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Creating a Welcoming Guest Suite In Your B&B

Tips to Make Your Guests Feel at Home: Use all five senses to create a warm and welcoming stay for your house guests.

For many years I ran my own guesthouse – the Racehorse Inn at Launceston in Cornwall. (You can see it here: http://www.racehorseinn.co.uk) Although I am no longer in the business, I can tell you you don’t have to roll out the red carpet and pull out all the stops to make your guests feel welcome. In fact, too much effort might have the opposite effect and create an awkward or overly formal mood. Here are a few tips for how to make your guests feel welcome and relaxed while they’re visiting, using the five senses: Sight, touch, taste, sound and smell are powerful means of communication.

Sight
A suite that looks relaxing and fresh will set the mood for your guests’ visit. Be sure the room is clean and free of clutter. You wouldn’t want to sleep in a bedroom cluttered with dusty exercise equipment and boxes of junk, so why would your guests?

Lighting can also make a difference. Be sure the room is well lit, and include a lamp on the nightside table for guests who might like to read in bed.

Think about the most luxurious hotel rooms you’ve seen — beds neatly folded, pillows arranged and flowers on the night table can go a long way to make a room look welcoming. Consider including in the room plants, a smooth chest of drawers, an antique alarm clock, and even a book on the nightstand.

Touch
Make sure the linens in your guest suite are clean, soft and comfortable. This includes bed linens, towels, rugs and other fabrics. In addition, add a few throw pillows of varying fabrics to the bed to add an extra sense of texture.

Taste
Taste can be accomplished with a bowl of apples on a table or even a couple of chocolate chip cookies on the night table. Consider your guests’ dietary needs and preferences, and plan accordingly.

Sound
if you don’t live on the water or in a mountain cabin, where the great outdoors create a cacophony of sounds, a white noise machine can bring the outdoors in. With settings like ocean waves, rain forest, and summer rain, the sounds that one of these machines can make can add a tranquility to an urban location. It can also help to drown out street noise and other sounds for guests who might be light sleepers.

Smell
Fresh flowers and a bowl of apples or other fresh fruit on a table or nightstand can go a long way to make someone feel welcome, and add a touch of hominess as well. You could also try some scented candles if your guests do not have allergies.

Considering all five senses when decorating a guest room or guest suite can help to make your guests feel welcome and relaxed during their visit.