How to receive guests in the US: the basic rules - ForumDaily
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How to receive guests in the US: the basic rules

Preparing your home for receiving guests is not only about organizing your home so that it is transformed for the visit of visitors, but also a wonderful opportunity to clean up after last year's vacation and winter holidays. Hosting guests requires planning, energy, patience and a structured approach, writes Chicago Tribune.



In addition, you need to be able to organize space. Not every home has an extra bedroom, a private bathroom, or even a livable basement with a closet bed or air mattress. Not all homeowners understand how to create comfortable conditions for guests if they themselves have not spent the night as guests. Sometimes hosts invite friends over for one night to see if their guests will be comfortable. Below are tips from design experts to help you transform your guest room into a place guests won't want to leave.

If you have a separate room, decorate it in a different style

The best guest rooms are those that feel like separate apartments. This room has a door that can be closed if privacy is needed, and a separate bathroom with an adjacent entrance. This way, guests won’t feel like strangers on the hosts’ property.

"There is nothing better than when you are shown your room, where you can relax and leave things right after you arrive," says Sam Allen, a designer from Connecticut.



What is needed for this

  • Comfortable bed with ironed or waffle sheets, soft pillows and blankets, as well as a bedspread or feather bed. Designer Barbara Eliot from Georgia believes that the mattress should be of medium hardness in order to satisfy the most varied preferences of guests.
  • Remove items from several drawers and place sachets, fresh lavender or other aromatic herbs there. Empty one closet, leaving only enough hangers there. If you hang your dressing gown in your closet or on the inside of your door, your guests will find it a very nice gesture.
  • Place a table of appropriate height near the bed. It should be empty or with a small vase of fresh flowers. You should place a reading lamp, a clock and a decanter with a glass of water on it (or hang above it).
  • A cozy easy chair in the corner will create a small area where guests can drink coffee, read or even take a nap with an ottoman nearby. If space allows, place a desk with a chair.
  • Window drapes depend on the style of decoration of the room, the size of the windows and the amount of light. If the windows are large, you can hang curtains. If small and short, try Roman or roller blinds.
  • Ceiling fan will be needed if it is stuffy outside.
  • If there is a TV in the room, leave information about local channels - this will create an additional feeling of convenience.
  • Wall to wall carpeting or a large carpet will create a feeling of comfort and bare feet will warm you. Designers are advised to lay a carpet that covers most of the floor, except for 12 cm around the perimeter of the room.
  • Shelving for luggage saves guests from the need to bend down or smear the bedspread when unpacking things.
  • To make it easier for guests to connect to your Wi-Fi point, leave the information on the name of the point and the password to it in a prominent place, recorded in a beautiful notebook with a pen.
  • Another nice gesture of hospitality - guides and maps of the area, which will give your guests the opportunity to learn more about the area and even go for a walk on their own. Then you will have some free time.

If you do not have a separate room, imagine that it is

In many houses, especially in expensive areas of large cities or on their suburbs, there is no such luxury as an extra room, and often the owners do not want to give their bedrooms to guests. Even in this case, you can create comfort for guests using the sofa of a new model, in which there is no old-fashioned uncomfortable metal base, or with the help of a wardrobe bed that is hidden in furniture throughout the day.



Designer Heidi Sowatzky of Missouri says fold-up beds are a good idea because they tend to have softer mattresses than sofas. In the worst case, an ordinary sofa, couch or air mattress can also serve as a place for a comfortable overnight stay when they are properly covered. If this is your option, then you can make your guests' stay more comfortable by doing the following:

  • Empty the closet in this room or nearby;
  • In the nearest bathroom, make room for your guests toiletries. In case they forget something, put a toothbrush and other hygiene products in the basket;
  • To compensate guests for the lack of a separate place, add a few amenities: flowers, a stack of magazines, a favorite book and chocolate.

In the end, the most important thing is not square meters, which you can give to your guests, but attention and joy from the fact that they came to spend time with you.

Relationship system with guests: etiquette hospitality

  1. When preparing to receive guests, determine their arrival and departure times. If you're starting to get hysterical after three days of strangers in your home, it's best to let your guests know in advance when they can arrive and leave.
  2. As a host, you can voice the rules for your home. Even before your guests unpack their things and drink the first glass of wine, tell them about all the existing rules, even if they are a bit strange. Treat your guests as you would treat other people who could be received via the Airbnb website. For example: “could you eat only in the kitchen and dining room” or “please do not drink red wine near our new white sofa”.
  3. Voice your expectations. Don't freak out when you have to serve guests like you're a servant from Downton Abbey unless you ask for help - not everyone is a mind reader. If they don't come to your aid, ask nicely, "Can you help me cut up these tomatoes for dinner?" or say, “I would be very happy if you could help me set the table.” Most people will understand you correctly.
  4. If you are a guest, you must decide whether living with your host is right for you. If you don't like helping around the house - setting the table or making the bed yourself - then it's not suitable. Better book a room at a nearby hotel or motel. Let's say Chicago designer Tom Segal doesn't like staying with friends or relatives. He says, “I value my privacy and don’t like walking down a long hallway to go to the bathroom or spending time with others when I want to be alone.” However, Seagal enjoys hosting guests at home.

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