I was lucky enough to host one of my bestest friends in San Diego for my birthday weekend! As I was preparing for her visit, I was thinking about all the things I'd want someone to do for me if I were coming to stay at their house. Perhaps it's because I was raised by a Martha Stewart clone or because I can get a little bratty when I travel, but here are some guidelines to help you give your out-of-town guests the best experience possible. (Read: Do all of these things before I come to visit you.)
Research // Spend a night as a guest in your own home. Stay in the guest bedroom, use the guest bathroom & note what’s missing. Curtains or an eye mask to block out early morning sun, a cell phone charger, tissues, hangers/space for your guests to unpack, a nightstand with a bright light, etc.
Get your sleuthing hat on too- do some reconnoissance on your guests. Double check arrival times, food allergies & special requests for things your guests want to do on this trip. And probably most importantly, figure out what your WIFI password is.
Turn down for What // Provide a turn down service as if you were a hotel. Wash your sheets, bath towels, beach towels, pillow cases & throw blankets. Throw a fitted sheet over the air mattress your guests will be sleeping on, if you need to. Make it comfy & luxe; spritz lavender spray on everything. Make extra blankets, towels & washcloths readily available so your guests don't have to ask. Don't underestimate creature comforts & cleanliness.
Get Enough to Drink Part One // Bottled water!! Bottled water everywhere!! If your friends flew on a plane to get to you, they are dehydrated. If you are going out for drinks, making cocktails, or popping champagne, they are going to be dehydrated. If it's summer, they're thirsty. If they are humans, they're going to need water! Just get a huge Costco case of water or two to have on hand. Put it in an ice bucket, make it readily available & make it cute.
Get Enough to Drink Part Two // If you're doing it right, when you’re friends are in town, you're going to parrrr-taaay! For my ladies I always have champagne on hand, and since we are ballin on a budget, I usually buy a few nice bottles & then bring out the cheap stuff when our taste buds can't tell the difference anyway. No shame in my game.
In the morning, after a night of partying, chances are coffee will be on the menu. Stock up on supplies & ask your guests what time they normally get up, so you can set the coffee maker to wake up a few minutes before they do.
Think like a Hotel // No, you can't charge $8 for each bottle of water you provide. However, you can provide your guests with a few little treats for the bath, just like a hotel does. My friend Charlotte gave me this idea- she collects mini toiletries from hotels & keeps them in a basket in her guest bath for any visitors. This is also perfect for all of those mini samples from Sephora. Don't have a stash saved yet? Swing by Target for a few mini soaps, shampoos, mouthwashes, etc. Bonus: your sample stash is perfect for packing for your own impromptu weekend away. Double bonus: mini versions of anything are really cute.
Have Snacks // Trader Joe's is my go-to for snacking essentials. You'll need to cover a few categories: easy breakfast (coffee, tea, croissants, berries, yogurt) sweet tooth staples (dark chocolate, nuts, yogurt covered pretzels, Magnum ice cream bars) pre-party snacks (goat cheese/crackers, pita/hummus, chips/salsa/guac) and post-party snacks (jalapeño kettle chips & pot stickers FTW.)
Have a Plan, Not an Itinerary // Take some time to brainstorm restaurant & activity options but do not plan your guests' trip down to the minute. Regardless of the reason for the visit, this is THEIR vacation! Provide suggestions based on the mood of the group, but be prepared to be decisive and give direction. For your list of ideas, please get creative. You can go to Nordstrom or The Cheesecake Factory in every city in America. What does your town offer that you can't get anywhere else? Also, be sure to plan for some DOWN time. Again, your guests are on vacation, so allow them time to relax. Perhaps plan for some solo time- set your guest up with some iced tea & a magazine you know they'd love & a few hours lounging in bed or on the patio. Then leave them alone.
PS: Traveling soon? I’ll be doing La Jolla, San Diego & Cabo San Lucas vacation guides very soon!
Show appreciation // I am so flattered when someone goes out of their way to travel to see lil ole me, so I want to make sure they know I appreciate it. Have a handwritten note prepped for your friends upon departure along with a little gift- I’ll gifted my girl with a handpoured Amberly travel candle, natch. And next time, maybe a spray tan... for a sticky flight home.
It was an amazing weekend... #bts birthday recap coming this week :)