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Show your holiday hospitality with a sleep-friendly guest room

November 25, 2009

Courtesy of ARA Content

The holidays bring a lot of happiness—and a lot of company.

With so much going on this season, the one thing you shouldn’t have to worry about is your guest room. You want to feel confident that your company will have a comfortable and pleasant stay at your house.

According to a 2009 Wellness Survey by mattress maker Tempur-Pedic, 83 percent of people consider it important that their guests get a good night’s sleep when visiting their home. As such, the guest room will inevitably be on the minds of many who are welcoming family and friends this holiday season.

Luckily for all of the holiday hosts and hostesses out there, a few simple touches can help transform any guest room into a peaceful retreat for visitors, according to Nancy Glass, a home decorating expert, six-time Emmy Award-winning HGTV show creator and Tempur-Pedic wellness adviser.

To really grasp the experience, a host should spend a night in his or her guest room. Many people assume that if their extra bedrooms are clean and equipped with the basics, the room is visitor-ready. But the reality is, no one can truly know how a room sleeps until they’ve experienced it themselves.

“Before your next guest arrives, give the room a try yourself, and see what you discover,” Glass says. “Is the room a little drafty? Are the pillows comfy? Do the windows effectively block light out? These are the things that make a big difference and will ensure you are placing your attention on what the room needs most.”

Next, focus on some key focal points, beginning with the general atmosphere. While many hosts feel comfortable decorating their guest rooms more lavishly than their own, they might overlook providing a relaxing ambiance. Using natural, neutral colors such as soothing celadon greens, pale blues and creams on the walls, avoiding excessive clutter and laundering bed linens with soothing lavender scents will help create an environment where visitors can unwind.

“Atmosphere is essential, and can also be easily enhanced through lighting,” Glass says. “Turn off your overhead lighting and rely on natural light and floor and table lamps with dimmers. For larger budgets, consider adding a small chandelier over the bed. This creates a beautiful tableau, and instantly transforms a room’s atmosphere.”

Another key feature to consider: the bed.

Are the mattress and pillows comfortable? Do they appeal to guests of varying sleep styles and preferences? If not, consider replacing your current mattress and pillows with something more versatile, like Tempur-Pedic’s mattress and pillow collections, which conform to every body’s weight and shape and have been repeatedly ranked at the top of industry sleep satisfaction surveys and studies. The new TEMPUR-Cloud Supreme mattress could be a particularly good fit for a guest room, as it creates a softer sleep surface while still providing Tempur-Pedic’s pressure-relieving comfort and renowned support—something that will ensure guests of every sleep preference have a more-than-satisfactory sleep experience during their stay.

Additionally, does the guest bedroom have the appropriate bed accessories to make it feel just like home? Guests should be provided with both heavier blanket overlays, like duvets or comforters, and lighter throws that, collectively, accommodate varying temperature preferences. Make sure both firm and soft pillow options are available to accommodate different pillow density preferences.

Finally, don’t underestimate the big impression that smaller, less expensive touches can have on a guest. If the floor gets cold in the morning, consider putting bathroom rugs on each side of the bed. If the room basks in abundant natural light, consider investing in thicker curtains or shades so sleeping guests are not awoken prematurely.

“The next time you’re at the drugstore, pick up sample-sized toiletries, as people feel more comfortable opening something new,” Glass says. “You could also consider tucking away a mini-fridge in the nightstand—they’re inexpensive, easy to install, and provide guests quick access to some of the little luxuries, like bottled water, in the comfort of their own space.”

A few simple touches and guests will be more comfortable in no time and appreciate the extra effort—and, let’s face it, a rested guest will be a welcome guest.

To learn more about the Tempur-Pedic sleep experience from satisfied owners, visit www.tempurpedic.com/AskMe.

From the November 25-December 1, 2009 issue

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