Cool Schools — Our Favorite Iowa Training Centers, Classrooms & Academic Facilities

Your assignment? Study up on the seemingly countless venues where you can host your next training event and learn which ones are the best. If that task seems like too much, we’ve got you covered. We’ve done the homework for you and are giving you a cheat sheet on 8 of the best training centers, classrooms, and academic facilities in Iowa.

1. Stoney Creek Hotel & Conference Center Des Moines

It’s common knowledge that Stoney Creek Hotel & Conference Center Des Moines is simply one of Iowa’s best. The modern facility offers 10,000 square feet of flexible space with 7 amazing meeting rooms for up to 400. The on-site catering team will work with you to create memorable meals. Stoney Creek Hotel also invites guests to relax at the end of the day in any one of their 164 comfortable guest rooms, suites, or extended stay cottages.

2. Arrowwood Resort & Conference Center Okoboji

Located in the charming Iowa Great Lakes Region, Arrowwood Resort & Conference Center Okoboji has stood the test of time. For years, guests have flocked to the get-away that overlooks the gently rolling hills of the Brooks National Golf Club between the shores of West and East Okoboji Lake. Take advantage of its comfy guest rooms, suites, and whirlpool suites, enjoy fine dining in Minerva’s Restaurant, golf, the indoor water playland and whirlpool, and more. Multiple meeting spaces are available with a total of 30,000 square feet of flexible event space for up to 600.  

3. Best Western PLUS Dubuque Hotel & Conference Center

Pop quiz — where can you find a contemporary hotel and conference center with a variety of meeting rooms, a 103-seat tiered theater, and executive boardroom accommodating up to 350? Best Western PLUS Dubuque Hotel & Conference Center, of course. You’ll also find several on-site dining options here, along with stylish guest rooms, indoor heated pool, hot tub, and complimentary breakfast all in the convenient Dubuque area.

4. Bridge View Center

There’s no better place to learn a lesson than the Bridge View Center nestled on the banks of the Des Moines River. Gather in one of multiple meeting spaces with room for up to 664 in the theater or 30,000 square feet in the multi-purpose exposition hall. Offering on-site catering options plus AV equipment and convenient parking.

5. Simpson College Conferences

With facilities in Indianola and West Des Moines, Simpson College Conferences earns an A+ when it comes to convenient amenities and attentive staff. Amazing meeting spaces offer spacious and comfortable surroundings for up to 500 attendees. The Indianola facilities are located on the 75-acre campus, while the West Des Moines Simpson campus offers meeting rooms during daytime hours with free parking available.   

6. Clarion Highlander Conference Center

Looking for class combined with convenience? Look no further than the Clarion Highlander Conference Center located in Iowa City. Featuring 16,000 square feet of meeting space for groups of any size, an on-site restaurant and bar, indoor heated pool and hot tub, free parking, and free WiFi. The Center is conveniently located close to Kinnick Stadium, Amana Colonies National Historic Landmark, and the Lake McBride State Park.

7. Grinnell College Conference Operations and Events

Grinnell College Conference Operations and Events makes choosing your training site as easy as ABC. With contemporary meeting space, on-campus lodging options, catering services, and easily accessible visitor parking, you simply can’t go wrong.

8. Iowa State Center Event & Conference Services at Iowa State University

Iowa State Center Event & Conference Services located on the attractive Iowa State University campus in Ames makes the honor roll when it comes to scenic surroundings, convenient location, and multiple meeting spaces which include Stephens Auditorium, Scheman Building, and Fisher Theater. Scheman Building boasts 25 flexible conference rooms, a 450-seat auditorium, 8,000 square feet of exhibit space, 2,600 square feet covered outdoor space, and full-service catering.

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