Anticipating the arrival of overnight guests is exciting as we look forward to catching up and spending some time together. And because we would love for our guests to feel welcome and comfortable, we are willing to carefully prepare for their coming. To help you with creating hospitality that will impress your guests, I’ll share my experience on that matter.

After living for 13 years out of my country of origin, and being married to an also expatriate, I have received many, many overnight guests, and along the years, I have learned details that will leave no doubt to your guests of how welcome they are in your home.

Inspecting the room

A few days before your guests arrive, inspect the room where they will be staying. If you have a dedicated guest bedroom, make sure that all the light bulbs are working and that the drawers where your guests will be accommodating their belongings have no dust. It’s easier to let things pass unnoticed in a room that is not in constant use. Check as well if there are enough blankets and if the pillows on the bed are comfortable.

Items to have on the nightstand

You can prepare the nightstand thinking of comfort and joy. Fresh flowers and a welcome note will put a smile on your guests’ faces. You might want to add your Wi-Fi password to that note. I am sure your guests will appreciate that. As for comfort, place on the nightstand a bottle of water, a snack (like a bag of nuts), a jewellery holder, and the current edition of a magazine you believe your guests will enjoy. Brochures with local points of interest will also be useful for your guests.

Preparing the guest bathroom

If you don’t have a dedicated guest bathroom, you can place the items I am about to suggest on the bed where your guests will be sleeping: fresh, crisp towels, toiletries and a candle. Offering toiletries like shampoo and conditioner, soap, toothpaste, and lotion is a really nice touch. You can find travel-size toiletries on grocery stores, pharmacies or online. If you are offering a candle to create a relaxing atmosphere and perfume the air, don’t forget the matches.

Slippers, when shoes indoors are not welcome

We tend to be more forgiving with guests when it comes to certain house rules, but if there are rules that you cannot overlook, like taking the shoes off when indoors, it would be nice if you could provide some slippers to your overnight guests. You can find inexpensive ones online. Buy a size that fits most feet.

Delights to munch

Maybe it is because I enjoy baking, or because I enjoy even more eating baked goods, that I like to receive guests with a fresh batch of cookies or muffins or a cake. If your overnight guests arrive in time for an afternoon coffee, they can enjoy these delights prepared specially for them straight away.