When Guests/Visitors Come to Stay …

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I’m lucky enough to travel a bit throughout the year. We usually venture overseas for either a holiday, business trip or a conference and we try to sneak away when we can for long weekends.


It’s always exciting to check into a hotel, particularly if it’s somewhere we haven’t stayed before, and I always feel a sense of anticipation when I insert the room key and open the door for the very first time. I’m rarely disappointed because we do a fair bit of research before booking and rely heavily on sites like Trip Advisor for recommendations and advice from people who have recently stayed at the same place.


I love those first few moments when I see what will be my “home away from home”, even if it’s only for a few nights … exploring the room, judging how comfortable the bed will be, opening the curtains to take in the view, taking in the space in the room and checking out the wardrobes, fridge and electronics.


But the thing I appreciate the most are the little touches … the toiletries in the bathroom, the magazines to read on the coffee table, the little chocolate on our pillows when the bed is turned down for the night and the beautiful soft towels in the bathrooms.


So when we have our own visitors come to stay, I like to spoil them with a few similar touches:


  • First on the list is a freshly made bed. Fresh sheets, some extra pillows (if you have them) and a spare blanket in the cupboard, in case the nights turn cool, always help any guest feel comfortable.


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  • Fresh bath towels, hand towels and face washers are a must and are placed on the end of the bed with a fresh cake of soap. A different coloured towel for each guest is a good idea so that each person can quickly and easily remember which towel is theirs. I also place a towel-hanging rail in the bedroom so visitors have somewhere to hang their towels, particularly, if there aren’t enough towel rails and hooks in the bathroom and it needs to be shared with others.


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  • For the bathroom, I create a “Pamper Pack” in a small basket or a simple platter which will usually include:


  • Shampoo
  • Conditioner
  • Soap
  • Body Lotion
  • Hand Cream
  • Toothbrushes and toothpaste (just in case someone forgets)
  • Hand Sanitizer
  • Razor
  • Tissues
  • Wet Ones
  • Sunblock


I also make sure the toilet roll holders in the bathrooms are full and also let my guests know where they can find extra if needed.

Travel-size toiletries are now readily available at the supermarket or pharmacy but it’s also an idea to collect a few from your own travels and save them to use when you have visitors stay.


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  • I like to clear the bedside tables, leaving only a lamp, so that visitors have some space to place things like jewellery, mobile phones, hair items, wallets or any other bits and pieces. If we have a lot of visitors and have to rely on sofa beds, I usually put a small table next to the sofa bed to be used in the same way. I also create a second small basket for the bedside table that contains a notepad and pen, some munchies like muesli bars, chocolates, biscuits or lollies, extra tissues and lip balm.


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  • A few magazines on the bedside table never go astray, along with a couple of books (if I happen to know what my visitors like to read) and a couple of daily newspapers.


  • I like to leave a couple of glasses and bottled water beside the basket as well for anyone who gets thirsty, particularly in the middle of the night.


  • Providing some hanging space with a selection of different hangers is also a good idea for visitors because nothing is worse than living out of a suitcase when you travel. If the cupboard in the guest’s room is currently used, I simply push everything to one side. If you don’t have any spare hanging space in wardrobes, create some by placing an over-the-door hanging rack and add some coat hangers to that.


  • I also like to create some space in drawers and make sure a couple are empty in the bedside table and chest of drawers/dressing table for underwear, clothing and miscellaneous items.


  • Another thing I like to do is create some space either in the wardrobe or garage for my guests to store their suitcases/luggage. This helps keep their room clutter free, allowing them to settle in, fully unpack and really feel at home.


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  • Don’t forget any littlies that come to stay. I usually place a teddy bear or other soft toy on their bed and I also put together two small baskets … one with books to read and one with a few small toys and puzzles.


  • I like to leave a small alarm clock on the bedside table. Not everyone uses their phone for an alarm and sometimes guests need to get up early to fit in a full day of sightseeing or meet to go on a tour.


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  • Fresh flowers are a lovely touch in any room. When visitors come to stay I usually pick up a cheap bunch of flowers and pop them in a vase in their room. Not only do they look great, but they add a beautiful smell to the room. If you’re lucky enough to have some lovely flowers growing in your garden, cut some of those instead.


  • Lastly, if I’m not available through the day to provide transport for my visitors, I also gather for them some bus and train timetables and a list of events and sightseeing that they might be interested in.


These are just a few simple things I like to do to really make my visitors feel welcome and comfortable. None of these things really takes a great deal of effort or costs a lot of money and any items not used can be recycled for the next visitors.


So tell me, do you have visitors often and what’s your favourite place to take them during their stay?



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