because let’s be honest, we all can’t help but love it).
This one’s an industrial loft venue with all the perks of being close to downtown—like killer views and proximity to all the popular photo spots—while also having a terrace that incorporates a perfect amount of greenery (but I’m not gonna stop anyone if their florist adds more).
Bonus: Once you open the doors to the terrace, the space has got an indoor-outdoor living* vibe that’s ideal for COVID-era weddings. The rental also comes with extra plants that you can use to spruce up the corners of the room.
*A phrase I didn’t know was a thing until I binge-watched Selling Sunset.
Bonus Venue: The Dalcy
The Dalcy itself is not a particularly lush or green venue, but hear me out. In order to get there, your guests will walk through the venue’s sister restaurant, Aba, and it is a gorgeous plant lover’s paradise. It will set the tone for your guests, and you can work with your florist to make sure your wedding at Dalcy has the same style.
I hope this list of Chicago wedding venues for plant lovers has inspired you! I love this city, and I *really* love photographing weddings here. If you are a fellow plant lover who is thinking to yourself “YES Chelsea, I’m in!” let’s connect! We can talk about our best friends (aka the plants) and find the perfect spot for your dream green wedding with all of the tropical vibes.