Welcoming guests into your home is always a joy. If you have a visitor planned in your diary, you’re likely looking forward to long days playing tourist as you show them around your hometown, soaking up all the sights and sounds it has to offer. You might be itching to create an epic welcome feast, with a dining table laden with their favourite foods, or perhaps you’re simply looking forward to that first greeting and squeezing them tight after spending time apart.
Whether they’re a friend or family, and whether they’re staying for one night or a week, you want your guests to have the best time when they come to visit – and that includes making sure they feel as comfortable as possible in your home. You’ve probably already made sure the cushions are plumped on the sofa, and that you’ve cleaned the house top to bottom, but is your guest room up to the job? It’s easy to forget your guest room, often lying empty, but getting it right means affording visitors a home away from home, somewhere they can truly relax, day or night. Here are some top tips to make your guest room that little bit comfier.
Clean and declutter
Guest rooms can easily become makeshift storage cupboards when not in use, with most of us utilising the spare space to hoard stuff we don’t need. If you’ve got guests coming to stay, make a quick clear out your first port of call. You’ll probably find that you can throw away, donate or sell a lot of what you’ve been storing in there to make space for family and friends.
For those items you want to keep, invest in storage solutions to tidy it all away. A shelf, a cabinet or a decorative chest will allow you to keep the things that matter without cluttering up the room. Once it’s done, you’ll have the space to turn it into a room that’ll make your guests really feel at home in your house. It’s also worth planning in a deep clean before your guests arrive, pulling out furniture to vacuum behind, and wiping down everything from the skirting boards to the coving that might just get missed from time to time. As a nice touch, try having a wardrobe in the room that isn’t full of your winter jackets and hiking boots, allowing your guests to unpack and avoid living out of a suitcase. If you have nowhere else to store your seasonal items, try using a vacuum pack bag to reduce the space they take up – and keep them dust free – before storing them under the bed or in the loft.
Give your spare room a fresh lick of paint to truly transform the space. It’s likely to be the smallest bedroom in your house, so a dark colour is a no-no, as it’s only going to make a small space feel even smaller. When you’re decorating the guest room, softer, light tones are your best bet.
Keep it simple with neutral hues. Soft lilacs create a gentle vibe in any setting, while dusky pinks offer the perfect base, ready to dress up with brilliant white furniture and gold accessories. Blue tones are ideal for creating a soothing and tranquil atmosphere, while a cool green hue can transport you back to nature. Play around with colour schemes and finish off with accessories, using bright flower arrangements, wall art and soft furnishings to complete the look.
While you’ll no doubt have plenty of activities planned with your guests, they’ll inevitably spend at least some time in their room. This might be when they first wake up, before going to bed or while they’re getting ready for the day ahead. Give them something to do while they relax. Install a TV on the wall so they can catch up on their favourite shows or fit a bookshelf with a selection of your favourite novels to choose from. If they’re a music fan, why not provide them with a wireless speaker, so they can connect it to their phone and listen to their favourite songs and podcasts.
Make sure the bed has plenty of pillows and a throw – for extra warmth on cooler nights – as well as crisp bed sheets for a real hotel-like experience. For an added welcoming touch, fold fresh towels at the end of the bed so they’re ready for whenever your guests want to jump in the shower.
Choose blackout curtains for your spare room to ensure your guests aren’t woken up by bright sunlight streaming in through the window. Pop a lamp on the bedside table too for extra ease when night falls. This is also the perfect place for a lush house plant or a fresh bunch of flowers to give the room a homely feel.
The perfect sofa
Finding space to add a sofa for a guest room is a bonus that’s sure to help any friends and family settle in. Here, guests can curl up and read a book before they go to bed or relax and watch TV as they’re getting ready in the morning.
The two-seater Darcie is a really cosy choice, made from beautifully soft velvet that would help anyone relax. If you’ve only got a small amount of space to play with, opt for an armchair instead, such as on from our Anneka range. Squeeze the most out of your space by choosing a multi-functional sofa bed such as the stylish Marni. It’ll provide your guests with a cosy bed at night and a comfy sofa during the day. Transform your spare room using the tips above and give your guests the ultimate home away from home experience.