When I started planning our first trip to the Quad Cities, I was at a loss on where to stay. The Quad Cities are four cities that are so near each other, you get the feeling it’s just one bigger Midwest city.
We’ve passed stayed in three different Quad Cities hotels now, in three different cities, so now I can at least offer suggestions on where to stay based on your budget or plans. The Quad Cities, for the unfamiliar, are in eastern Iowa and Western Illinois (Davenport, Bettendorf, Rock Island, Moline and East Moline…yes, five cities).
Disclosure: Our stays were hosted by Visit Quad Cities. All thoughts, opinions and typos are my own.
Related post: Plan a trip to the Quad Cities with the help of this post full of family-friendly things to do in the Quad Cities.
You may be familiar with the Element brand – sleek designs with a focus on health and green living. This location is within walking distance of the concert arena, a bike trail, and the John Deere Pavilion, which is a great, free place to visit with kids.
It has a small pool and complimentary breakfast with healthy options. There’s also a happy hour during the week, which may or may not appeal to you when you’re on a family trip.
There are not a whole lot of shops or restaurants within walking distance.
Kids will like: The pool.
Kids won’t like: Our room only had a shower.
Parents will like: The spacious suites that let a family be a little less cramped. Ours had a kitchen, too. There’s also free Wi-Fi. Parking is comped by the hotel.
Good for: Families that like free breakfasts with healthy choices and families looking for a bit more spacious rooms.
Related post: Read more about Element Moline in this hotel review.
My Place Davenport
This is a newly-opened location of the chain My Place. It’s a good option for families on a tight budget.
This location is a short drive from a lot of shopping options and malls. It’s also pretty close to the very fun Family Museum, which will appeal to families with younger children.
Kids will like: Comfy beds.
Kids won’t like: There’s no pool.
Parents will like: How budget-friendly and clean it is. We were looking for a hotel for a stopover for a road trip. We didn’t need much for an overnight, just beds for all of us that were comfortable. Parents might also like the kitchenette with a huge fridge in the room. There’s also free Wi-Fi. Parking is free.
Parents won’t like: There is no complimentary breakfast. You can, however, order breakfast to be delivered to your room. The prices were pretty reasonable, and beat fast food.
Good for: Families on a budget or families making a quick overnight stop.
Hilton Garden Inn Bettendorf
The Hilton Garden Inn was the best fit for our family with amenities we all wanted (especially that hot tub by the pool). It’s in a good location near the interstate so it’s easy to get to places.
It’s within an easy drive–or if you’re feeling up to it, an easy walk–to some restaurants like Pizza Ranch and Starbucks. It’s also not far from one of the breakfast places we went to on our Quad Cities weekend trip, Jimmy’s Pancake.
What kids will like: The pool is the biggest of the two hotels that had them, plus it has a hot tub. Kids will like the fresh, homemade cookies at check in, too.
What parents will like: The cozy lobby, that hot tub I mentioned, and the free coffee in the lobby. There’s also a bar and restaurant in the lobby.
What parents won’t like: No complimentary breakfast. The hotel restaurant in the lobby looks like it would be included, but expect to pay for that buffet. Kids are half-price, though.
Things to look forward to in Quad Cities in 2019
Museum updates: The Buffalo Bill Museum in LeClaire has anew addition housing a replica 1920s interior of a one-room school house. The Putnam Museum & Science Center in Davenport opens “RACE: Are We So Different” in January. The German American Heritage Center in Davenport opens an exhibit on the Schweibert Family in March. The Figge Art Museum opens an exhibit on Tiffany’s stained-glass windows, vases, lamps and accessories on Feb. 16 and running through May 19. The Family Museum has a summer exhibit running June 8 throughSept. 8 called “Run! Jump! Fly! Adventures in Action!”
Drink updates: Bootleg Hill Honey Meads just opened in downtown Davenport, serving a variety of meads and craft drinks.
Additional things to look out for in 2019: Quad Cities Air Show returns after a two-year break in 2019. The show will be June 29 and 30. The 100th Mississippi Valley Fair is July 30 through Aug. 3. The 2019Grand Stand acts include Brad Paisley, Jake Owen, Tesla and Dan + Shay. Snowstar has a new zipline course, with one zipline that’s 1,300 feet long. The world’s largest truck stop, Iowa 80 Truckstop, is near the Quad Cities and it has recently finished a $10 million expansion and remodel project. Look for the antique trucks added to the main entry. Quad Cities got a new hockey team, theQuad City Storm, in 2018. Playing in the Southern Professional Hockey League, the season runs October through April.
Looking for free things to do with kids in the Quad Cities? Read this post!
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