HOSTESS WITH THE MOSTEST: Preparing for house guests

Hostess with the Mostest: Preparing for household visitors

Be a hostess with the mostest: Here are some ideas which may assist you when inviting house guests into your luscious home…



Brunch/lunch/dinner guests:

  • Send clear instructions, including a map, if your home is in any way difficult to locate or has tricky parking
  • Clean the house and tidy the garden
  • Find out if any of your visitors have special dietary requirements
  • Plan the menu and do the shopping
  • Polish the silver and iron the linen napkins
  • Prepare as much of the meal in advance as possible
  • If you are doing multiple courses and tend to get flustered once guests are vying for your attention, write a step-by-step plan about what needs to be done as the meal proceeds
  • Work out what you are wearing and ensure it’s clean and pressed
  • Light scented candles or incense
  • Set the table
  • Have a shower early and freshen up again closer to the guests’ arrival time
  • Arrange vases of fresh flowers
  • Turn on music
  • Ensure the bathroom is stocked with beautiful soap and handcream (such as L’Occitane or Aesop), fresh hand towels and toilet paper
  • Get as many of the dishes done as you go so that guests don’t walk into a sink overflowing with dirty pots and pans
  • Put out the general rubbish and compost, and replace bin liners
  • Do a final wipe down of kitchen countertops
  • Turn on internal lamps and outdoor lights (if arriving at night)
  • Be prepared to meet guests at their cars with an umbrella if raining
  • Have drinks and hors d’oeuvres ready so that guests feel immediately welcomed.



luscious cocktails and canapes - - Serving your guests


Remember, your guests are coming to enjoy your company, not to judge you for a competition. They probably won’t notice the smeared marks on the glass door or whether there were 3 courses or 5. They just want to have a good time with you! 



breakfast at tiffanys party


Overnight guests, as above, plus:

  • Dust down the guest room and bathroom
  • Remove any items that shouldn’t be in th
    ere, such as children’s toys, paperwork, stored items, and ensure there is room for them to put down and open up a suitcase as well as handbags and laptop bags
  • Make the bed with freshly laundered and ironed linens, including an extra blanket or quilt for cooler nights
  • Lay out towels, bottled water, eye mask, slippers, pen and notepad, magazines, books and DVDs, chocolates
  • Restock guest toiletries in bathroom including toothbrush, toothpaste, mouthwash, dental floss, makeup remover, moisturiser, deodorant, razor, shampoo, conditioner
  • Check that the hairdryer works
  • Cut some fresh flowers from the garden and set in vase on bedside table
  • If you don’t have space for a desk and chair, at least provide a tray or “stable table” so guests can have a flat space to use for writing, balancing their laptop, or having breakfast in bed
  • Ensure guest bathrobes are cleaned and hanging in wardrobe or back of door
  • Think carefully about wall hangings – whilst you might not see them very often, they will be prominent for the guest/s sleeping in the room so choose calm, comforting, unlikely-to-offend pictures
  • Ensure there are multiple spare hangers in the wardrobe and a plastic bag for laundry items – invest in nice wooden hangers (don’t be tempted to dump all your old sad hangers in the guest wardrobe)
  • Check whether bulbs in lamps and overhead lights need replacing
  • Make sure that the bedside clock is on the right time and that alarm setting on the alarm clock is NOT turned on
  • Prepare a power board so that guests can charge up items such as laptops and mobile phones
  • Turn on heating or cooling prior to their arrival so the room is comfortable, and if cool, I also turn on the electric blanket to take any chill off the bed (but remind them to turn it off again!)
  • Tell them where to find the first aid kit
  • Give them a set of keys if staying for an extended period so they feel free to come and go freely
  • Make suggestions about good local walks (and where the dog’s lead is if they want a companion!) or where to stop for a coffee
  • Write down any codes such as internet wireless passwords so they can logon easily
  • Show them how to use any major appliances such as the coffee machine if you are not going to be around to show them in the morning, and lay out breakfast staples such as cereals and breads.



Pink and gold bedroom





Do a spot of shopping here:







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Cheers, Natasha








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