Your houseguests are due to arrive in an hour, and you can feel the sweat dripping down your forehead. Preparing your home for loved ones is a better workout than any gym session this month. After all, hosting overnight guests requires more work than a simple dinner party. It’s a much more intimate experience – something we all learn over that first makeup-free morning cup of coffee. With Thanksgiving right around the corner, use this checklist to ensure your guests have everything they might need during their stay,
Make the Bed with Fresh Linens
There is nothing worse than crawling into a strange bed as a guest and finding a mystery hair or stain. It doesn’t matter if your last guest was only there one night. Provide your houseguests fresh linens, preferably white, every time. White sheets and a duvet cover allow for linens to be bleached and just feel cleaner and more hotel-like. If your guest sheets are already washed, you can throw them in the dryer with an essential oil-coated wool ball for an instant refresh and loosen any wrinkles.
Set out Basic Toiletries and Fresh Towels
Similar to your guest bedding, provide your guests with fresh white towels. A good rule of thumb is one washcloth, one hand towel and one bath sheet per guest per night. Present the towels on the end of the bed stacked largest to smallest, and place basic toiletries such as shampoo, conditioner and lotion on top. If possible, use travel-sized toiletries, refilling them to the top. Your guests will likely bring their preferred products, but this little gesture goes a long way in making the experience comfortable.
Provide Multiple Types of Pillows
When it comes to hosting overnight guests, prioritize their comfort above all else–particularly a comfortable sleep. When making your guest bed, try offering a few different pillow options: soft, medium and firm. Depending on how an individual sleeps (on their stomach, on their side, etc.) they will have a different preference for the pillow they use. This may seem a bit over-the-top, but it will go a long way with your guests. Plus, by shopping sales you can find quality pillows for a reasonable price.
Check Toilet Paper Supply
One thing you don’t want to replicate when you’re creating a home away from home for your guests? Being stuck on the toilet without any paper—why are you always the only one who changes it when it runs out?! Make sure there are plenty of extra rolls in plain sight (you can use a basket or toilet paper roll stand) in both your guest bathroom and any other bathrooms they may use, such as the powder room. If you want to up it a notch, fold the end of the toilet paper roll into a triangle, turn on your bathroom tap for a moment and turn it off. Gently press the tip of the triangular section to the water tap for a split second. The water on the tap will create a circular design for a very 5-star hotel finish. Pro tip: Don’t use too much water and try to do this a minimum of 30 minutes before your guests arrive to allow for the water stamp to dry.
Offer Water and Glasses for Your Guests
Avoid unexpected, nighttime encounters with your guests in the kitchen by setting up a hydration station on your guest room bedside table. We recommend getting a carafe with a stopper and serving the water at room temperature so your guests can use it throughout their stay without worry. You could leave nighttime chocolate or treat alongside their water glasses for that added spectouch.
Leave an Empty Hamper
Just as you want to impress as a host, your guests will likely be on their A-game when it comes to check-out time from the luxury hotel experience you’ve created. That means they may look to dispose of their dirty towels and even go as far as stripping the bed. If you want to avoid them walking into your almost always messy laundry room where you stuffed all the clutter before they arrived, leave an empty hamper in the guestroom.
Set Aside Extra Pillows and Blankets
If possible, do your best to stock your guest room with at least one extra blanket and an extra pillow, not including what’s on the bed. If your houseguests stay more than one night, remember to ask how they slept and if the temperature was okay. Depending on the type of year, they may need more blankets the following night, or you may need to reduce the air conditioning temperature or offer a fan.
Scent is Important, but Don’t Overdo It
Rather than filling your guest room with a nose-itching, artificial scent, first try airing out the room. Even if the time of year doesn’t scream “open windows,” just a few minutes of fresh air can remove any staleness. Be mindful that some guests may have fragrance sensitivity, which can oftentimes lead to headaches. Instead, opt for lighting an organic candle approximately 30 minutes before guests arrive or leaving fresh flowers in the room.
Ensure Wall Outlets are Available.
It’s inevitable that at some point your guests will need to plug in something—a phone, a hairdryer, a laptop. Rather than having them have to choose between having light with a lamp and charging their cell, invest in an outlet cube for your guest room. This is such a simple and inexpensive way to show your guests that you have thought and care about their every need.
Leave a Personalized Note
Create a home away from home for your guests by leaving a personalized note on their pillow outlining what they may need to know about your home. Along with the WIFI password and where to find other supplies they may need, you can use this as an opportunity to lighten your load as a host by letting your guests know to help themselves to the drink fridge or by telling them where they find the coffee pods in the morning. The more preparation you do beforehand, the more enjoyable hosting becomes.