3 Downtown Hotels that Every #MKECouple Should Know

Intercontinental Milwaukee Wedding

Make sure to check out some of Milwaukee’s awesome downtown hotels for your wedding.
Photo by Front Room Photography

In our opinion, weddings downtown are awesome. There’s no better way to show off your city than to actually have your wedding IN the city. When looking at your wedding venue options, make sure to check out some of downtown Milwaukee’s hotels.

Benefits of a Hotel Wedding

As they say, “your ride home is the elevator” when doing a hotel wedding. And if you’re downtown and the party leaves the hotel, night life is a short walk or cab ride away. There’s also something great about having all of your family and friends stay in the same place – from after parties in the rooms, to brunch gift openings in the morning – everything becomes a little easier.

For this article we take a look at three downtown hotels – The Hilton Milwaukee City Center, The InterContinental, and The Pfister Hotel. Each property is part of Marcus Hotels and Resorts, a Milwaukee-based company whose employee motto is “make your ordinary day someone’s extraordinary day” – how cool is that?!

1. The Hilton – Milwaukee’s Downtown Art Deco Hotel

We’ll start with The Hilton. This historic Art Deco hotel has grown in popularity among Milwaukee couples over the past few years, and with good reason. The Hilton is a beautiful, historic hotel with capacity to host weddings as large as 500, but intimate enough for a smaller guest list too.

Hilton Milwaukee Wedding

The Hilton in downtown Milwaukee is a historic Art Deco hotel with modern, updated amenities. Left photo by Front Room; Right photos by Craig John Photography

A little known space available to brides and grooms is an outdoor patio called 6th and Green – that can hold up to 400 for a seated ceremony.

Nestled just behind the Hilton hotel, 6th and Green is a great downtown outdoor ceremony space that has a perfect indoor backup plan if it rains on your wedding day. Its simple gazebo and stone pathway make it a great space for an outdoor ceremony or cocktail reception.

Downtown Milwaukee Outdoor Ceremony Location

The Hilton’s 6th and Green is perfect for an outdoor ceremony for up to 400 people or an outdoor cocktail reception. Photo by Emily Johnson / Wedding Planner Dare to Dream

The Crystal Ballroom at the Hilton is named for its beautiful chandeliers that hang from the expansive 22 foot tall ceilings. It can seat groups of 200 people up to 500 people for dinner.

Crystal Ballroom - Milwaukee Downtown Hilton

The Crystal Ballroom is the crown jewel at the Hilton in Downtown Milwaukee.
Photos by Craig John Photography

The Empire Ballroom at the Hilton is another Art Deco wedding space in Milwaukee and can host up to 350 people for dinner. It boasts 30 foot tall ceilings and unique tri-level seating area.

Art Deco hotel Milwaukee wedding venue

The Empire Ballroom at the Hilton in downtown Milwaukee can seat up to 350 people for dinner. Photos courtesy of Marcus Corp.

The Hilton has many restaurants in its space including Milwaukee Chop House, Miller Time Pub, and Hilton Cafe. All can be great spaces for rehearsal dinners or morning after brunches.

Photo opportunities are plentiful in this beautiful historic Art Deco hotel.

Art Deco Hotel - Downtown Milwaukee - Weddings

Art Deco accents are plentiful throughout the Hilton and make for amazing photo ops.
Left photos by Emily Johnson / Right photo by Front Room

In addition, a new space was opened by the Hilton called The Monarch Lounge. This space is generally not available for private rental; however, guests have been known to enjoy this space during your room flip from ceremony to reception.

2. The InterContinental – A Modern Wedding Hotel

The InterContinental is located in the heart of downtown Milwaukee and has a modern, contemporary style that’s different than the other hotels we mention here.

Intercontinental - Milwaukee wedding venue

The Intercontinental Hotel in downtown Milwaukee is a perfect backdrop for a modern wedding. Photo by Andy Stenz

From its large ballroom to an intimate art gallery, the InterContinental is a perfect setting for small and large gatherings. Its central downtown location makes it a perfect spot for your out of town guests to experience Milwaukee in all its glory.

The InterContinental’s Grand Salon is a great backdrop for a modern wedding ceremony and seats up to 400. With its chocolate-colored walls and uniquely elegant lighting fixtures, this space isn’t your typical hotel ballroom.

InterContinental Milwaukee - Modern Hotel Wedding

The InterContinental’s Grand Salon seats a maximum of 400 and is a perfect back drop for a modern wedding. Photos by Front Room

The InterContinental’s Lobby Salon is an intimate ballroom that is available for a party of 120 or less. As it opens to the hallway across from the art gallery, Gallery M, it works well for an intimate ceremony, with easy room flip options to transition to the reception.

Intercontinental Hotel - Milwaukee Wedding Ceremony

The Lobby Salon opens to the lobby for ease of access and seats a max of 120.
Photos by Front Room

The InterContinental has an art gallery space – Gallery M – just off the lobby of the hotel. This space is perfect for cocktail hour, rehearsal dinners, bridal showers, and day after brunch and/or gift openings to seat from 60 – 70 people.

The InterContinental Hotel has arguably one of the coolest hotel lobbies in downtown Milwaukee. Sweet photo ops are plentiful in the lobby as well as fun and unique entertainment with a ping pong table and great drinks at the Clear bar. Be sure to check out the lounge space (formerly known as zenden) and indoor bocce ball too!

Intercontinental Milwaukee - Hotel lobby bar

The InterContinental Milwaukee has a great hotel lobby for photo ops with drinks AND ping pong! Photos by Andy Stenz

As the InterContinental is located on a prime intersection in downtown Milwaukee, photo opportunities abound both indoor and outdoors all within very short walking distances.

The Milwaukee City Center building is directly attached to the InterContinental. The massive skylights two stories above, ample staircases and lighted hallways make it perfect for photo opportunities during inclement weather.

Milwaukee Wedding Indoor Photo Locations

The Intercon is connected to the Milwaukee City Center and is just outside from the Riverwalk. Left Photos – Front Room / Right Photos – Andy Stenz

3. The Pfister Hotel – Historic Elegance

We’ve featured weddings at the Pfister Hotel previously and we absolutely love the space, the history and the options offered.

The Pfister’s three ballrooms (Imperial, Rouge, and Grand Ballroom) can host small and large weddings up to 600 guests. The three ballrooms occupy the 7th floor of the hotel and options exist to utilize the entire space.

Dynamic Events by David Caruso Pfister Wedding

This wedding as planned by Dynamic Events by David Caruso took place in the large Grand Ballroom of the Pfister Hotel. Photo by Front Room

When bringing guests to visit Milwaukee, Blu is a must see stop if for the view alone. Blu sits atop the Pfister hotel on the 23rd Floor and is a beautiful space.

Inquire about gift openings, brunch and bridal showers in Blu. Your out of town guests will love the cool vibe and amazing views of the city’s skyline!

Blu at the Pfister - Wedding Cocktail Hour

Blu boast some of the best views of downtown Milwaukee. Photos by Front Room

The Pfister’s lobby is an impressive sight. It is unlike any hotel lobby in Milwaukee and is sure to wow your guests. The lobby includes a lounge bar, an artist in residence art gallery, an upscale beauty salon (Well Spa + Salon), Cafe at the Pfister and entrance to one of Milwaukee’s top restaurants – Mason Street Grill.

Pfister Hotel Milwaukee - Private room Mason Street

Pfister hotel lobby (left); The Rouge (top right); and The Pfister Room at Mason Street Grill seats 50-60 people. Photos courtesy of Marcus Corp.

Many of the spaces at the Pfister can be utilized for your wedding day weekend. From your rehearsal dinner at Mason Street Grill to your morning after brunch at The Rouge to cocktails at Blu.

The Pfister hotel is also located in a hot area of downtown Milwaukee with lots of activity and close attractions to walk to. Perfect for your out of town guests.

The Benefits of Working with All Three Hotels

Since all three hotels we discussed are owned by Marcus, there are benefits if you’d like to utilize the different properties for your wedding weekend. Say you’d like room blocks at The Pfister and the Hilton – just ask. Want to do your ceremony at The Hilton and your reception at the InterContinental – they can make it work.

Marcus Weddings

The Marcus Properties: The Pfister, The InterContinental and The Hilton are all conveniently located in downtown Milwaukee. Photos by Front Room

When booking at the Marcus properties, you’ll work with the same event staff so they won’t push you off to someone else. Also, be sure to ask if there are discounts available for multiple event bookings within the properties.

For more information, check out www.MarcusWeddings.com

Photography Love

Like the photos in this article? Then please show some love to these photographers who helped us out with them: Andy Stenz Photography, Craig John Photography, Front Room Photography and Emily Johnson Photography.