When you decorate your guestroom you can make it cute, elegant or even shabby chic. Really any style is fine as long as it is comfortable and functional. Think about who is likely to use your guestroom, and then consider what they will need to feel at ease and comfortable in your home. You can look at your favorite hotel if you want some ideas, and then if you want to see how successful your efforts are, pack a bag and stay overnight in your own guest room!
Comfortably Neutral. As you are creating a welcoming atmosphere in your guestroom, try to keep your style fairly neutral. While you can assign a specific genre to the room like art deco or shabby chic, you may end up with a decidedly feminine or masculine room that may be a little off putting to your guest. Look for neutral colors and if you stay in the color family of blues, greens and greys, you will create a relaxing and comfortable retreat for your guests.
Suitcase Rack. Many hotel offer a folding suitcase rack for their guests. While you may not have a suitcase rack handy for your guests, you can still offer the function by having an empty table in the corner of the room or a bench at the foot of the bed. An old chest or footlocker will also work well for this function. You also want to leave space on a dresser or bedside table for pocket items, jewelry and a cell phone, and you may want to clear out the top couple of drawers in a dresser for your guests to use.
Accessories Not Clutter. While you do not want the room to feel sterile, you do not want it to be cluttered either. Choose your accessories carefully, and keep the overall look of the room clean and simple.
Something to Sit On. Make sure to include a chair for guests to use while dressing or even to relax in. If space is limited, you may only be able to include a small chair next to the bedside table, which will work perfectly for making notes while on the phone or putting on shoes. If you have a little more room to spare, you may want to add an overstuffed chair with a small table and a reading lamp. Make sure to include some ambient lighting in the room to help navigating an unfamiliar territory a little easier.
Consider the Closet. Offer a clear portion of the closet with empty coat hangers for guests to hang their clothing. If your room does not have a closet you may want to include a small wardrobe, or even an over the door organizer with hanging hooks will work.
Make It Work. Now add the basic things that anyone needs when they are traveling. A radio, an alarm clock, a box of tissues and a notepad and pen are some fundamental things that a visitor may need. Then make sure to have plenty of extra pillows and blankets close at hand. You also want to have fresh towels and even toiletries and a hair dryer.
Nice Touch. Traveling often involves changing time zones, and you always want your guest to be comfortable. So put together a basket of "welcome" items which may include some bottled water, fresh fruit, snack bars, nuts and a couple of local magazines.