Post-college, everyone tends to disburse and go their separate ways. Some move home in hopes of finding a job or making a life plan, while others hit the real world head on. B and I were lucky to be of the latter, first renting a house in Brookhaven for a few years before purchasing the home in Midtown that we live in today. We have come to find that living in the city attracts a generous amount of house guests, whether it consists of family staying for the holidays, friends from out of town, or suburban dwellers aiming to explore the city for an evening. Over time, I have complied a few tips and tricks to elevate the probability that our guests have the utmost comfortable stay.
First, have a designated guest area, weather it be a guest room, an air mattress in your office, or the couch in the living room. Let your guests know where they can place their belongings and that the space is for them. This way, no one feels they are awkwardly intruding on space meant for other uses.
Our guest room also serves as my “girl room” (a.k.a. closet), so we had to be creative when choosing a bed. A trundle bed ended up being the perfect solution! Most days, we keep it set up as a sofa, allowing for a coffee table and an overflow hang out area. When we are expecting guests, we convert it into a king (or can even leave it as two separate twin beds). I love the versatility it allows, while still being much more comfortable than your average pull-out sofa.
Before guests stay for the first time, make sure to stay a night “as your guest.” Physically sleep where your guest will; shower and get ready in your guest bathroom; making sure everything encompasses the standards you expect and desire your own room to illicit (comfortable, soft/crisp pillows and linens, presentable towels, etc.). You can then make the necessary tweaks before they arrive (if and when necessary).
I like to keep handy essentials that I know all guests will need and/or may forget.
- Keep spare phone chargers in the top drawer of the night stand or in a decorative basket on top.
- Leave the WiFi password easily accessible (I like to display on a chalkboard in the guest room, along with a personal welcome note).
- Place bottled water and glasses on their nightstands (as well as communicating where to get ice or a refill).
- Provide and explain your important “home information” (i.e. alarm code, gate or garage opener, where the spare key is hidden, etc.) – I like to make sure our visitors have valuable information either written on a note card to keep in their wallet/purse or in their phones (home address, emergency contacts, alarm/gate codes, etc.), especially if we plan to separate during their stay.
- Keep bathroom essentials on hand: assorted medicines, extra toothbrush/toothpaste, mini bottles of shampoo/conditioner, extra toilet paper, etc.
It is also nice to keep items out in the open that they may need, but could be slightly embarrassed or feel awkward to ask for.
- Plunger/toilet brush
- Bathroom spray
- Feminine hygiene products
Lastly, I like to add thoughtful touches that let our guests know we enjoy their company and are happy to play host!
- Sticky note on wine in fridge – “Have a glass…or 3!”
- Coffee mugs, K-cups, sugar/sweetener, and creamer on the counter (or a little note where to find it – i.e. in the fridge door) and displayed neatly.
- Fresh flowers in the guest bathroom and bedroom.
One of my favorite perks of living in the city is having friends and family visit. Not only do I love sharing our home and treasuring all of the hard work B and I have put into it, but bringing to light the fast-pace vibe of the city and our top local hidden gems could not be more exciting!