One way to make guests feel truly welcome is to try to replicate what they love about their own home. Imagine what they'd like to transport from their bedroom if they could. Comfortable linens, supple pillows, and a good mattress lay the foundation. Then layer on specialized creature comforts. For example, give guests who like to read a padded headboard that's nice to lean against, and offer a throw to wrap around their shoulders. If visitors have work to do, include a desk or lap desk, plus a charging station for their devices.
Make sure guests can control the temperature and the light in their room, just like they would at home. A ceiling fan and blackout shades on the windows let them make the room feel just right.
Though your guests are surely enjoying visiting with you, they would also like to have time alone. Make sure their bedroom is a place they can feel comfortable retreating to at any time of the day. Some guests may wish to take a midafternoon nap, and curtains or shades will help them cover the windows adequately. Some may want to check in with work and may need a small desk. Others just want a cozy chair and footstool for reading or resting. Give them a small table so they can take a snack or a cup of coffee with them, and provide reading material, such as a guidebook about local interests.
Rather than stock a guest room with unique mementos and family photos, take cues from the slightly impersonal but genuinely welcoming feel of a hotel. Plump the bed with freshly pressed white linens, which always look clean and crisp. Warm the floor and hush ambient noises from the household with soft carpeting. Provide a bench to hold a suitcase, and dresser drawers for unpacked clothes. Stock the room with water bottles and a few snacks. If you don’t have a dedicated guest bathroom, at least offer a mirror for quick appearance checks.
When you know there will be times you'll be hosting several people, and not all of them may want to share a bed, twin beds are a flexible option for guest rooms. You can even make one or both of them trundle beds to squeeze in a crowd. Separate the beds with an ample surface for twice the number of phones, books or magazines, lamps, and even snacks. Give each sleeper an assortment of pillows to choose from, including large firm ones for leaning against. And let each person have control over sleep temperature: Dress beds with layers that can be stripped off, and offer throw blankets that can be added. A soft rug between the beds warms the floor and cushions footsteps if one person sleeps later than the other.
Your guests might not feel comfortable sharing a coat closet with the whole family. Provide a coat rack in the guest room to properly hang outerwear and bags. For weekends with surprise weather forecasts, make sure you leave an umbrella and a waterproof shoe tray—your guests will be impressed!
The last thing you want as a host is to be responsible for a visitor to miss an important meeting. Make sure your guests have all they need to wake up refreshed, recharged, and on time. Equip the bedside table with an alarm clock, and make sure an electrical outlet is near for a place to charge phones overnight.
Increase the fashion (and function!) of your nightstand with these six essential items.
Provide your guests with clean towels and linens. It's best to leave these necessities someplace easily accessible so guests aren't rummaging through your linen closet. In a small guest bathroom, this shallow shelf fits the limited space while keeping towels and washcloths on hand.
In today's technology-driven world, it's expected for cafes, stores, and offices to have Wi-Fi available, so why should your house be any different? Be sure to let your guest know the Wi-Fi password upon arrival. Leave a note on the guest room desk or go the extra mile and put it in a frame!
Not sure what to do with books once you're done reading them? Store them in the guest room! Not only does it fix your clutter problem, but it shows you want your guest to kick back and relax. Optional: A glass of wine to go with a good read.
Most people think having a guest bedroom means buying all new bedding and sheets, but that doesn't have to be the case. Mix and match gently used sheets of different colors and patterns for a nontraditional guest room. This green, blue, and orange set is quirky and eclectic!
To really go the extra mile, create a place for your guests to properly store luggage. Whether you provide a bench at the foot of the bed or a bookshelf with deep, large compartments, your guests will be thankful they don't have to set their belongings on the floor.
Here's how to make your next overnight guest happy and comfortable at your home.