Bars & Restos with Over-the-Top Holiday Decor in Chicago

By Danny Wurst, | December 15, 2016 | Food & Drink

Plenty of places throw a wreath on their doors or hang some stockings, but these bars and restaurants really separate themselves when it comes to getting their Clark Griswold on. Even the biggest Grinch would have to agree that this list of local spots with incredible holiday décor compiled by our friends at Yelp Chicago is a surefire way to get into the holiday spirit.

Baptiste & Bottle

Baptiste & Bottle.

St. Nick is actually guest bartending at this bourbon-centric restaurant in the Conrad Hotel. Order the Naughty Nightcap and a saucy Santa will serve you tableside from their holiday bar cart along with a side of sass. 101 E. Erie St., 312-667-6793

Lost Lake

Ever wondered what spending Christmas with Jimmy Buffett would be like? This beloved Logan Square tiki bar actually transforms into a holiday beach hang called Sippin’ Santa’s Surf Shack. Between the festive decor, tropical-holiday tunes, and potent cocktails served in Santa mugs, it’s the perfect place for holiday cheer. Just don’t get drunk and Scrooge! 3154 W. Diversey, 773-293-6048

Butch McGuire’s

Butch McGuire's.

It would make sense if Butch McGuire was actually one of Buddy the Elf’s alter egos. For more than 50 years, this bar has been known for their holiday decor that’s a spitting image of Santa’s workshop. With double-decker toy trains circling the entire bar and thousands of lights, it only takes one drink to feel like you “know him.” 20 W. Division St., 312-787-4318

Fox Bar @ Soho House

Made famous by MACE in NYC’s East Village, the Miracle pop-up holiday cocktail bar has now come to the West Loop. It’s one of several locations nationwide and has something with a holiday twist for everyone regardless of whether you’re feeling naughty or nice. 113-125 N. Green St., 312-521-8000

Lottie’s Pub


Lottie’s moonlights as the Chicago Fire bar, Molly’s. Kind of ironic considering their holiday lighting setup is so bright that it’s a borderline fire hazard. They’ll be serving themed cocktails up until December 25 so be sure to stop in since you can’t DVR adult beverages. 1925 W. Cortland St., 773-489-0738

I|O Godfrey Rooftop Lounge

A true Christmas miracle is being able to sit on an outdoor patio in Chicago in the middle of December. I|O Godfrey’s rooftop has heated cabana-style igloos set up so you can do just that. Along with Christmas trees and an elaborate light setup, it really is a winter wonderland. 127 W. Huron St., 312-374-1830

Cork and Kerry

This is the one establishment in town you’ll actually be excited to see a rodent near your drink. Each year they decorate with their signature holiday mice that will make you shriek for joy instead of fear. 3258 S. Princeton Ave., 312-842-0769


Danny Wurst is the Sr. Community Director for Yelp in Chicago. Helping businesses get the most out of the site is his passion. He also curates local events intended to spread positive word of mouth for the many local businesses that dot the Chicago culinary landscape. Follow @YelpChicago on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. And use the hashtag #YelpChicago when posting your food p0rn around the web.