When you look at the building in the above picture, it certainly doesn't scream 'golf course clubhouse.' Maybe a downtown office building or a doctor's office? But this is indeed a golf course clubhouse and it's unique design and features are drawing attention and winning awards!

The clubhouse at Ellis Golf Course in Cedar Rapids was severely damaged in the 2020 derecho. So was the golf course. If you play a round there now you'll notice far fewer trees and a few more open fairways. To replace the damaged building, a new $3.5 million building was designed by OPN Architects. The Corridor Business Journal reports that the 5,820-square-foot clubhouse opened in July of 2022.

Integrated Studio
OPN Architects

The CBJ reports that the clubhouse features a concession area and a pro shop as well as an adjoining 2,300 square foot event center that can seat around 120 indoors with room for another 40 or so outdoors. The event center is available to rent out year-round for corporate events, birthday parties, and receptions.

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The building is also getting its share of critical acclaim. The CBJ recognized the clubhouse as the Best New Civic Development in the Corridor in its inaugural Commercial Real Estate Design Awards in September. The building was also featured in a cover story in the monthly publication Metal Architecture, and Iowa Architect published a four-page feature on the clubhouse in its fall 2023 issue, according to the CBJ. In January, the project also won a 2023 Woodworks Wood Design Award for Regional Excellence from the Wood Products Council.

I play in a yearly charity golf tournament at Ellis and can personally attest to the facility being one of the best anywhere. Congratulations to the entire staff at Ellis Golf Course on a beautiful building that the entire community can enjoy.

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