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Hotel Baker and Riverside Receptions or other Western Burbs venues

Hi ladies,
I have about 15 reception venues on my list..I've only online researched so far, I haven't been to any in person yet. These 2 places rank high on my list and I was wondering if anyone can share any reviews/experiences with your own or other weddings. I think the main appeal is that they both are overlooking Fox River, very picturesque. I'm planning our wedding in Sep-Oct-Nov of next year....can only narrow it down to 100-200 guests at this time. And of course, budget is the main factor. The ceremony will be at a church in Naperville. My reception list includes everything from Hotels like the Downers Grove Doubletree, to banquet halls like the Abbington in Glen Ellyn, to restaurants like Meson Sabika in Naperville....any help would be so so appreciated! Thanks!
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Re: Hotel Baker and Riverside Receptions or other Western Burbs venues

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    edited December 2011
    Riverside Receptions is our venue and we LOVE it! The staff has been accomodating, the food tasting was fantastic and the bar packages are pretty generous. We love the 'different' feel of the venue with all the little rooms and great places for pictures... just in case the weather doesn't cooperate.

    We were deciding between Hotel Baker and RR, but the customer service and flexibility with budget and minimums at Riverside won us over. Everytime we asked for something the staff would respond immediately and with only a fraction of the fee of other venues. Lots of things are included at RR which was a big plus for us since we're on a tight budget.

    Hotel Baker is beautiful and I really would love to have had our wedding there. We just struggled with staff not responding to our calls or e-mails and being very inflexible when it came to substitutions in a wedding package. We have a smaller wedding (95ish) and we feel we would have been squished in at HB.

    At the same time, we are using Hotel Baker's trolley and my MOH/Sis and I are staying there the night before our wedding and hoping to get great pictures there the morning of our wedding.

    In my opinion, it is definitely worth a visit to both places! :)

    Also, PM me with your e-mail address if you want pictures I took of both venues.
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    edited December 2011
    My reception is at the Danada House in Wheaton in 3 weeks; we loved it because you get the whole estate and we didn't want the typical banquet thing. Beautiful house for cocktail hour and very cool atrium for the reception, plus they just spent all this money redoing their gardens/grounds/fountains, etc.
    My parents say the coolest wedding they've been to was at Brookfield Zoo. We just didn't like their dinner reception options; but I've heard Lincoln Park zoo now does weddings when they didn't before when we were looking.
    My dream venue was Cafe Brauer in Lincoln Park but it was out of our budget. Meson was pretty too but we didn't think they had a big enough area for our cocktail hour.
    We weren't too impressed with Riverside Receptions (too outdated/lodgy we thought), Abbington (another banquet), Cantigny (le jardin reminded us of a school cafeteria), or the Hyatt McDonalds campus (ceiling squares were really falling apart). But my advice is not to just judge online but see the venue in person yourself.
    Good luck! :)
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    princessczprincesscz member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    I had my reception at the Abbington in Glen Ellyn and it was absolutely incredible.  Everyone there was so accommodating, the food was delicious, and the rooms are beautiful, especially for banquet halls.  It also was so wonderful how streamlined their process is.  I felt like I had to have such detailed schedules so that things would get done when they were supposed to during our reception, but the day of the wedding I wondered why I had worried because the staff really knew their stuff and everything from keeping dinner on time, to having a trolley with the gifts for my parents to bring to the car at the end of the night, was really done well.

    I'm sure wherever you have your reception, it will be absolutely wonderful, but I thought I'd tell you about my experience.
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    knthayerknthayer member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    I've heard great things about both places, along with some of the others mentioned here. Also, you should consider Arrowhead Golf Club in Wheaton. I'm getting married at a Naperville church in July, and we're having our reception at Arrowhead. I researched a lot of the places the other girls mentioned (not so much Riverside Receptions and Hotel Baker for distance reasons), and Arrowhead was one of my absolute favorites.

    I'm sure you'll find the place that's right for you. Happy hunting:)
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    edited December 2011
    my sister's wedding was at the abbington in 2003...best wedding i've ever been to!

    our wedding is in march at the hilton lisle/naperville, off of 88.  we needed to have the ceremony and reception in one place, and we couldn't do the ceremony at the abbington on a saturday or that would have been the first choice hands down.

    but i LOVE the hilton!  we looked at a lot of the places on your list, and it is very reasonably priced compared to the rest.  the basic package includes the cake and the flower centerpieces (you basically get a budget to work with your choice of one of two florists).  it also includes wine with dinner, the champagne toast, coat check, candles and mirrors for the centerpieces.  they gave us a pretty reasonable group rate (we're having a lot of guests from out of town) and they have these parlor rooms that we're using to get ready.  we're having the whole weekend there...the rehearsal, the wedding and a sunday brunch.  

    the restaurant is allgauer's, and the food is so good!  the chef has been really willing to work with us to come up with new entree ideas, too.  

    we're looking at somewhere around 200 people, too.  i think the ballroom is really pretty...it doesn't look like a hotel multi-purpose room at all.  even the bathrooms are really pretty!  lol

    you're got a lot of great places to pick from...you can't go wrong!

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    edited December 2011
    Hi - - Your list looks very similar to what mine looked when I started. We absolutely loved Hotel Baker but found it was too pricey and we weren't totally sold on seperating our guests upstairs and downstairs for dinner. I had prom in HS at Riverside so that was out, but it was a good experience and I have always heard good things about it. We checked out Mason Sabika but thought the pricing was outrageous, plus the traffic of downtown Naperville. We checked out the hotels too but ended up realizing we hated hotel banquet halls, so ultimately it will be up to you and your FI. We ended up choosing Prairie Landings Golf Club in West Chicago. The clubhouse is BEAUTIFUL, the pricing reasonable and the staff has been exceptional.
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    edited December 2011
    ^^prairie landing is great, too!  

    my sister's baby shower was there...it was a brunch, so I don't know about the dinner food, but the brunch was great.   
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    edited December 2011
    Thank you all so much!

    Yes, Arrowhead, Danada, Hilton Lisle and Cantigny are all on my list too!

    I will have to check out Prairie Landing- it sounds really nice... and i will def. send you a PM!
    My Planning Website Tied The Knot on 12-4-10! Image and video hosting by TinyPic
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    edited December 2011
    I had the same list of venues as you - I'm from Downers Grove, and I wanted out reception in the west suburbs.  I checked out Hotel Baker, RR, and Prairie Landing GC.  Hotel Baker would be extremely tight for our 200 person wedding and it was the most pricey - so it was out.  It came down to RR and Prairie Landing for me, and what I didn't like about RR was this: it was difficult to find for my parents and aunt who were joining me at the venue.  They got lost 2 times.  Also, there isn't really any outdoor space for your guests.  Yes, you can look at the river, but the outdoor "walkspace" isn't that nice and open to the public.  Both Prairie Landing and RR were about the same price, but I chose Prairie Landing because the views were beautiful and the outdoor patio is awesome (they put lights all around the trees for you).  The wedding coordinator, Cindy, is great! She added several additions to our contract at no additional cost (appetizers, coffee/tea service & beer choice from an outside establishment).  They have been wonderful to work with and I can't wait for my wedding in August!
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    edited December 2011
    Hi, we are doing our wedding at Le Jardin at Cantigny and the staff has been very helpful. The place requires a bit of decorating but the grounds are beautiful and the room can really look amazing with just a little work. However, if I hadn't already signed a contract I would have done Danada house but that is only because I just found out they do kosher caterering. Meson Sabrika had good food but the space was too small for our weddinng (about 250 people). I had a coworker who had her wedding at the Abbington and loved it but I went to prom there senior year so that one was out for me. We wanted the Peggy Notebaert Butterfly Museum for our wedding but it was way to expensive to do a wedding in the city.
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    edited December 2011
    We had a recent fundraiser at the new Crowne Plaza hotel in Glen Ellyn and it was amazing. We'd looked at the Abbington as well, which was nice, but there were some cool lighting features and a wall of flat screen TVs for our slideshow that the facility threw in for free.

    Plus, they are a "green" hotel, which really appealed to us!

    Bet of luck -- I've been to events at the other locations you've mentioned and all were nice.
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    marissamaiermarissamaier member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    teamL09

    I'm also having my wedding at the Danada House, next June. I would love to see your photos after your wedding! I know they just redid all the landscaping and I would love to see what it looks like with a wedding setup. I hope you guys have a gorgeous day!
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