An Insider's Guide to Visiting Brookfield

Thinking of visiting Brookfield? Here’s what you need to know.

If you’re in the market for a new dress, business suit – or just about any other purchase – Brookfield likely comes to mind. And with good reason: The suburb is home to 3 million square feet of retail. But don’t limit your thoughts to shopping. Brookfield boasts 150 dining options and numerous entertainment venues, says Nancy Justman, president and CEO of Visit Brookfield.

One huge shift is in the number of options after dark. It’s no longer just about movies – although the new 40,000-square-foot Movie Tavern by Marcus is a stunner. The first to open in Wisconsin, WhirlyBall offers games of laser tag, bumper cars and bowling, plus dining, all under one roof.

Business groups, too, are attracted to Brookfield for the unconventional meeting space at WhirlyBall as well as (once it opens in April) the Brookfield Conference Center attached to Hilton Garden Inn on the south end of Brookfield Square. With 54,000 square feet that includes two ballrooms, meeting attendees and wedding guests are not far from dining, shopping and other entertainment.

Whether you crave a day trip from the city for some shopping – “from big-box stores to boutiques,” says Justman, adding that many offer extended hours come December – or want to meet friends for lunch in a new-to-you destination, definitely look to Brookfield with fresh eyes.

Add a Taste of Germany to the Holidays

Bringing a touch of a Bavarian Christmas to Wisconsin, the German Holiday Market kicks off Dec. 7 with a tree lighting in the outdoor parking lot at City Hall. This also commemorates Brookfield’s sister city relationship with Seligenstadt, Germany. Shop ornaments and décor from Germany, or kick back with Glühwein (spiced wine served hot).

The Holiday Gift-Giving Guide

Find something for everyone (yes, even your picky sister) in Brookfield as you check off items on your list.

For the foodie in your life

Pull together a custom gift basket with cute, seasonal fabric napkins from Sendik’s, throw in a chocolate bar and wedge of Wisconsin artisanal cheese, then pick out a bottle of specialty olive oil or balsamic vinegar at From Olives to Oil.

 For your sweetheart

Score a soft and cozy robe for the person who has your heart at Allure Intimate Apparel, at Galleria West Shopping Center. Not sure what size or color? An Allure gift card solves that problem or can be used to take the hassle out of bra shopping (includes free professional bra fitting).

 For the drama queen in your life

Hand her stress over to Azana Salon and Spa’s masseuses, who will get the kinks out in no time and help her face the holidays feeling cool, calm and relaxed.

For the arts lover in your life

From live music to performing arts, a gift certificate to Sharon Lynne Wilson Center for the Arts lets the culture lover choose an ideal night out.

For mom

The reason for your existence deserves a cool statement accessory, no? Twigs has you covered, with gold initial necklaces and necklaces with arrowhead pendants, or a classic link chain. M.E. Lou, at Galleria West Shopping Center, sells everything from Quay sunnies to whimsical socks. 

 For the fashionista in your life

Scour the racks at Clothes Mentor for consignment designer duds, accessories and handbags, like stylish Dolce & Gabbana sunglasses or a cozy Free People sweater.

 For the sports fan in your life

A new set of barstools might be needed to watch the game in one’s home bar, so drop by Barstool Central and then pick up a gift card to WhirlyBall, where the game is always on in the restaurant.

For your BFF

Head over to The Corners of Brookfield and gift a set of pampering, restorative skin care products from Bonness Skincare for your trusty sidekick in life.

Plan the Perfect Date Night

Whatever kind of fun and sizzle you and your honey are in the mood for, Brookfield has it.

If you’re looking to break a sweat …

… try Vinyasa or Bikram class (5 and 5:30 p.m. Fridays) at Hot Yoga Milwaukee’s Brookfield studio, followed by a cool-down dinner of spicy tuna bowls (ahi tuna with sriracha aioli, tobiko and jalapeño) at FreshFin Poke at The Corners of Brookfield.

If you’re looking for a romantic meal …

… try a bottle of wine and New York-style pizza baked in a brick oven (translation: crispy crust) at this offshoot of Brooklyn-based Grimaldi’s, at The Corners of Brookfield, or heaping plates of pasta (lobster ravioli, perhaps?) at Bravo Cucina Italiana at Brookfield Square.

If you’re looking for a new food-and-drink experience …

… try pints of beer (selections include Cherry Lambic and Black Rooster, a slightly sour stout) at Biloba Brewing Co. Continue the evening with some of BelAir Cantina’s quirky tacos, like the “Karate Kid” featuring tempura-fried grasshoppers.

If you’re looking for an adrenaline rush …

… try zipping around in electric-powered Whirlybugs (they’re like bumper cars) at WhirlyBall, followed by ripping up the dance floor to live music at Saloon on Calhoun with Bacon.

If you’re looking for a wallet-friendly evening …

… try the free shows at Sharon Lynne Wilson Center for the Arts’ Ploch Art Gallery, then chat up your impressions over hot dogs, cheese fries and chocolate-cake shakes at the cult favorite, fast-casual Portillo’s, out of Chicago since 1963.

Brookfield Business Directory

Allure Intimate Apparel

18900 W.  Bluemound Rd. / 262-641-1080

A lingerie boutique selling high-quality bras for women of every shape, size, and age in a variety of well-fitting styles.The store also carries pajamas, robes and shapewear.

Azana Salon and Spa

200 N. Moorland Rd. / 262-784-4700

If you need some pampering, Azana has your body covered, from hair to nails to waxing, massaging and facials.

Barstool Central

13665 W. Capitol Dr. / 262-754-8989

This family-owned and -operated business showcases a large selection of barstools, counter stools and pub tables.

BelAir Cantina

250 High St. / 262-784-4938

The tacos served here are in the style of L.A. taco trucks; the margaritas are made with freshly squeezed lime juice.

Biloba Brewing Co.

2970 N. Brookfield Rd. / 262-309-5820

Catch up with friends in the taproom and fill your growler at this microbrewery focusing on crafting unique beers.

Bonness Skincare

20107 N. Lord St. Suite H103 / 262-505-6622

The certified skin care experts guide you in choosing a personalized regimen, with products backed by years of clinical research.

Bravo! Cucina Italiana

95 N. Moorland Rd., A 147 / 262-785-0858

Bravo’s distinctive Roman ruin décor provides a relaxed setting for the made-to-order Italian dishes.

Clothes Mentor

18000 W. Bluemound Rd. / 262-784-2650

This upscale women’s resale store will pay you immediately (unlike consignment shops) for gently used clothes and accessories.

From Olives to Oil

17125 W. Bluemound Rd. / 262-786-3000

Along with its exquisite collection of olive oils, the store sells balsamic vinegars, sauces, seasonings and beauty products. Holiday gift boxes are available.

Galleria West  Shopping Center

18900 W.  Bluemound Rd. 

Here you’ll find a mix of shopping: boutiques, crafts, gourmet treats and more. Don’t forget to check the flavor of the day at Kopp’s.


20119 Lord St., J-101 / 262-785-1115

The pizzeria uses  fresh ingredients, a secret sauce and a coal-fired oven to dish out tasty New York-style pies.

M.E. Lou

18900 W. Bluemound Rd., Suite 115 / 262-782-1212

The locally owned specialty women’s retailer offers distinctive clothing and accessories  from casual to occasion. Its employees provide an informative, comfortable and honest approach, leaving you feeling confident and beautiful.

Saloon on Calhoun with Bacon

17000 W. Capitol Dr. / 262-783-0222

Often called the “Cheers” of  Brookfield, this sports bar and restaurant also hosts live music. And yes, expect plenty of bacon-infused food and drink.

Sendik’s at the Corners of Brookfield

20222 Lower  Union St. / 262-439-8930

A recently opened expansion of the grocery store’s flagship location in The Corners includes a mezzanine lounge and a bistro area, as well as a 7,000-square-foot Sendik’s Home store.

Sharon Lynne Wilson Center

19805 W. Capitol Dr. / 262-781-9520

The Wilson Center showcases performances by world-renowned artists in theater,
music and dance. It also offers arts education opportunities and curates an art gallery. showing national and Wisconsin-based
fine artists.

The Corners of Brookfield

20111 W. Bluemound Rd.

The Corners is home to 400,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space, anchored by Von Maur and Sendik’s. It also hosts numerous outdoor events throughout the year, including food truck tours, music and viewing parties.

The Jar

200 N. Moorland Rd. / 262-649-4480

From-scratch delightful desserts in 4- to 16-ounce containers include Turtle Brownie Cheesecake, Death by Chocolate and Banana Bread Brownie. You can customize the label for the appropriate gift-giving occasion.

Warren Barnett Interiors

14755 W. Capitol Dr. / 262-790-1111

Award-winning interior designers handpick high-quality furniture and accessories to create living spaces that suit your style.


185 S. Moorland Rd. / 262-786-7777

This team sport is a fusion of bumper cars, hockey, lacrosse and basketball. If WhirlyBall isn’t your thing, there are bowling lanes, laser tag and a full-service restaurant and bar to keep you fed and entertained.

Wisconsin Vision

285 Market St. / 262-785-9393

The eye care center welcomes new patients and walk-ins on weekdays and Saturdays. Or you can schedule an appointment online.



A seasoned writer, and a former editor at Milwaukee Home & Fine Living, Kristine Hansen launched her wine-writing career in 2003, covering wine tourism, wine and food pairings, wine trends and quirky winemakers. Her wine-related articles have published in Wine Enthusiast, Sommelier Journal, Uncorked (an iPad-only magazine),, and Whole Living (a Martha Stewart publication). She's trekked through vineyards and chatted up winemakers in many regions, including Chile, Portugal, California (Napa, Sonoma and Central Coast), Canada, Oregon and France (Bordeaux and Burgundy). While picking out her favorite wine is kind of like asking which child you like best, she will admit to being a fan of Oregon Pinot Noir and even on a sub-zero winter day won't turn down a glass of zippy Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc.