The holidays bring along the best of times with family and friends visiting. For many of us, preparing the guest room (or spare room) is as exciting as hosting friends and family. To give you a head start, here are a couple of tips from interior experts on how to achieve a relaxing and inviting space for your guests…

Get the basics right

Karen Steyn, owner of The Home Studio, a CT-based interior design service, shares a quick guide on how to get your spare bedroom guest-ready:

To create a pleasant and memorable experience for your guests your top priority is giving them the best night’s sleep possible.

• Once you’ve organised a comfortable bed, the next step is to dress it with soft, cosy bedding. Add lots of layers and textures to the bed for an Instagram-worthy finish. Place large square pillows at the back to add height and then place standard pillows at angles for more depth. Add scatters in various colours and textures.

• A bedside table is great, but it doesn’t have to be expensive. You can re-purpose a chair or stool, or even stack a few crates to create an inexpensive alternative. Finish it off with a bedside lamp and a small vase with flowers or greenery for the perfect styling opportunity.

• Guests have luggage and even if they’re staying for just the weekend they need somewhere to place a few personal items. A luggage bench for their suitcase, a free standing hanging rail for clothes and a shelf or two for personal items is ideal.

• Ensure the room has good blinds or curtains with strong blackouts, so your guests can sleep well.

• If the room has space, an armchair offers your guest the opportunity to relax and take some personal time out in the privacy of their room.

• If the guest bathroom doesn’t offer it, the bedroom needs a hairdryer and mirror and a dedicated space to hang wet towels.

The Home Studio

The next level: Five-star luxury

Local linen company Volpes gives us a few tips on how to achieve a hotel-like look and feel:

• For an opulent and luxurious look nothing beats the sheer elegance of all white linens. Luxury pure cotton 200, 300 and 600 thread counts will enhance the five-star feeling, but if you are on a budget or need a more hardworking fabric, the same effect can be created with a 144 polycotton duvet cover set.

• When it comes to furniture, a solid or heavy-looking pedestal is essential paired with a fabric headboard. Add metallic lamps and greenery, or even a favourite photo in a stylish frame on a bedside table.

• For accessories, a textured luxurious throw folded neatly at the foot of the bed adds the final touch along with velvet textured scatters that we can be placed behind the pillows.

• Enhance the look and feel with dark moody walls. It will really give you the look of a luxury hotel.


The finishing touches

It’s the smallest details that often have the biggest impact, and it’s not different with your guests. Gillian Cary-Baddeley of The Sleep Collective, an online store that stocks sleepwear, bedroom and bathroom products, shares a few ideas on how to go that extra mile:

• Scented room and linen sprays such as Naturals Beauty products are great to freshen the room or to spray on the bed linen. Naturals Beauty sprays are 100% natural and will welcome the guests when they enter the room with a soothing scent of essential oils. The Lavender & Geranium will help relax guests after a long journey and ensure a good night’s sleep.

• Find some indulgent and pampering products for you guests to use in the bathroom, to keep the skin hydrated after long days in the South African sun. Keep an eye out for products that are 100% natural and chemical-free, such as Naturals Beauty bath and body products. It is also lovely to expose overseas guests to local products and to support our amazing South African brands. The Mbiri body wash and lotion is also another great option. These Namibian products use organic ingredients designed for our African climate. Luxurious and hydrating, they are great for the shower. Ensuring you have a few products for your guests to use will prevent them from lugging around their own products.

• Sleep masks are trendy and very useful for overseas guest who may not be used to our bright morning sun, so let them sleep in with a luxurious hemp and silk sleep mask.

• Another indulgent touch is a lavender eye pillow – designed to block out the light, soothe tired eyes and relax the weary traveller. Perfect for an afternoon nap too.

The Sleep Collective

Happy holidays!