Looking for a place to dance the night away, listen to music, watch sports, have dinner or try a new craft beer? House of Music & Entertainment, which opened in November, offers all that and more, striving to be a place where the over-21 crowd can drink and dance late, late into the night. It's on Rand Road in Prospect Heights, with an Arlington Heights address.
Motif: The huge space is divided into two different venues. The front area features a DJ booth and 60 flat-screen TVs around the bar and on the walls that show sports, UFC fights and abstract videos when music is playing. There's also a pair of pool tables, a hunting video game and a shuffleboard table. There are a few scattered tall tables, along with large booths around the perimeter that are reserved for groups doing bottle service or taking advantage of the table taps, which pour a variety of beer and spirits such as Jameson and Don Julio. Walls are lined with sports memorabilia and framed newspaper sports pages.
1227 N. Rand Road, Arlington Heights, (847) 577-4663, homebarchicago.com
Hours: 11 a.m. to 3 a.m. Sunday through Thursday; 11 a.m. to 4 a.m. Friday and Saturday
The 15,000-square-foot theater space in back includes a 28-by-30-foot stage that has been used to host bands as well as wrestling matches and even, um, exotic male dancers.
The space features two more bars and booths for VIPs or groups getting bottle service.
Crowd: The House of Music & Entertainment -- also known as H.O.M.E. -- is busiest Friday and Saturday nights, though it's quieter during the summer when many music lovers are at local festivals. When we arrived at 10 p.m. Saturday night, it was hard to find a seat. By 11, things were bustling with a young, well-dressed crowd taking advantage of the open space by milling around with drinks or dancing. Demographics vary depending on the entertainment, ranging from college students on up.
Food: The menu has a Southwestern flavor, with H.O.M.E. rolls -- deep-fried chimichangas sliced like sushi -- serving as the signature dish. The Arizona roll is a particularly tasty version with chunks of grilled steak, pico de gallo and cream cheese filling the crispy rolls that are drizzled with hot sauce. You can also get a dessert version filled with ice cream and caramel, rolled in cinnamon and drizzled with chocolate sauce.
Liquid consumption: Craft beer is the focus with 40 brews on tap. There's also a full cocktail menu offering all the standards along with a few more novel sippers like a spiced pear martini made with pear vodka, sour mix and pineapple juice served in a cinnamon-rimmed glass. Drink specials include $5 mimosas Sundays and $4 bombs Thursdays.
Music: House of Music & Entertainment always brings in a DJ Friday and Saturday nights. On the live music side, they've hosted plenty of local bands along with national groups like Naughty by Nature and Chevelle. While you'll find higher prices for bigger acts, the cover is usually $5 and doesn't start until 11 p.m.
Service: The bar is staffed by attractive young women dressed in very short shorts, tight shirts and tall black boots. They're more than just eye candy, though, as we found them friendly and happy to make recommendations as we perused the menu.
Parking: There are plenty of spots in the large free lot.
Overall: Open until 4 a.m. on weekends and geared to people who want to drink, dance and be noticed, the House of Music & Entertainment isn't your typical suburban bar.