The Best Getting Ready Hotels in Des Moines for Your Wedding Day

If you’re planning your wedding in Des Moines and you’re looking for the perfect hotel to get ready with your wedding party, this list is for you! We’ll share some of our favorite hotels and alternate locations that make for the best pre-wedding photos. These are locations that we have first-hand experience with so you know they’re going to be great because they have the photographer stamp-of-approval!

A quick note – many venues that are not hotels will say that they have adequate space for you and your bridal party to get ready. In our experience, there are very few downtown venues that truly have plenty of room. Most have smaller rooms that work for getting your dress on or final prep steps, but won’t be large enough for multiple ladies getting their hair and make-up done. For this reason, we highly recommend taking a tour or checking with us first before finalizing your getting-ready space!

Surety Hotel

Recently renovated into a boutique-style hotel, Surety Hotel has incredibly luxurious standard guest rooms, however, our top recommendation is their Marchande Suite.  Located on the top floor, their premium suite has lots of room for your whole entourage to prep for your wedding day.  With wrap-around city views and quite possibly some of the best light in a hotel room we’ve ever seen, this is our top pick for getting ready suites in all of Des Moines.  We love love LOVE it. 

Take a look at some photos from wedding prep that we’ve photographed at Hotel Surety in the Marchande Suite – if it’s not clear that we love this place, I think this will convince you!

Hotel Surety's Marchande Suite wedding day getting ready location in downtown Des Moines

The modern neutral furnishings accent and compliment any wedding color palette, which we love!

Hotel Surety Marchande Suite with bride throwing confetti on the bed with her bridesmaids

There’s TONS of room for hair and makeup!

hair and makeup prep for a bride on her wedding day at Hotel Surety

See all those windows?  It creates incredible light that we LOVE!

bridal prep hotels and spaces in des moines

Bonus points for Surety Hotel:

  • They allow pets for a small additional fee!
  • They even thought to have a hook on the wall – the perfect spot to hang your dress, all ready for it’s close-up!
  • Lots of gorgeous natural light
  • Their lobby and atrium is available for wedding photos and is one of the best!  Make sure you talk to the hotel in advance to make sure it’s available on your date if your reception/ceremony is not hosted at Hotel Surety

View more information about Surety Hotel here.

A few favorites from a wintery wedding with photos in the Surety atrium and lobby area, which is right outside their beautiful ballroom.

hotel surety atrium wedding photos

Des Moines Marriott

One of the more popular hotels in downtown Des Moines because it is quite large and close to many venues.  The Marriott has access to the skywalk, making it perfect for those cold winter weddings or for guests walking back to their room after a night of fun!  The Marriott has a huge quantity of guest rooms, so if you need a large hotel block for your guests, this is a good option.  

For getting ready and prep, most of the suites have great natural lighting and ample room for smaller bridal parties.  There is modern decor with gold and some teal accents.  In our opinion, the main suites work best for when you have two stylists at work – any more than that, and it can start to get a bit cramped.

A few of our favorites from recent wedding getting ready and prep at the Des Moines Marriott:

Des Moines Marriott wedding getting ready moments

bride reading a thank you note from her groom

Bonus points for Des Moines Marriott:

  • well connected to several venues and downtown locations
  • shuttle service
  • on sight valet parking and parking garage
  • LOTS of hotel rooms for guests and room blocks available

You can find more information for the Marriott here.

The Des Lux

A boutique hotel where each room has its own style, the Des Lux is all about luxury.  Think sumptuous leather sofas and grand fireplaces.  Our favorite rooms are the corner Kings Des Lux Suite & the Gateway 2-Room Suite — we love all of the natural light!

the des lux hotel  in Des Moines with a wedding gown handing up in the window

The Des Lux Hotel is almost right across the street from the Temple for Performing Arts, making it the perfect space to get ready for weddings held there.

bridesmaids sipping mimosas on wedding day before wedding des lux hotel in des moines

The lobby area of the Des Lux is also an incredible location for a first look or group photos if you’d like to stay cool in the summer or warm in the winter.

Des Lux hotel lobby in des moines on a wedding day with bride and groom seated for a formal portrait

Bonus points for The Des Lux Hotel:

  • prime location right downtown and close to many venues
  • stunning unique rooms with ample space in each suite
  • incredible lobby and bar area for a more sophisticated option for indoor photos

For more info about The Des Lux, head over here.


Hotel Fort Des Moines

It’s been a few years since we’ve done getting ready photos at Hotel Fort Des Moines – it has been under renovation for a number of years.  However, they re-opened in 2021 and we can’t WAIT to photograph in this space again!  In the past, the suites were already full of lots of light and lots of room, so we can only expect the same great options!

We’ll update this post in 2022 – we have several weddings hosted here and can’t wait to share

For more details about Hotel Fort Des Moines, head here.

Air BnBs

You may not have thought of this for your wedding day, but there are a plethora of amazing condos and downtown lofts available for rent on Air BnB in Des Moines!  The nice part about Air BnB options, is there tends to be more room, plus you have space to cook or prepare food (or keep drinks cold in the fridge) that you may not have in some hotel suites.  It’s also a bit more private and personal, and you do not have to compete with other guests for access to elevators or checking in.  

To start your search on Air BnB, head over here.


A few final tips!

When you’re choosing your getting ready space look for these things:

  • Plenty of natural light – the more, the better!
  • Enough room for the size of your bridal party to be comfortable getting ready – ie, lots of mirrors if you’re going the DIY route for makeup
  • Make sure to ask about things like parking, guest room rates, and check in time – do you need to reserve the night before in order to start getting ready early on your wedding day?  Don’t forget to ask!

For more getting ready tips:

Tips for Better Getting Ready Photos on Your Wedding Day

What to Look For in a Getting Ready Space

Bridal Details: What to Prepare for Your Wedding Photographer



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