Guest Bedroom Ideas
The thought of getting a guest bedroom ready might bring up stressful memories for you: the frantic energy of your sweaty dad running around with a vacuum, your eight-year-old brother trying to quickly fold guest towels the ‘right’ way, your wild-eyed mom stuffing last week’s laundry in the closet and throwing a blow-up mattress on the floor. All before that doorbell rings.
Hosting doesn’t have to be this way. Whether you have a separate carriage house or a sofa bed in your living room, we’ve rounded up some tried and true guest bedroom ideas so you can roll out the red carpet for visitors — without the stress.
The bed is the most important part of any guest bedroom — but it can also be the trickiest component. There’s a lot of pressure to make sure your guests have a five-star stay. These simple tips will keep any kind of sleeper happy.
FRAME OF MIND.
The bed frame and headboard will most likely be the largest items in your guest bedroom. As the focal point, you want to make sure they say all the right things… unlike your great-aunt at last year’s Thanksgiving dinner.
Before choosing a bed, consider your style. If you’re going for a sleek and minimal look, a solid and simple silhouette like that of our Lenia bed is perfect. The timeless aesthetic and craftsmanship means this bed will welcome years of guests through your doors.
If your goal is to create a calm palace for your guests, a modern and serene bed such as the Tessu is a cozy classic. The fabric headboard is the perfect spot for guests to lean up against when they want to read in bed — or to enjoy your famous breakfast-in-bed service.
Short on space? A bed with room for dedicated underbed storage, like the Lenia, can work double-duty for you and your guests. You can fit up to four Lenia drawers under the bed, which provides space for you to stash extra bed linens — and plenty of room leftover for your guests.
Once you’ve got the bed’s foundation down, it’s time to add some softness. Elements such as the mattress, bedding, and pillows all work together to create a memorable experience for your guests.
We all have stories of the worst mattresses we’ve ever slept on. Don’t give your guests another one of these with your poor choice of sleeping situation.
We recommend finding a medium-firm mattress that can offer support for your guests, but doesn’t feel like a bed of nails. Balance, you know?
As for the bedding, it’s best to keep it simple. Stick to neutrals like grey, beige, or white for a soothing color palette that will have your guests sleeping like babies. Babies that sleep through the night and don’t know about stuff like taxes and jobs yet.
If it’s in your budget, 100% linen is always a luxurious and sustainable choice, but another natural material like cotton also passes the guest test. And for the love of all that is good please make sure your guest bedding is clean. Nobody wants to play ‘guess that stain’ after a 20-hour flight.
Pillows are another key part of any guest bedroom experience — and the perfect place to leave complimentary mints. The wrong pillow, however, can cause headaches and neck pain. Provide four head pillows (two firm, two soft) so that your guests have their choice of support.
Finish off this cloud nine comfort zone with decorative throw cushions, like our Stitch pillow, for added texture and softness. Now that’s just rigggghhhhht.
Living out of a backpack while traveling was fun when you were 22, but it doesn’t quite have the same appeal these days. Instantly make your guests feel more at home by giving them dedicated space to store their clothes and belongings. This little touch makes them feel like they aren’t imposing on your space quiiiite as much.
Chances are your guest room is working double-duty as a home office, crafting station, or storage room. Having storage systems in place is key for keeping things organized and ready for impromptu guests.
A dresser is a game-changer in a guest room. Being able to unpack and put away your things is an underrated but highly satisfying phenomenon.
Even if you don’t have a completely empty dresser available for guests, it’s still helpful to have a few empty drawers ready. Guests won’t be travelling with their entire wardrobe, so it’s totally cool to have a dresser that’s half-full of your sewing supplies.
Our Lenia double dresser offers plenty of room for your porcelain doll collection and your guests’ stuff. The space up top provides an extra spot where you can leave little extras for your guests, like a basket of self-care products or a bouquet of fresh flowers. Or, if square footage is an issue, the tall Culla dresser offers a vertical storage solution. All of the drawers, but in a more compact package.
If you’ve ever stayed at a hotel of any kind, you’ve experienced those in-room luggage stands. These handy stands give you a place to rest your suitcase and, more importantly, keep it off the floor. Germaphobes rejoice.
Adding a stylish bench to your guest room takes this experience up a notch. While we know your guest room floor won’t contain nearly as many cringeworthy ecosystems as your average hotel, a bench is still a welcome touch. Not only will your guests have a dedicated spot for their luggage, but they’ll have a comfy spot to sit down and put on their shoes. And with our Culla bench, this thoughtful addition even provides bonus storage.
TAKE A STAND.
Plugging your phone in at night only to have it sleep on the floor is not the coziest guest experience. For utmost comfort, make sure your guest bedroom has nightstands on either side of the bed. It seems like a basic, but you’d be surprised how many guests find themselves awkwardly holding their nightly glass of water with nowhere to put it. Our Lenia nightstand has enough space for a bedside lamp, an alarm clock, and other little touches your guests are sure to appreciate. *Terminator voice*: they’ll be back.
OUT TO LOUNGE.
It’s wonderful to spend time with your guests, but everyone needs some alone time once in awhile. Give your guests comfortable time-out space with a lounge chair, like our Forma chair, right in their room. They’ll appreciate the dedicated spot to curl up and read a book, take a phone call, or just zone out in peace. A lounge chair is also a great place to throw their clothes after a long day. Just like at home.
SMALL GUEST BEDROOM IDEAS.
Not everyone has a spare room in their home they can use solely for occasional guests. But that doesn’t mean you can’t provide a 5-star stay for your visitors.
If your guest bedroom is more like a guest “center of the living room,” there are tons of ways to add big comfort to a double-duty space. A sofa bed is a good place to start. Gone are the days of tossing and turning on an old creaky sofa bed while a metal rod digs into your back. Our sofa beds, like the Soma, feature memory foam mattresses that will earn you rave reviews. Be warned: your partner might start picking fights for a chance to sleep on this couch.
When your living room is serving as an impromptu guest bedroom, there are other tiny considerations that can show them you really care. To get a really good idea of what your makeshift guest room needs, we recommend taking it for a test drive. When you spend a night sleeping in your living room, you’ll quickly realize what’s working — and what’s missing.
For example, you may never have paid much attention to the tiny lights on your internet router. But turn off all the lights in your living room and try to fall asleep? Those little lights flicker and dance on the walls in a way that makes you feel like you’re trying to rest at a rave. No thanks. Now that you’re aware of it, you can stick some dark tape over those little lights — or provide light-blocking eye masks.
Your night of living room camping might also reveal the need for better guest pillows, more access to plugs or extension cords for guest phone chargers, and task lighting. All these little things really add up to the most important big thing: being showered in praise by your guests.
FEEL AT HOME: LITTLE EXTRAS.
You know when you walk into a hotel room and things feel just a little… cold? There’s a bed and a desk, but the space feels a little clinical. It’s easy to get caught up in the big stuff, like making sure there are enough beds for everybody, but there are little touches that make a guest bedroom feel thoughtful and homey.
Whether you’re prepping the area around your sofa bed or you’re outfitting a wing of your castle, these little touches will turn up the cozy factor. We’ve also included a printable checklist below so that you don’t forget anything while trying to get your place visitor-ready. You’re welcome.
E-readers aren’t for everyone. Reading lamps provide just the right amount of light to illuminate the page of a book — but not keep the whole household awake.
Love a symmetrical look? Place two stylish reading lamps, like our Beam light, on both nightstands or side tables for a guest-friendly lighting source. Enjoy a more boho look? Mix and match different table lamps for visual interest.
REFLECT ON THIS.
We’re not saying your guests are vain, but having to fight over mirror space in the morning isn’t fun for anybody. Provide a full-length mirror, like our handsome Beau mirror, so your visitors can do their makeup, style their hair, and give themselves one last outfit check before they head out the door.
Hot or not? Everyone has different heat settings so a cozy blanket or throw, like our Mollo throw, shows your guests you’ve thought about all of their potential needs.
Besides these creature comforts, there are other details that can really give your guest an Instagram-post worthy stay.
- The Wifi password. Many guests might feel sheepish if they have to specifically ask their hosts for the wifi password, so save them this discomfort. Have the wifi password in an easy-to-see spot so they can sneakily enter it into their phones and devices at their leisure.
- A water carafe and glass. Nobody likes to have to ask their host for anything, so anticipate your guests’ needs with fresh water and a clean glass.
- Toiletries. Even the most type-A packers will forget something at home. Save your guests a trip to the store with small travel-sized toiletries like shampoo, conditioner, artisanal soaps (if they’re made locally that’s an even lovelier touch), toothbrushes, toothpaste, and body/hand lotion.
- A hairdryer. Many people prefer a hairdryer over air-drying, and it’s often the first thing to get taken out of an overstuffed suitcase. Your guests — and their voluminous locks — will appreciate even a small travel-sized dryer.
- Snacks. Travel uses up a lot of energy. Provide a selection of snacks such as granola bars, chocolate, dried fruit, nuts, and any other delectable items to make sure you don’t have to awkwardly address your guests’ growling tummies.
- Mini first-aid kit. Time with guests can get a little rowdy sometimes. Keep a scaled-down first-aid kit with bandaids, antibiotic ointment, sunscreen, after sun, and a few pain relief tablets — just in case those evening glasses of wine turned into a midnight wine rodeo.
- A small decorative bowl. Watches, jewellery, eyeglasses, and other miscellaneous objects need a place to sleep too. A little trinket bowl shows your guests that you’ve literally thought of everything.
- Art. Please don’t leave the room without any art on the walls. Worse: don’t add any generic doctor’s waiting room art. Ask your creative friends if you can commission pieces from them, search thrift stores for unique and beautiful pieces, or even create your own DIY colorful art prints. It doesn’t have to come from the Guggenheim. It just needs to be interesting.
- Earplugs and/or a sound machine. Being a guest is an experience that stimulates all five of your senses. Sleeping in a new place with new and unidentified noises can be jarring for guests. Provide a (new) set of earplugs and/or a white noise machine so your guests can concentrate on getting a good night’s rest — and not what the neighbours are fighting about. There are also many free white and ambient noise apps that you can suggest to your guests if a machine isn’t in your budget. Like they say: it’s the thought that counts.
- Flowers or greenery. These don’t have to be fancy. A simple leafy branch from your yard in a ceramic vase can do wonders when it comes to adding life to a room. A grouping of smaller vases with individual blooms or stems can also look super fresh.
- Towels. Self-explanatory, but make sure they’re spotless. Save the makeup-stained towels for yourself — or your dog.
- Slippers. Sometimes, even in the cleanest of houses, you walk around barefoot and end up stepping in something squishy, wet, and all around questionable. Keep your guests feet warm and clean with a new pair of slippers or thick and cozy socks. This is especially clever if their feet haven’t had a pedicure in awhile and you just want to keep your floors clean. It works both ways.
People often joke that a guest room should be slightly uncomfortable so visitors don’t overstay their welcome. We disagree. Use the tips above to provide your guests with a memorable and comfortable stay. That way they owe you a favor.