Destination Wedding Ideas // Luxury Downtown Chicago Wedding

Allie and Matt wanted a wedding night they’d never forget, and Chicago was the perfect urban setting for their grand affair. These two live life to the fullest, embracing the joy of every moment. If you’re looking for destination wedding ideas, a dazzling cityscape like Chicago may be a great way to experience a new place and have friends and family by your side on your big day.

Chicago destination wedding

Wedding Moment Spotlight | Getting Ready

At each wedding, there’s often a point in the day or a sweet exchange that draws extra attention—something extraordinary. For Allie and Matt’s wedding day, there’s were so many of those, but I just have to point out her getting ready photos with the bridal party. All of the bridal details—rings, shoes, florals—were just phenomenal. And, girl brought props, including confetti that took these shots to the next level! This bride was prepared, and her photos reflect her vibrant creativity. So much fun!!

*Note: If you’re considering the confetti look, I recommend an approved indoor space. I don’t shoot confetti outdoors (unless its biodegradable and not in the city) because of Leave No Trace. I want to make sure it doesn’t harm wildlife or end up in street drains. Plus, we don’t want to ruin shots for others who may come after us. Old confetti just doesn’t photograph well… 

destination wedding ideas

Downtown Chicago Destination Wedding at Pazzo’s

Allie and Matt planned an ultra-luxe wedding at Pazzo’s in downtown Chicago, but they opted for a quieter lifestyle engagement session at their summer home in Wisconsin. It was so much fun seeing both sides of them as a couple. No matter where they are—relaxing at their quiet vacation home or living it up on bustling city streets—their love for each other remains the same. These two are so loved by everyone who knows them, and it’s easy to see why! Their happiness is infectious. Allie and Matt inspire others to live in the moment.

luxury weddings
Hanna Walkowaik; wedding day gifs

Can’t Hold Back Love

Unfortunately, Allie and Matt had to reschedule a few times due to COVID. But you can’t hold back love, and they weren’t about to sacrifice their dream wedding! In fact, it just gave them extra time to make sure every detail was exactly as they wanted it. When the day finally arrived, it was nothing short of spectacular! 

wedding photography; wedding gifs; traditional wedding

Allie and Matt originally planned to do a first look, but with the changes they had to move their ceremony time up.  It ended up working out in their favor because we did their couple’s portraits after their ceremony during golden hour—absolutely breathtaking! 

destination wedding photographer

We also had so much time in between ceremony and reception that the whole wedding party went to the bar for some shots and chicken wings (life to the fullest!) It’s spontaneous moments like these that make a wedding day truly memorable. Don’t get me wrong, I’m in love with their wedding design and overall look, but it’s the emotions and events of the day that lead to phenomenal wedding photos like these. The couple had time to take it slow and enjoy those in-between moments with each other and with friends—just as a wedding day should be.

destination wedding ideas
wedding cheers; Chicago destination wedding; Chicago bars
destination wedding ideas; Hanna Walkowaik photography

I have to give a huge shout out to my shooting partner Jake, who was able to help me capture the best of the entire day with those incredibly cool wide-angle shots. Once the night came to an end, we all felt like lifelong friends. We even had a drink afterward (post-shoot, of course) and shared a few more dances before they called it a night. This wedding was one for the books, and I couldn’t wait to share it with you! I hope you find tons of wedding inspiration in this gallery—their wedding is chock full of great ideas! If you’re looking to plan a similar Chicago destination wedding, I’m happy to share more information and details about their day! Get in touch with me here.

Chicago's wedding venues; Pazzo's

Wedding Vendor Spotlight | Chicago Makeup Artist

Ok, so all of these vendors were fantastic (check ‘em out below), but sometimes the hair and makeup professionals get a little left out between the other major wedding details like florals, cake, and design. My love for Rana Nasif at Lueur Beauty knows no bounds. She is the best wedding makeup artist in Chicago in my opinion—and I’ve done countless bridal portraits. Be sure to add her to your wedding vendor list!

Pazzo's Chicago wedding

Chicago Destination Wedding Vendors

Photography | @hannawalkowaik
Planner | @ohanaeventschi
Beauty | @lueurbeauti
Cake | @oakmillbakery
Floral Design | @juliettanfloraldesign
Caterer | @311pazzos
Reception Site | @311pazzos
Music/DJ | @toastandjamdjs
Brides Dress Designer + Shop | @pronovias & @jadebridalchicago
Groom’s Suit Designer + Shop | @calvinklein & @menswearhouse
Groom’s People Attire | @calvinklein & @menswearhouse
Bride’s People Attire | @azazieofficial
Invitation | @truly.engaging
Videographer | @plan.a.studios
Photo Booth | @photique.co