Cincinnati is lucky to have a lot of really great wedding venues in and around the downtown area. Many of these spaces are in beautiful historic buildings that have been recently renovated and updated. Others are in striking modern buildings that let visitors appreciate the beauty off both the built and natural environment around downtown. Below, we’ve compiled what is, in our opinion the top ten venues in or near downtown Cincinnati, including Over-the-Rhine, Pendleton, and Mt. Adams.
1.) Bell Event Center, 444 Reading Rd, Cincinnati
The Bell Event Center is located in a historic church in the Pendleton neighborhood. The historic building has a European feel, with a beautiful courtyard in front for great photo shoots. The space can accommodate 250 people for both wedding and reception, or 300 for a reception only. Nearby after-party options include the casino and various bars in Pendleton and OTR. Catering is provided by Bell.
Website | 513-852-2787
2.) Monastery Event Center, 1055 St. Paul Pl, Cincinnati
The Monastery Event Center is a brand new venue, having its first events in late 2015. It’s located in the old Holy Cross Church at the top of Mt. Adams, perched above and just east of the downtown core. It’s been completely renovated after sitting unused for decades, and now is brought back to its old beauty. While Mt. Adams has a reputation for difficult parking, there is ample free parking nearby, with a parking lot and parking garage on-site. Besides the beautiful architecture, you have use of the grounds for photo ops, which has a great view of downtown, the river, and hills of Kentucky. Nearby after-party options include the many bars and restaurants on St. Gregory, 1 block away.
Website | 513-888-8694
3.) The Phoenix
The Phoenix is another historic building downtown with beautiful ballrooms and rooms, amazing architectural details, plenty of space, and convenient location in central downtown. The catering is provided in-house and is relatively affordable (pdf warning), starting at just $74/person. It’s within walking distance of many downtown hotels for out-of-town guests, and there are plenty of afterparty locations within 2-4 blocks as well.
Website | 513-721-8901
4.) The Renaissance Hotel
The Renaissance has a beautifully renovated reception hall in the heart of downtown Cincinnati. On the second floor of the building with a soaring 40 foot tall, intricate barrel vaulted ceiling, it is one of the most beautiful spaces in downtown. Catering and bar service is provided by the hotel. Being in the heart of downtown, Fountain Square is just a couple blocks away, as well as plenty of other options in downtown, OTR, and Mt. Adams.
Website | 513-333-0000
5.) The Cincinnati Contemporary Art Museum
Little known fact: the CAC now has free admission, so you can check out this funky event space without scheduling a tour! The spacious lobby, with space for over 200 people, can host not just the reception but the wedding too. Located in the heart of downtown, the lobby (as well as a couple basement spaces) are available for rent for your event and is one of the two “statement” venues in downtown (the second is next) in my opinion.
Website | 513-345-8415
6.) Music Hall
Music Hall, as of this writing, is closed for renovation until October 2017. However, with many weddings booking spaces a year out, it’s worth mentioning here. Most weddings use the lobby of Music Hall with its amazing foyer with marble floors, amazing artwork, and historic details. Due to the renovation, information on caterers, pricing, and what changes might occur to the interior are up in the air.
Website | 513-744-3242
7.) Cincinnati Museum Center
Imagine having your wedding and reception in the enormous rotunda of the Cincinnati Museum Center. Well known for being the inspiration of the Hall of Justice of comics fame, the Museum Center is an iconic treasure, and one of the most beautiful buildings in the city. While it’s a little bit out of the way for after-party nightlife compared to some places, there will be ample, convenient parking for your guests. All events are required to use one of three pre-selected caterers, though outside cake and dessert providers are allowed.
Website | 513-621-3326
8.) The Freedom Center
Another museum near the riverfront, most people don’t know it has fantastic spaces for rent or you can literally rent the entire museum space (after hours of course)! There is ample parking available in the Riverfront Garage, and of course ample afterparty locations in the Banks. The Freedom Center has three caterers to choose from – eat well, Elegant Fare and McHale’s Catering.
Website | 513-333-7536
9.) Memorial Hall
Next door to Music Hall is Cincinnati Memorial Hall. As of this writing, Memorial Hall reopened after a huge, multi-million dollar renovation. While I haven’t seen the inside yet myself, the updated interior looks amazing in photos. Memorial Hall has been one of the top wedding venues in all of Cincinnati in the past, and I’m sure it will just get better with these updates.
Website | 513-621-4400
10.) Christian Moerlein Lager House
The Moerlein Lager House has one of the smaller venues available, with seating for about 100 people and obviously has one choice for a caterer (but the food is so good!). However with its fantastic location on the river, across from the expanding Smale Riverfront Park and easy parking in the enormous garage underground (though check the Reds and Bengals schedule before picking the date), its definitely worth a mention. Plus if beer is your thing, the dozens and dozens of taps here are hard to beat. For afterparty activities, there’s plenty of nightlife in The Banks, and downtown and Mt. Adams are a short trip away.
Website | 513-421-2337 ext. 20
Flash Cube Photo Booths is located just outside downtown Cincinnati and is able to delivery to any of these locations. Our full-sized booth breaks down to fit any of these venues – up stairs, down halls, and more – unlike some other company’s booths. So once you pick out one of the great centrally located venues Cincy has to offer, give us a call for your event!
Did we miss a venue that you think should have been included. I readily admit this isn’t a comprehensive list, so let me know in the comments what venues you think should be listed as the best near downtown Cincinnati. If we get enough submissions, we might put together another list.