Spanning over an area of 60,000 hectares, the city of Chicago is found on the shore of Lake Michigan. The town has 26 miles of shoreline and many beaches with 18.5 miles of paths to run, walk or bike on. This big town is popular for its sports, tourist attractions and nature parks, and an average of 86 million people travel here every year. The first skyscraper in the world is found in Chicago and is 110 stories high, as well as the largest municipal library in the world that holds 6.5 million books.
The first settler in Chicago was an African-American man named Jean Baptiste du Sable who migrated from Haiti. This city is also where the term “jazz” was first used back in 1914, and today it has over 25 theaters and more than 200 concert venues. Chicago has an active arts scene and is a popular spot for concerts, ballets and operas which makes it a great place for a gala location.
Gala Location Options in Chicago
Galas are special and elegant occasions that offer performances and entertainment. They are often big events with lots of guests, and in order for the event to run smoothly you’ll need to have everything prepared.
Your visitors might get hungry and if you want your event to last for a couple of hours you will need to provide refreshments. You can find a local catering company that offers elegant and tasty finger foods to keep everyone happy content to be at your Chicago gala location.
When planning a gala, the way that you choose to decorate the space can have a big impact on how the event looks and feels for the guests. You can get creative with the decor to bring out a classy and grand aesthetic, or follow a specific theme.
- Live Entertainment
Providing entertainment is a great way to make any gathering more enjoyable and will give your guests something to watch or listen to while they are mingling with one another. A live band would be well suited to a Chicago gala location, adding a little pizzazz and style.
Gala Location Companies in Chicago
You can find help setting up your gala with any of the experienced companies found around the city. Take a look at the professionals in Chicago that are listed below.
- Premier Catering & Events
Premier Catering & Events is a local company based in Chicago that has kept a good reputation for delicious food and friendly service for over 50 years. This business has experience catering to weddings, corporate meetings and social events like galas.
- Art of Imagination
If you are having trouble decorating your venue, get help from an event planner like Art of Imagination. This company has more than 15 years of experience and is available to help you with spatial planning, venue design and decorating. With some effort and the right help, you can make any space suitable for fancy occasion like a gala.
- Artists, Events & Entertainment
With over 25 years of experience, this company is a great place to find an assortment of entertainment options. Whether you want an interactive show or simple atmospheric entertainment, Artists, Events & Entertainment can help connect you with the right performers.
Pros and Cons of Gala Locations in Chicago
With a city as great as Chicago, it can be hard to find a reason not to host a gala here. But there are advantages and disadvantages associated with every city, and here are some to think about.
- Public transportation
The city of Chicago offers a decent public transportation system with one of the country’s largest spans of bus routes and railways. This can make it easier to get around the city without relying on a car, which can be useful while gathering supplies for your gala or if you want to explore the city.
- Great food
One of the perks of staying in Chicago is the amazing food scene. The city is home to your basic pizza and hot dog joints, but also offers more fine dining and fancier options that might be better suited to a gala location in Chicago.
- Nature and beaches
In the town of Chicago, you can find 500 nature parks and 26 public beaches on the coast of Lake Michigan. This means that you have lots of options if you want to spend some time outside, either in one of the greenspaces or by the water.
- Tough seasons
Chicago is a city that experiences four distinctive seasons, which can be nice with the diversity of seasonal activities but also unpleasant. The town has humid summers followed by a short autumn season that quickly leaves you in a freezing and snow-filled winter. It can be hard to plan activities based on the season, so keep this in mind before planning your event.
- High cost of living
Chicago is an expensive city to live in and all of Illinois is known to have an elevated property and sales tax compared to the national average. This means that most utilities, services and properties can cost a bit more here than in other places, so make sure that you work with a budget plan.
Chicago has experienced some air and water pollution since it used to not treat its sewer water before dumping it into the local waterways. The city has made some recent improvements regarding its water quality but still struggles with ozone layer pollution. It has an average of 14 days per year that are considered unsafe based on ozone pollution levels and has failed its inspection by the American Lung Association.
Famous Locations in Chicago
- Art Institute of Chicago
This museum is a world-class institution that displays hundreds of thousands of artworks that date back hundreds of years. The entire Art Institute of Chicago complex measures 400,000 square feet and has prints, sculptures, paintings, textiles, architectural drafts and photographs. It is especially well known for its impressionist and post-impressionist works.
- Navy Pier
One of modern Chicago’s most popular tourist attractions, Navy Pier first opened in 1916 under the premise of a shipping facility and amusement area. Here you can find a 50 acres area filled with varying things to do. You can spend time walking in the gardens, shopping, eating or attending a concert. Even amusement rides like a carousel and 150-foot tall Ferris wheel can be found here, along with a museum, numerous festivals, a botanical garden and a movie theater.
- Willis Tower
Built over a span of three years and opened to the public in 1974, this skyscraper was originally the world's tallest office building at 110 stories until 1996 when the Petronas Towers were built. Although the world now has several taller buildings, Willis Tower still offers an amazing 50-mile view of the city from its famous Skydeck where you can appreciate the architecture and layout of Chicago. If you are brave enough you can step onto the Ledge, an area with a glass floor where you can look down from 1,353 feet above the city streets.