It’s the little touches that have the biggest impact, and that’s the golden rule to keep in mind when preparing to host guests. Remembering to leave out towels, buying flowers and clearing out the spare wardrobe will let your nearest and dearest know just how excited you are to host them.
Have you ever stayed with friends or family and felt like an inconvenience asking for things such as the Wi-Fi password? Making guests feel welcome requires a little thought in advance – but spare time is something we are all pressed for during the Christmas season.
So to help you prepare, we have put together our top tips for hosting guests. Whether they are staying in your spare room or bunking down on the couch, your guests will feel right at home with these ideas.
1. Freshen up
The spare room is often the space that feels a bit musty, simply because it isn’t used frequently. A few days before your guests arrive, air out the room, put fresh sheets on the bed, spray natural room freshener around (a spritz on the pillows and toilet paper never goes astray) and give the room a good dusting and vacuum. If you have a light box around, place it in their room with a welcome message.
2. Create extra space
This is a good one to do while setting up the Christmas tree, because that often involves moving one or two furnishings around anyway. You may need to move things out of the spare room to create space, or out of the living room. With extra people, luggage and Christmas decorations taking up space, things will get cramped, so try to declutter where possible (the garage is always a good spot for temporary storage).
3. Add thoughtful touches
The festive season is busy, and everyone needs time to recharge. Make your spare room an inviting oasis where guests can relax and take time out for themselves. Fresh flowers, some good books and magazines to read and candles are all lovely touches they will really appreciate. While you are at it, clear out part of the wardrobe so they have space to store their clothes. In summer, it’s also a good idea to place some cool sparkling water beside the bed too.
When guests have somewhere to hang their towel and leave their laundry, they not only feel welcome, but your home remains in order too. Practicalities to think about include leaving out a box of tissues, putting a towel rail or hooks in their room, and providing a wicker basket (our current obsession) for their washing. If your spare room doesn’t have a fan installed, arrange one of these too for the Brisbane summer heat. And finally, if your guests have little ones, put away breakables within their reach and think about leaving out a few toys.
5. Make your visitors feel at home
When your guests arrive, give them a tour so they don’t need to ask where things are, and leave out a spare set of keys and the Wi-Fi password. And because it’s Christmas, make them feel extra special by stocking up on thoughtful treats. Remembering their favourite breakfast granola, coffee blend and wine will truly make them feel welcome. Anyone with food intolerances or allergies will be so grateful that you thought to buy gluten-free bread or lactose-free milk for them too!
Lastly, enjoy their company! Christmas is all about togetherness, and being prepared allows you to simply enjoy your guests without the stress of feeling unorganised. And if you’re really pressed for time, treat yourself to a once-off clean so you can relax and make the most of this wonderful time of year. – The Mother Ducks x