Chicago Theatre Week: A Budget-Friendly Theatre Getaway

Every year, Chicago Theatre Week offers deals on Chicago theatre. Read our guide to a budget-friendly getaway to see live performances on a budget.

| words

In a city like Chicago, you're bound to find something for everyone — the sports nuts, the foodies, the history buffs. For the performance art-loving group, a fun-filled weekend discovering the sights and sounds of Chicago's storied theater history is just the ticket.

The best part is that enjoying amazing live performances doesn't have to be expensive. Every year, Chicago Theatre Week offers deals on Chicago theatre, giving you a chance to catch a performance (or two) among Chicago's world-class theatre scene on an affordable Chicago theatre getaway.

Read on to see our tips for taking advantage of Chicago Theatre Week in February.

What to See

With more than 100 performances during Chicago Theatre Week, the world is your oyster. Special discounted pricing for productions from February 7–17 is available, with some tickets as low as $15!

Musicals and Plays

You don't want to miss massive Broadway in Chicago productions and exciting storefront shows featuring local actors. The wealth of musicals and plays during Chicago Theatre Week takes you from the historic Chicago Theater to the neighborhood stages like Theater Wit or A Red Orchid Theatre.

To find a production best suited for you and your group during Chicago Theatre Week, check out The League of Chicago Theatres.


You can't visit Chicago without stopping by The Second City, where actors like Tina Fey, Dan Aykroyd, Tim Meadows and Bill Murray got their start. Laugh your tail off during one of The Second City's hilarious improv performances and immerse yourself in Chicago's historical and authentic comedy scene.

What to Do

To really embrace Chicago's impressive theater scene, take advantage of one of these low-cost or even FREE tours offered around the city!

Chicago Theatre Marquee Tour

You're probably planning to take a selfie by the Chicago Theatre marquee anyway, so why not step inside for this one-hour tour as well? During the free (yep, it's free!) Chicago Theatre Marquee Tour, explore the lobby, orchestra, balconies and even the dressing room, which includes an autographed wall of stars who've performed! Learn all about the Chicago Theatre's history and architectural highlights right down to the chandeliers and the original Grand Wurlitzer pipe organ.

Broadway in Chicago Tours

For less than $20 per ticket, you can tour one of three of Chicago's most famous theatres. Broadway in Chicago will take you on a journey through the Cadillac Palace Theatre, James M. Nederlander Theatre, or the CIBC Theatre, where you'll learn about the vintage decor by notable theatre designers, new technology that boosts the elaborate theater productions, and recent renovations and restorations that have maintained the beauty of these nearly 100-year-old buildings.

Chicago Theater District Tour

Explore the Theater District and some of the most popular and historical venues Chicago has to offer on this free self-guided walking tour. Enjoy the gorgeous architecture of the Chicago Theatre, James M. Nederlander Theatre, Goodman Theatre, Cadillac Palace Theatre, Bank of America Theatre and Auditorium Theatre with this handy guide.

Where to Stay

Chicago Athletic Association Hotel

For a one-stop-shop experience, look no further than the Chicago Athletic Association Hotel. Boasting old-school charm in each room, this hotel offers not only an amazing vibe but also seven on-site bars and restaurants, including the incredible Cindy's Rooftop and Game Room. Embrace vintage Chicago with a modern twist — a stay here is unlike any other and truly unique to the city.

Hampton Inn Majestic Theatre District

Stay in the heart of the Theatre District and put yourself within walking distance of the CIBC Theatre, The Chicago Theatre, Cadillac Palace Theatre, Harris Theatre for Music and Dance, Civic Opera House, and more. Bonus: When you book a stay at Hampton Inn Majestic Theater District, you'll receive a $50 gift certificate to Italian Village as well as a complimentary dessert! Who doesn't love a cheap and delicious meal before a night at the theater?

Where to Eat

Lockwood Restaurant & Bar

This downtown New American restaurant is the perfect pre-show hotspot, located inside the Palmer House Hilton. Sink your teeth into a delicious striploin or sea scallops and save room for dessert - the carrot cake and the ice cream sandwich are both heavenly. Even better - when you show your ticket stub from the play you just saw, Lockwood Restaurant & Bar will give you 20% off your bill!


It doesn't get more "theater" than Petterino's! This downtown Italian mainstay is the perfect place to dine during a weekend in Chicago. With an ambiance that screams classic Chicago theater, Petterino's offers a full traditional Italian menu that includes a la carte options like fettuccine and shrimp alfredo and chicken parmesan, as well as an affordably priced prix fixe menu designed to be enjoyed before heading to the theater. Get lost in the decor as you view the caricatures of actors and celebrities to put you in the theater mood.

Catch 35

Treat yourself to some of the best seafood Chicago has to offer at Catch 35. The extensive menu includes poke bowls, fresh fish, oysters, and steaks that are sure to have you craving seconds. If you're looking for a full, delicious meal while keeping costs down, try Catch 35's special three-course dinner for $37, which includes soup or salad of your choice, an entrée (try the Ecuadorian Mahi Mahi or the Lake Superior whitefish!), and any dessert on their menu. Plan on driving? Show your server your theater ticket from that day's performance and the cost of valet will be deducted from your bill.

Love the Story?
Save to Favorites Remove from Favorites

Related Reads:

Lost in the Garden

Lost in the Garden
in Family FunArts & CultureActivities

Escape to Rockford’s Anderson Japanese Gardens, one of the state’s unexpected oa...

Make a Splash at Illinois' Water Parks

Make a Splash at Illinois' Water Parks

Dive into warmer weather and head to one of Illinois’ most fun and entertaining ...

Enjoy Illinois Magazine

Enjoy Illinois Magazine

Find unexpected ways to enjoy Illinois in this biannual magazine that explores every corner of the state. Each issue offers a mix of travel stories, stunning photography and timely trip ideas that make the most of each season.

Order a Copy

Order a copy of Enjoy Illinois and also receive the Illinois State Park Guide and an Official Highway Map.

Order Print Version
Grab a Digital Copy

Read Enjoy Illinois magazine online or download the PDF and start exploring trip ideas around Illinois.

View it Online Download PDF

Send me Enjoy Illinois Magazine

Get inspired by top travel stories, and discover even more reasons to #EnjoyIllinois.

Order a Copy!