10 Guest Room Essentials

If you are like me and occasionally host out of town guests, your guest room shouldn’t be an afterthought. Sometimes it’s hard to have a dedicated guest space. I’ve been there; a pullout in the basement; or an air mattress in the office. But, if you’ve got the extra room, why not make it a sanctuary that welcomes any overnight visitors? I tell every client to start with what they have. Sometimes it just takes a little creative thinking to rework a space. Supplement as you go. Here are 10 Guest Room Essentials that will act as a guide as you prepare your guest space. These suggestions will make super fans out of your guests.

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Bedside Tables are Essential to a well appointed guest room.

Bedside tables

To start off, bedside tables are a super important guest room essential! In any bedroom, a bedside table is a landing place for all kinds of things. A small clock is a must for guest rooms. Adding an alarm clock is a thoughtful touch. Bedside tables are also places that guests will put their phones, so add a charger in case they’ve forgotten theirs. Go one step further and supply your WIFI password. A little sign is all you need. Think of all the conveniences and little thoughtful touches of the best Airbnb you’ve stayed in. Give your guests the same considerations.



A top 10 Guest Room Essential is providing reading material.

Reading Materials

Every guest needs their downtime. Whether they take a few minutes before they turn the light off before bed, or need to regroup between daily activities, your guest will retreat to their space at some point. By providing some light reading material like a popular new book or magazines, they have the option to take a few minutes to glance through a few glossy pages or become interested in a bestseller. Either way, they can take a moment to recharge and by providing these they are encouraged to have a few minutes on their own.



Adding extra towels, pillows, and blankets is a thoughtful guest room addition.


When our guests’ comfort is our main goal, go the added step of offering a few extra textiles to ensure they are content. A basket with a variety of throw blankets and extra pillows will ensure your guests are able to tend to their relaxation needs without feeling like they are putting you out by asking for more. This goes for towels too. Sometimes it just isn’t clear what towels are for guests or where they are kept. Adding a few to a basket in their space will answer any questions. Don’t have space for another basket? Consider rolling up a few towels and placing them on the end of the bed, or to one side of a dresser or bench.  Providing extra blankets, pillows, and towels are one of the top 10 Guest Room Essentials.



Easy to access refreshments are a top 10 Guest Room Essential.


This may seem contrived, but, believe me, it’s appreciated! How many times have you stayed away from home and missed the luxury of going to the fridge and grabbing a drink or to the panty to snack on something? In another person’s home that can feel a little awkward. When you place a small try with some bottled waters and pre-packaged snacks in your guest room, your visitors will love you! Are you working without a designated guest space? Carve out a space on your kitchen counter that has a few items to grab. This could look like a bowl of fresh fruit, a small basket of trail mix packets or other snacks. Just like at grandma’s house, don’t let anyone go hungry!



Add greenery and fresh scents to welcome guests.

Freshen up the Space

If you’ve ever been in a hotel room, you will realize they have no greenery. When you add flowers or greenery to a space, it will automatically feel more alive, welcoming, and fresh. You don’t have to keep live plants if your green thumb is less than green. Artificial plants and flowers can be quite realistic and there are all kinds of options to choose from. Consider adding a scented candle to add a light fragrance to the guest room too. These small touches make a space feel less like a sterile hotel room, and more like a home.



Add a mirror to your guest room.

Add a Mirror

I am a huge fan of mirrors used throughout the home. I did an entire blog post on mirrors here. By providing a mirror for your guests, you are giving them a quick and easy way to check their outfit or do their makeup without taking up valuable bathroom time, especially if they are sharing the family bathroom. In addition to the convenience a mirror adds to the guest room, it will also help bounce light around the space and make it brighter and more cheerful. Mirrors also make spaces feel bigger and can be a visually interesting part of the guest room décor.



Include a place for guests to dispose of their trash.


This item of my 10 Guest Room Essentials may seem a little weird but think of when you travel. How many receipts do you collect? What about wrappers, ticket stubs, Kleenex’s, and other random bits and pieces you want to get rid of? Providing a small waste receptacle for your guests is one more thoughtful touch. Your guests will appreciate not having to search out the kitchen or bathroom garbage or stashing their garbage in their luggage for the trip back home.



Another top 10 Guest Room Essential is to have basic toiletries on hand.

Basic Toiletry Items

Just like in a hotel or vacation rental, when you provide a few basic toiletry items for your guests you may save them a trip to the store. For anyone who has forgotten their toothbrush or toothpaste, this will be such a relief! No one likes to be settled for the evening only to discover they neglected to pack some of the basics and must make a late-night run to the store. Basic toiletry items don’t have to be fancy or full size. Consider swinging by the aisle at the store for a few travel-size items when grocery shopping. It’s a small and simple way to make your guests feel welcome and thought of.



Clothing storage is a top 10 Guest Room Essential

Clothing Storage

There is nothing worse than staying in a room that is too full for your suitcase. Depending on how long you’ve been traveling, you may have a lot with you. Clothing storage is a must for a comfortable guest room experience. Consider clearing out a side of the closet for your guest to hang their things. If you have the space to add a bench or luggage rack, your guest will be able to elevate their luggage and appreciate not having to root around on the floor for their things. A luggage rack is easy to pack away in the closet when not in use. If you invest in a bench, it can easily move to and from another area in the home and can be a great design element to add to any space.




Wow your guests with a few extras.

All the Extras

Want to really wow your guests? Create an experience for your overnight visitors by supplying their room with a simple coffee station, a small decorative bowl for their jewelry, a sound machine for sleeping, a pair of house slippers, or add a mint to their pillow for a little hospitality cliche. These little things will impress your guests and they will be grateful their every need has been thought of.


Of course, these 10 Guest Room Essentials are for those guests you love, appreciate, and want to spend time with. Here’s my disclaimer: You do run the risk of encouraging your guests to stay longer and visit more often by following these suggestions. My goal with each out-of-town visitor I host is for them to be welcome, comfortable, and to want for nothing in my home. But feel free to completely ignore all these ideas for any unwanted house guests you want to deter!

As always, if you’d like help dialing in your home or guest space, please reach out! A Design Consultation is a simple in-home appointment where I offer ideas, suggest furniture placement solutions, curate a shopping list for investment pieces, and plan a space that makes your heart happy.

Click here to schedule a Pre-Consult Phone Appointment. Let’s chat about how we can bring your home to life for you and your guests!




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