Just like when you stay at a hotel, you want your guests to feel at home. It’s easy to do that, if you include some important essentials in your guest room.
“The most successful vacation rental homeowners we work with focus on the three Cs of any good vacation experience: comfort, convenience and community,” says Rob Stephens, who has hosted vacation renters for 18 years in Denver. “Consider each when investing in a new home. Ideas include access to a private bath, a private entryway, an in-room refrigerator and an outdoor food prep/eating area.”
Whether your guests will be staying for the weekend or the whole week, you can create a comfy place to sleep and rest by providing these guest room essentials: a clean room, household and area guides, bathroom essentials, quality linens, reading material, a lamp and a fan.
A Clean Space
This should go without saying, but your guest room should be clean and uncluttered. First, it’s just gross making guests stay in a dirty or messy room. Second, in most cases, guests are vacationing, so they don’t want to think about cleaning and other household chores. Make their stay as comfortable as possible by providing a clean space where they can store luggage, as well as providing fresh sheets, pillows, and towels.
A Comfortable Bed
You don’t have to spend thousands of dollars on your guest bed, but you should provide them with a quality bed that is not lumpy or old. Doing so means you’ll avoid having grumpy guests with backaches and bags under their eyes.
Household and Area Guides
This may sound very formal, but making guides available will save guests the trouble of asking lots of questions. A household guide is crucial, so guests will know how to use your TV, heating and cooling systems, security system, and more. You can also include information such as your Wi-Fi network name and password. An area guide can review your favorite local dining spots, the closest bus or train stops so guests can get around town without you, and other local attractions they should try to visit while in town.
When it comes to bathroom essentials for guests, think of these three Ts: Towels, toiletries and extra toilet paper. Towels should be just as nice as the towels you use in your master bathroom and, of course, be clean. Be sure to offer wash cloths, as well as hand towels. And include at least two towels per person.
Essential guest room toiletries should include the following:
- Soap bars or body wash
- Face cleanser
- Hand soap
Other toiletries you might want to put out for guests may include disposable razors, disposable toothbrushes, shaving cream, deodorant, sunscreen, sanitary items, face moisturizer, hair gel and aspirin or ibuprofen. Don’t worry about buying full-sized items; travel-sized toiletries will work just fine. A hair dryer and toilet plunger should also be placed in the bathroom.
Of course, place extra toilet paper rolls in a place where guests can easily find them.
Just because your guest room is used less than other rooms, it’s not a place to skimp on the quality of the bed sheets. Think of your stay in a favorite hotel: The bed is probably more comfortable than your own! You don’t need to purchase top-of-the-line sheets, but invest in quality sheets that won’t be itchy or rough on the skin.
Also include a heavy blanket or quilt, in case your guests get chilly.
Something to Read
Local magazines and newspapers, old paperback books, and other reading material should be left in your guest room. It’s likely your guests will need some downtime, and reading material offers them the opportunity to disconnect and get lost in a good book or magazine.
“Providing reading materials is also a nice touch,” says Stephens, adding that hosts can, “Give guests the option to start a book and take it with them when they leave.”
A Lamp and a Fan
These two are lumped together since they will likely both be placed on a nightstand. A lamp will give your guests the option to relax right before bedtime, without harsh overhead lighting.
And, because you can’t guarantee that you’ll have the same heating and cooling preferences as your guests, give them a fan — either one that can sit on a nightstand or drawer or an overhead fan — to give them some control over the temperature.
In addition to these seven essentials, guest room extras to consider are phone chargers, an old-fashioned alarm clock and, if you want make your guest room truly feel like a luxe hotel, some chocolates placed on the pillows.
With these guest room essentials, your guest room will feel like a home-away-from-home that guests rave about for years to come. Prepare to host family and friends in your new home throughout the year!
Patricia L. Garcia is an award-winning freelance journalist who has written for NewHomeSource, the Associated Press, New Mexico magazine and the Texas Bar Journal. When not writing, she can be found in the garden, battling weeds and high-desert heat.