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Venue Spotlight

Grand-Scale Events Have a Sophisticated Home in The Geraghty

Olivia Leigh Photographie

As a city celebrated for its big shoulders and some of tallest skyscrapers in the world, it makes sense that Chicago would also play host to venues perfect for grand-scale celebrations. The Geraghty is a sophisticated modern venue with 25,000 square feet of fully-customizable space, complete with luxurious finishes, state-of-the-art technology, and able to accommodate groups up to a thousand.

Its location in the Pilsen neighborhood situates The Geraghty within an epicenter of art and culture. Less than two miles from McCormick Place convention center, the venue is close enough to downtown Chicago to make it convenient for urban bashes but just far enough to feel like an escape.

 

Once the home of a paper mill, the space was large in size but needed serious revamping when acclaimed designer and tastemaker Tom Kehoe found it. Kehoe, the founder of event design and production company Kehoe Designs, was looking to open an event space to round out his business. He named the spot after his mother, Mickey Geraghty, whom he describes as the consummate host and a natural entertainer.

 

Kehoe sat down with industry partners to learn what their greatest challenges were with existing venues throughout Chicago. To that end, he hired acoustical engineers to refine the space for sound and the kitchen is a caterer’s dream. The gorgeous result is thoughtful for event hosts and their vendors.

 

With highly-polished concrete floors and towering ceilings, The Geraghty is a raw space in the traditional sense of the phrase. However, it doesn’t rely on event-specific décor to create glamour and interest, rather it has a style all its own. It’s a well-appointed blank slate.

We love its twenty custom hand-gold-leafed chandeliers that look as if they were spun mid-air into suspended confections and the sixteen-foot windows and skylights that flood the space with natural light. The venue also features a striking statement wall with faux moss and neutral custom-cut overlay that’s immensely photographable.

 

When you’re hosting a large event, practical considerations like the restrooms and parking become key. The Geraghty’s washrooms have luxurious touches like marble countertops, residential-style lighting and artistic installations. Its parking lot is generous.

In photo after photo of events at The Geraghty—from fashion shows and galas to weddings and corporate parties—it’s easy to see how highly customizable the space is. Those gorgeous chandeliers can be placed anywhere in the space. Sixty-four built-in LED lights can be programmed to any color. Provided velour draping and silk olive trees serve to partition the space as needed into more intimate areas or as a sequence of “rooms.” Elegant soft seating throughout includes stylish lounge furniture and can be grouped to create gathering spots. And that focal wall isn’t just beautiful, it’s functional, as it further enhances the acoustics by absorbing sound. The venue includes a VIP Green Room that can be utilized as a luxurious staging spot, for pre- or post-event gathering or as an extra space.

The space combines The Geraghty, Kehoe Designs and their plant division, Floral Exhibits, under one roof which offers greater flexibility for events. With thirteen production groups—from carpentry to fabric and event logistics to technology—hosts at The Geraghty have access to a full suite of custom services and décor to realize any creative vision. 

Raw Space Capacity: 800 (seated) – 1000 (standing) 

VIP Green Room Capacity: 30 (seated) – 50 (standing)

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