Guest Rooms That Say “We’re Glad You’re Here”
Rule #1: Don’t be so busy that you forget to check out these things before you need them. On the other hand, when I know that friends will be staying overnight, I might add a pretty new detail or two. Can you relate to this?
Because I love to travel, I’ve spent many a night staying in hotels, inns, bed and breakfasts, and with friends. While I’m there I always notice how I feel when I’m in the space. Do I feel welcomed? Does it feel creepy? Is it adequate, but could use some work?
I know that, as an interior designer, I’m more aware of my surroundings than most people. And I truly believe that each space has it’s own energy. But these stays have let me discover a thing or two about what the “perfect” guest bedroom could be. And in the end, it comes down to these three questions:
- Is it Welcoming?
- Is it Comfortable?
- Is it Private?
A welcoming room will let your guests know that you really want them to be there. It has little added touches like flowers, magazines, and good lighting. One friend introduced me to the idea of Pillow Presents, which are gifts you place on your guest’s pillow before they arrive. I loved this idea, and started doing it when our family comes to visit. It doesn’t have to be expensive. Sometimes I forget, and leave a little bag of candy. Or completely forget and am reminded by my youngest granddaughter. And now my daughters have started leaving them on our pillows when we visit!
To feel comfortable, room size isn’t as important as the bed, the pillows, and the temperature in the room. Everyone has their own comfort level when it comes to these three things. Giving options to your guests is so appreciated…especially aging parents, pregnant daughters, and “hot flashing” girlfriends!!! We’ve rented a house in Florida for a few weeks, and I’m already wondering if the bed and pillows will give us a good night’s sleep.
Finding a private space for everyone when your home is overflowing with guest can sometimes be a challenge. When this happens it’s helpful to think out of the box and have a plan before your guests arrive. But, basically, guest appreciate a place to store their “stuff”, and maybe get away from the crowd for a minute or two.
Do you have a checklist of guest room favorites? Here is my Top 10 list. Some were borrowed from my friends, hotels, and inns. Others were suggested to me by family.
- A comfortable mattress with mattress pad
- Tiny paper cups at the sink, stacked on a pretty plate
- A full length mirror, or at least a mirror for makeup and hair
- A folding screen or some type of room divider if other guests will be walking by or sharing the space
- Bottled water or a small pitcher and glass
- Down pillows, or at least nice fluffy ones (some people sleep with two pillows)
- A throw to cuddle up with for an afternoon nap
- A place to hang your clothes and open your suitcase…and empty hangers
- Lamps tall enough to read in bed
- Blinds or draperies to cover the window at night
Do I have each and every one of these in our guest room? Not at all! But I’m working on it with each and every guest. And when I travel, the list grows as I discover some new little nicety that I hadn’t thought of before.
In the end, it’s all about enjoying your time with house guests, welcoming them into your home, and being together making memories that will last a lifetime!
Your Design Action Steps:
- Look at your guest room from a visitor’s eye…objectively
- Make a list of what you see that is welcoming, comfortable, and offers privacy
- Now make a list of what could be added to the room that would add to your guest’s comfort, and make them feel really welcomed
Remember that it doesn’t have to be expensive or over the top in luxury.