How To Be A Fabulous Host(ess)
Whether you invite people into your home for an overnight stay, a week get away or longer, I have a simple way to make your guests feel right at home.
A welcome basket can easily be put together and the small gesture can will leave a lasting impression.
Create a fabulous welcome basket
1. Basket. You can use a basket you have around your home already. It can be a nice decorative wicker basket or a plastic laundry basket lined with fresh towels.
2. Toiletries. Yes people generally travel with their own but there are some items we always seem to forget. Include a new toothbrush, travel size shampoo, conditioner, and body lotion. You may also want to include a razor, shaving cream, a small bar of soap, and deodorant. If you have a large enough basket (or are using one for laundry) include fresh towels and face cloths so guests have just what they need when they need it.
3. Reading material. Include the latest edition of the local paper, magazines that might be of interest or your local “What’s Up?” publication. Something that gets your guests familiar with the local attractions, culture and places of interest.
4. Public transport schedules. If your guests will be using public transportation during their stay it will be very helpful if you can round up route schedules for some of the more popular destinations in your city or town. Include a fare schedule and even consider supplying a few tickets to get them started.
5. Map. Include a walking map of downtown and a road map of your city or town. If your guests will be travelling by car they will certainly appreciate knowing where to go and the opportunity to plan.
6. House keys. Allow your guest to come and go as they please by providing them a set of keys to your home. Keep a spare set of keys on a special key ring that is just for guests. At the end of their stay ask for the keys back so you can use them the next time someone comes to stay.
7. Refreshments. A bottle of water, iced tea or juice is a thoughtful extra for your house guests. You could also include some fresh fruit, chewing gum, mints, chips or pretzels.
8. Phone list. Provide some peace of mind by including a phone list of all important numbers. Include fire, police and ambulance as well as your work, cell and home phone numbers. You can go one step further and include phone numbers for popular tourist destinations or restaurants your guests might try. It could save them a bit of time and hassle in finding the numbers for themselves.
9. Notebook and pen. I love the pads of paper and pens supplied by hotels. I don’t collect them or bring them home as souvenirs but they always seem to come in so handy. A notebook and a pen provides your guests with a place to make plans, jot down dinner reservations and journal about their stay.
10. Computer. This is the digital age and odds are your guests will want to stay connected. If you have a second computer set it up in their room. If you have one show them where it is and provide them with the passwords they’ll need to get online. If you don’t have a computer at home do a bit of research and find out where the closest Internet cafe is and what the rates are. Your guests will thank you!
So you see it doesn’t have to be extravagant, expensive or really over the top. Just include a few comforts of home and make them feel as welcome as possible.
Bonus: This will likely land you in the Host(ess) Hall Of Fame: Frame a picture of you and your guests taken the last time you spent time together. It’s a great personal touch for their room and really shows you were thinking of them.
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Picture courtesy of: La Villa Bonita Mexican Culinary Vacation