Create A Welcoming Home for Your Guests

During these final days of summer before the kids go back to school, it’s still not too late to invite a few friends over for a summer visit. A  few thoughtful touches around your home will make your guest’s visit more comfortable, fun and inviting.


Tips to help you create a welcoming home for your guests

1. An orderly home doesn’t have to be a perfect home. With everything tucked away in its proper place, you will be in a better frame of mind to entertain your guests, readily finding the sunscreen, bug spray, summer serving trays and plastic outdoor glasses. No worries if you use paper plates and napkins – if you are having fun, who cares?

2. Put some thought into your guest room. Crisp, clean bedding, ample pillows and room for your guest’s belongings (in drawers and/or closets) is a great place to start. Provide a good reading light with an updated assortment of magazines. A beautiful tray with a basket of fresh fruit or  (or freshly purchased) cookies, bottled water and a few tea bags is a warm and wonderful greeting. I just purchased two luggage racks for my guests’ suitcases and set them up in my guest room. Your guests will appreciate the convenience and you will feel better about keeping dirty suitcases off of your clean bed linen. Here’s the link if you need one:

3. A fully-stocked fridge and pantry makes mealtime and snack time a breeze. If you prepare and freeze several easy meals you will be able to spend more time with your guests than in your kitchen. Have plenty of healthy snacks (especially fruit) on hand and remember to ask about any special dietary needs. It would be unfortunate to risk serving your famous gazpacho to someone with a tomato allergy. My favorite cold soup is cantaloupe melon soup – just made a triple batch yesterday for guests arriving today.

4. Create a luxurious escape in your guest bathroom. Adding a spa-themed basket for guests with shower gel, bath salts and travel-sized shampoos makes this often overlooked space an inviting place for your guests to unwind. Add a scented candle and plenty of soft, fluffy towels and voila! – you’ve created a sanctuary. 

5.  Most importantly, relax. You set the tone for your guests with your calm demeanor and hospitable nature. When you’re stressed out and unprepared, everyone is affected. Treat yourself to your own spa day in preparation of your guests arrival. You may have to leave your house so you don’t dirty the tub or towels, but take care of yourself as well as you take care of your summer guests.


Diane Gottsman

Diane Gottsman is a national etiquette expert and modern manners professional, sought out industry leader, television personality, accomplished speaker, Huffington Post blogger, author, and the owner of The Protocol School of Texas, a company specializing in executive leadership and etiquette training. Diane is routinely quoted in national and international media including The New York Times, The BBC, CNN, Bloomberg Business Week, Kiplinger, Huffington Post Canada, U.S. News and World Report, and Forbes. She is the resident etiquette expert for two popular morning talk shows, SA Living and Good Day Austin. She has been seen on The TODAY Show, HLN Headline News, WGN Chicago, and CBS Sunday Morning. Her clients range from university students to Fortune 500 companies and her workshops cover topics ranging from tattoos in the workplace to technology at the dinner table and the proper use of social media.

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