Whether you're planning a party, a wedding, a business seminar, or a nonprofit event, everything depends on the digs. It's the first decision you make, and it's probably the most important one, too. Could be the difference between people thinking, "Meh" and people thinking, "Holy crap! Whoever planned this is a GENIUS!"
- The occasion: bridal or baby showers; bachelor or bachelorette parties; birthday or anniversary celebrations. ... Heck, maybe it's just an excuse to get together with friends.
- The priority: Good times. Plain & simple.
Exposed brick and pine floors, wood rafter ceiling, natural light, speaker system, and seasonal access to the pubic rooftop bar. Also, this is probably the only place you can get up to 10 Rhinegeist beers on tap. (We'll put in the "plus" column.)
Best for: A big birthday party for the ultimate beer lover in your group.
As we mentioned in our spotlighton this place little while back, MadiBowl would be one heckuva venue for a weekday or weekend party with your crew. Easy to find, surprisingly good beer selection, and hey, it's bowling! Pretty hard not to have a great time bowling.
Best for: A party with friends who you see pretty often (but you want to spice things up by doing something fun at a local place with a good vibe).
Yep, you can have an event at the zoo. All kinds of events, actually. I mean, how fun would it be to have a party with friends while overlooking the Africa exhibit? Or standing eye-to-eye with a giraffe? Both can happen.
Best for: A summertime shindig celebrating someone who a) loves being outside and b) digs zoos.
For smaller events, you can reserve just a deck or a room... But haven't you always wanted to have a party on a boat that's all your own? Travel the Ohio River like they used to do it back in the '90s -- the 1890s, that is.
Best for: This would actually be a really great spot for a class reunion. (There's just something about that whole "no escape" thing that seems like it would work. Right?)
This place has been a hotspot since it opened last year. Not a big surprise -- retro video games and alcohol? Yes, please. It'd be a great place for a party, too. What better way to bond with friends &/or family than by trouncing them at Mario Kart.
Best for: A get-together for old friends -- buds & besties with whom you can reminisce about the good ol' days while playing blast-from-the-past '90s games.
American Sign Museum
Check out our recentprofile on this place, and you'll probably agree: this would be a great place for a party. Imagine all that neon surrounding you and your friends while celebrating that birthday or anniversary.
Best for: An indoor event where you want it to feel like an outdoor event. ... Like a block party in Winter.
Moerlein Lager House
Brewery event space,part deux. The food and drink you know and love, in a space all your own. PLUS a beautiful view of the river. The event space is called the Beer Baron Hall -- who wouldn't want to go to a party there?
Best for: A party in a high-profile, action-packed location (The Banks) with out-of-towners you want to impress.
Green Diamond Gallery
This placeis all about the storied past of America's greatest game. It's filled with rare autographs, jerseys, photographs, and boatloads of other unique, baseball-related things. Check out our spotlight on this Montgomery destination and picture your party with all of that as the backdrop.
Best for: An event to celebrate the biggest baseball fan in your life.(Remember: Good parties get remembered, great parties live forever.)
- Sure, you could choose a downtown hotel, but why not go a off the map a bit? Low-key or bumpin', urban or bucolic, exposed brick or painted plaster, Cincy's got 'it all. And now you do too.
- Priority:Gorgeous, unique nuptials.
Specifically, Mt. Echo Park Pavilion and Ault Park Pavilion. What could possibly be better than getting married in one of these beautiful pavilions on a spring, summer, or fall day? That's the dream right there.
Best for: The outside wedding of your dreams. (Probably best for the those who aren't allergic to pollen or, y'know... anything else.)
This recently renovated, historic German gothic church is all the buzz right now in Cincy's events scene. It's certainly a unique setting -- that flashy, red brick exterior; the high vaulted ceilings; the enormous amount of space. Might be your best bet for a stunning wedding in Over-The-Rhine. And you get Funky's Catering, too.
Best for: The trendiest, hippest, most gorgeous wedding that will end up being the envy of basically everyone you know. (Just imagine...Friends of friends of friends will be sitting at some bar somewhere saying, "Oh yeah, I totally know this one couple that's getting married at that new renovated place downtown.")
Wait wait wait. WAIT. Hold up. You can get married in a castle? Ok, well... Search over, right? Yeah, search over. Take a peak at our profile of the Loveland Castle (a.k.a. Chateau Laroche) and revel in the "Whoa"-ness.
Best for: A wedding for medieval enthusiasts, or reeeally dedicatedGame of Thrones cosplayers.
This Indian Hill event venue is refined, to say the least. Everything about it screams style, class, and elegance. Weddings can be inside or outside (& they'll all be beautiful).
Best for: A wedding for folks who are effortlessly stylish and want something beautifully timeless for their big day.
Bell Event Centre
An experience at Bell Event Centre (located in Pendleton) isn't just about that gorgeous interior. It also has a wonderful cobblestone courtyard. & The lighting package -- which is included in all events, btw -- enhances the vibespectacularly.
Best for: A bride and groom who want some crazy-beautiful interior lighting to go with their crazy-beautiful event venue.
The Taft Museum of Art
I went to a French-picnic-themed wedding here a few years ago and it was outstanding. Long story short: the Taft Museum of Art is downtown, it's unique, and it's supremely memorable.
Best for: Adowntown wedding that solicits the following reaction from guests: "Wait, you can have a wedding at the Taft? Why didn't we think of that?!"
Get married with the fishes! Use the Aquarium's exhibits to add a bit of sea life to your nuptials. (Penguins + weddings... Awesome.) Oh, and if you're searching for a creative way to pop the question, you can always do it with the help of some scuba divers.
Best for: A marine-themed wedding for that couple that just can't get enough of the penguins. (So...everyone? Yep.)
Cincinnati Art Museum
Few places in the city are as iconic as the Cincinnati Art Museum. Those columns are grand as can be, and the lobby offers a great place for a reception. Who wouldn't want to get marred next to all that art?
Best for: Art history majors and art-loving couples who want the best that Cincinnati has to offer, in one of its most famously beautiful venues.
Talk about iconic. It might not be the most traditional venue (as far as weddings go), but its art deco design and soaring features sure are eye-popping. And besides, it's Cincy to the max.
Best for: The wedding that will recall (or reenact) those childhood memories of running around museum exhibits.
We recently profiled this piece and honestly, we couldn't be more impressed with it. This is one of the best views in the city, the venue is top notch, and everyone invited will leave ultra-impressed. It's a terrific place to tie the knot, especially when you consider the carousel above.
Best for: The wedding that will make everyone jealous. It just might be the coolest place in Cincinnati to get married. (But anticipate your guests getting wet. 'Cause everyone is going to want to run through those fountains.)
Like flora, fauna, and butterflies? This might be the venue for you. It's architecturally beautiful, visually stunning, and the plants are sure to intrigue your guests.
Best for: The green-thumbed bride & groom, and those who can weather the wedding chaos... (Get it? Because of the butterflies? Oh, never mind.)
- Shhh, the adults are talking. These are for your business events, charity dinners, and the like. It's all very serious stuff.
- Priority:Having fun while getting things done.
Contemporary Arts Center
This is the place where Bill Clinton just had a fundraiser, so it's probably an okay place to have a nonprofit event of your own. It's modern, it's in the middle of everything, and it's a great way of saying you're killing it without saying that you're killing it.
Best for: Swanky, awesome, best-in-town corporate parties (or fundraising galas) that are as much statements as they are events.
This place is great for offsite meetings and brainstorming or weekday corporate events. It's a converted warehouse, so it sits right at the intersection of modern style and refined minimalism.
Best for: Getting those creative juices flowing by minimizing distractions in a modern space.
The Center Cincinnati
You might know this better as a wedding venue, but we're placing it in this category. Why? Because its location makes it perfect for business meetings and nonprofit events. It's in the heart of Downtown Cincinnati, just minutes from some of the largest corporations in America.
Best for: A business meeting or event that a) has to be downtown and b) has to have an expansive floor plan.
Art Design Consultants
ADC is an art gallery and art consulting firm that can transform into an event venue in a flash. The focus here is the art, which can provide a perfect setting for the nonprofit event and business meetings alike.
Best for: Entertaining and informing in a stunning setting (... one that heavily implies you have a cultivated aesthetic sensibility).
There's a certain no-frills quality about this urban loft space. It's where you get work done. But don't let that fool you into thinking it can't handle a posh event -- because it can.
Best for: Work meetings that are heavy on the Powerpoint presentations. Also: intimate events where modern stylings are a priority.
Located in Over-The-Rhine, BOOST is chock-full of character. Exposed brick, original hard wood floors, tons of natural light. This place will inspire new ways of thinking.
Best for: Showing off Cincinnati's coolest urban neighborhood to your out-of-town business friends.
Located in Covington, Platform 53 is a workspace that's changing the way we work and engage with others. It's not just a place to get things done, its a place to idea-swap and truly connect with others.
Best for: When you need to bang out a concept with some coworkers (and you'd like to do it at a spot that's disrupting the "meeting as usual" game.)
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