Put Out the Welcome Mat for Overnight Guests

Overnight guests coming! No matter what the occasion may be, it’s always fun to host visiting family and friends. To make sure everyone enjoys the visit, do some advance planning and a few simple preparations. The efforts you make now will pay off once your company has arrived.

Plan the Itinerary

Overnight guest coming? With some advance planning and a few simple preparations, you’ll be the perfect host with these tips and ideas.

Check Event Calendars. See what’s going on at your local museum or theatre. Are there any big festivals or music performances happening? Be in the know about area events so that you can either order tickets or make reservations in advance, or be able to make a suggestion if you’re looking for something to do at the last minute. Having flexibility is nice, but not planning anything at all might not give the impression that your guests’ visit is important either. Strike a balance.

Host a Party. Invite friends with similar interests to a gathering at your home. This is a nice way to entertain your guests while taking some of the socializing pressure off of you. Plus, it’s a great way to introduce friends from different social circles.

Bow Out. Don’t feel that you have to be on host duty 24/7. It’s okay to create an evening routine of retiring to your bedroom and saying goodnight, so that you can have a bit of time to yourself. It allows your guests to have some downtime as well.

Keep Them Close, But Not Too Close. If your home just doesn’t have the space or room for guests to spend an extended period of time, then consider housing them at a nearby bed and breakfast or hotel. Having guests close by would allow you to still play the role of host, even though they are a few minutes down the road.

Encourage a Getaway. Your guests don’t have to spend every waking moment with you. Let them know that it is fine if they want to do some exploring on their own. Let them know where there may be gaps in the schedule, if they want to make their own plans.

Accommodate the Kiddos. When children are on the guest list, be sure to make them feel at home too. From choosing kid-friendly restaurants, to setting up a babysitter for an adults night out, to stocking up on a few games and munchies that they will like, these kinds of gestures will go a long way.

Pamper the Pets. Just like the kiddos, pets will require a little TLC too. Be sure to prepare a special spot just for them with a guest pet bed and a food and drink area. A dog toy or special treat makes a nice finishing touch.

Prep the Guest Bedroom

Find B&B Inspiration. Remember your favorite little Bed & Breakfast? Take inspiration from the little touches that made your stay there so memorable and use it in your own bedroom decor. Decorative pillows, warm quilts and thoughtful extras (think robes and slippers!) make it a guest room that is comfortable and inviting.

Supply Refreshments. Be sure to keep a tray of munchies, bottled water and snacks on hand in your guest room. A bottle of wine with a pair of wine glasses is a nice touch too. This way, your guest will have something waiting for them, when they need some refreshment.

De-Clutter. Resist the temptation to store your beautiful collection of treasures on the guest room dresser or fill the closet with out-of-season clothes. Clear your personal items away and use bedroom décor to make the room feel welcoming. Decorative baskets look beautiful and can help wrangle miscellaneous items.

Dress the Bed. Start with freshly laundered linens, then add an assortment of pillows in a variety of firmness and size. The same goes for blankets; multiple weights and fabrics allows your guest to choose the one just right for them.

Hang Up the Hangers. Stock your guestroom closet with plenty of hangers so that your guests will feel welcome to hang their clothes and settle in. A suitcase rack presents an easy place to unpack and keep their bags. Clear space so that guests can stow their luggage.

Take a Seat. Many people consider the bed as a place to sleep, but not a place to sit. Place an upholstered armchair or side chair in the room with a nearby table and lamp for reading.

Add the Extras. Make your guest room feel right at home by adding a few books or magazines to the bedside table. Add a stack of postcards that features highlights of your home’s regional area.

Make Your Guest Bath, Guest Ready

Indulge. Go beyond simply giving your guest bathroom a good cleaning. Add those special touches, like fresh flowers, luxury bath products, fancy soaps and fragrant candles.

Load Up the Linens. Take some inspiration from your favorite spa and invest in a big fluffy set of luxurious bathroom towels. Your guests will notice the pampering touch.

Refresh Your Space. Take this opportunity to give your guest bathroom a makeover. Switch out a plain mirror for one that is ornate or unique. Add a little decorative lamp to the countertop, or hang a shower curtain in a fresh new design.

Anticipate the Moment

Breakfast Time. You know that everyone will want some breakfast, but everyone rises at different times. Set up a mini breakfast and coffee bar so that guests can get up and make themselves at home. Have a selection of coffees, teas and juice, alongside items that are easy to preset, like muffins, cereal or bagels.

Kitchen Access. Stock your pantry and refrigerator with plenty of snacks, sodas, fruits and kitchen essentials. Give your guests a quick tour when they arrive so they know where things are located and they feel welcome to help themselves to whatever they like.

Create a Central Hub. Designate a place that has all the information about the day, like a chalkboard in the kitchen dining area. Pile itineraries, event tickets, brochures and maps in a tray nearby to encourage guests to thumb through and get acquainted with upcoming plans. Hang extra house keys on a hook and even feature the weather forecast on the board.

Cocktail Hour. There is always that time right before dinner when everyone is ambling around and needs just a little something to get them by until dinner is served. Have a few appetizer recipes on hand to whip up for your guests. Serve a tray or two alongside everyone’s favorite pre-dinner refreshments, and you will have held off those hunger pains for everyone before making the transition to dinner.

Down Time. Arrange a few places both inside and out that make for natural conversation areas. Maybe that’s a fire pit outside, or a few comfy chairs by the fireplace. These are the places guests will gravitate towards to relax and enjoy their time with you!