10 Must-See Motor City Venues

From historic theaters to repurposed firehouses, we can't get enough of these can't-miss Detroit gems.
by Rachel Sylvester
Detroit Institute of Arts
Jess & Nate Studios

Ford Piquette Avenue Plant

461 Piquette Ave., Detroit; (313) 872-8759; Ford Piquette Avenue Plant

History buffs will love this former automobile plant-turned-urban-industrial space that dates all the way back to 1904. Not only is the lofted national historic landmark the birthplace of the iconic Ford Model T, it also acts as both a museum and event space ideal for one-of-a-kind weddings. Exchange vows in the Milwaukee Junction Room for a ceremony that comfortably seats 100 guests, and celebrate with a reception in the Stationary Assembly Room, which accommodates up to 250.

Coach Insignia

200 E. Jefferson Ave., GM Renaissance Center, Detroit; (313) 567-2622; Coach Insignia

Nestled 72 stories above the city, atop the towering Renaissance Center, this expansive, split-level steak house is a no-brainer for to-be-weds searching for an unparalleled panorama. Host private events for up to 16 guests, or take advantage of the entire 71st floor with sweeping views of downtown Detroit, for a reception that can accommodate over 400. The only detail more impressive than the window-lined walls over the cityscape? An on-site wine cellar that boasts more than 1,000 bottles. Cheers!

Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit

4454 Woodward Ave., Detroit; (313) 832-6622; MOCADetroit.org

Located in the heart of Detroit's cultural center, this former auto dealership features 22,000 square feet of open space divvied up into three galleries, a video theater and a café. Say “I do" in the spacious Woodward Gallery, which comfortably fits close to 300 people, or celebrate in either the South or East Gallery, both of which accommodate 100 seated dinner guests. For an additional fee, couples can even utilize the on-site café for access to four different beverage packages, glassware rentals and signature cocktails.

Cliff Bell's

2030 Park Ave., Detroit; (313) 961-2543; Cliff Bell's

Award-winning cocktails and custom catering packages are just two reasons foodies will obsess over this historic barturned-jazz club. Rent the single-story space for seated dinners of 150, or opt for strolling receptions for a more robust guest list of 300. There's no need to search high and low for entertainment options, since the rental fee includes stage lighting, a sound technician, video projection and assistance with booking live bands.

Detroit Institute of Arts

5200 Woodward Ave., Detroit; (313) 833-7900; DIA.org

When it comes to this 658,000-squarefoot beaux arts building, the question isn't when to book but rather where to start. In addition to open-air courts, a 1,150- seat auditorium and over 100 galleries, this mainstay features more than a dozen available rooms to rent. Our favorites include an opulent strolling celebration in the museum's Great Hall for up to 500 guests, and a seated reception for 160 in the center of Prentis Court.

The Garden Theater

3929 Woodward Ave., Detroit; (313) 832-0888; The Garden Theater

Searching for a historic venue with enough space to fit nearly 1,200 standing guests? Okay, even if your guest list isn't quite that large, you'll love this newly renovated, 32,000-square-foot Midtown space. Designed in 1912 by the same architect behind Detroit's Fox Theatre, this C. Howard Crane structure recently underwent a multimillion-dollar renovation that included the installation of ornate light fixtures along with a brandnew bar and state-of-the-art sound system.

The Eastern

3434 Russell St., Detroit; (313) 914-1104; TheEasternDetroit.com

Polished concrete floors, 18-foot ceilings and exposed brick walls make this former firehouse ideal for to-be-weds in search of a raw space. With an outdoor patio and enough room to accommodate 225 guests for a sit-down affair, the 5,000-square-foot space also has wireless speakers, valet parking, vintage furniture and a stunning bar made from reclaimed materials.

Colony Club Detroit

2310 Park Ave., Detroit; (313) 463-4215; The Colony Club Detroit

With gilded ceilings, ornate chandeliers and impressive arched windows, this historic venue (and former women's club) can accommodate up to 400 guests on the venue's third floor and a total of 150 in the fourth-floor ballroom. Two more reasons to love the space: an expansive hardwood floor ideal for dancing, and a variety of inclusive wedding packages.

The Fillmore Detroit

2115 Woodward Ave., Detroit; (313) 961-5451; The Fillmore Detroit

Detroit's go-to music venue is much more than a place to catch the latest concert. The theater—which dates back to 1925—is spacious enough to accommodate up to 400 guests looking to rock. And with a hardwood dance floor, chandeliers and an 80-foot ceiling, what's not to love?

Detroit Athletic Club

241 Madison Ave., Detroit; (313) 963-9200; Detroit Athletic Club

This 100-year-old club takes the guesswork out of planning thanks to in-house catering, cake, tabletop, lodging and sommelier services. Choose from 10 available rooms, including a pavilion rooftop or main dining room that features hand-painted ceiling beams and enough room to comfortably fit 260 guests.

Find a stand-out venue in your city here!

Up Next
10 Most Talked-About Michigan Wedding Venues
You've heard the hype -- now get the scoop on these top Michigan wedding reception sites.
by The Knot4 min read