By Laura Beth Peters & Laine Stubblefield, Steel Magnolias Podcast
This is a great question because it sounds like you already know the importance of making your guests feel welcome! If you have no idea where to begin, we suggest staying overnight in your own guest room. This will allow you to experience the space and it’s possible shortcomings, then you can address them so that all your houseguests experience great hospitality. You may find that the pillows need replacing or that your nightstand needs to be moved closer to a plug for phone charging. Here are some tips that will show your guest great Southern hospitality:
1. Frame your Wi-Fi username and password and place it in a prominent location
2. Temperature is subjective so provide lighter and heavier bedding options and an extra fan can make a room more comfortable to sleep in.
3. Provide a carafe of water and glass or a bottle of water per guest and a local snack like Franklin Toffee or Olive and Sinclair Chocolate.
4. Fresh flowers in the bedroom or guest bathroom bring happiness and freshness to a guest space. If you know a favorite flower of your house guest, then that is an even more special touch!
5. Share the guest room closet with your guests! If it’s packed full then at least clear some space right in the middle and some open hangers.
6. Set out the bathroom towel and washcloth so your guests are not rummaging through closets.
7. Keep a basket of basic toiletries: shampoo, conditioner, toothbrush, toothpaste and feminine products and place in the guest bathroom.
8. If you’d like to avoid any embarrassing moments for you or your guests, make sure there is a plunger in the guest bathroom!
9. Even though technology is always changing, if you have an extra phone charger that might work for your guest, go ahead and leave that next to your Wi-Fi password.
10. Finally, if your guests will be doing things on their own, list out suggested restaurants and attractions for them. You could even grab some brochures at the Visitors Center to showcase different tourist attractions.
We’re not sure who said it, but there’s a saying that fish and houseguests both start to stink after three days. So there’s some wisdom in discussing in advance the intended stay with anyone coming to stay with you and that way you’re stocked up and there’s no surprises. Nashville and the surrounding areas are being flooded with travelers so expect guests! Your mindfulness will be felt by your guests and make their visit all the more pleasant. Enjoy creating the space! If you’d like to hear more thoughts on setting up a guest room, check out Episode fifteen of Steel Magnolias Podcast here.