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Being in the hospitality industry, we are always looking for new ways for our guests to feel welcome and at home away from home. After many years we have found perfect ways to create our own guest rooms into a pseudo-hotel room itself, perfect for our loved ones to escape while visiting for the holidays. Here are some of our favorite tips to make your guest room more inviting :

1. Passwords and instructions – when we first got the internet, the password was simply our phone number and name. Now we have 16-digit and letter combination codes and find ourselves searching for them whenever anyone asks, only to have to repeat ourselves multiple times, because B’s and D’s, S’s and F’s, too many letters sound the same. Make it easy for your guests by having a printout of the password ready and available in their room. Throw in special instructions on how to use the TV, DVD player, or operate the coffee machine. We all wake up at different times and no one wants to be the first up and then have to wait for coffee.

2. Speaking of coffee, how about water and snacks? Nothing fancy, it could simply be two glasses with a carafe and a tin of mixed nuts, but not everyone will feel comfortable going through your cabinets or mentioning when they are hungry.

3. Just as not everyone wakes up at the same time, not everyone goes to bed at the same time, so toss a few magazines and books into your guest room that your visitors might enjoy. Coffee table books are great, but I always like to include a book that is easy to get interested in for a better read.

4. Toiletries – be sure to have extra toothpaste and toothbrushes, shampoo, conditioner, soap, toilet paper, Q-tips, and dental floss in the guest bathroom. It is these little things that they may not realize they forgot until they need it. I like to go a step further and include a few basic medicines, such as Tylenol, Advil, and Tums or some other form of upset stomach medicine.

5. And while we are on the subject of extras, be sure to include extra blankets, towels, washcloths, and hangers for your guests. You never know if they will need them.

A little bit of effort goes a long way, and your guests, no matter how close you are, will appreciate it. However, if you would prefer to go the easier route, The Umstead is happy to welcome your loved ones for the holidays too. Book their accommodations online or speak with a reservations agent at 919.447.4050. Happy Holidays!

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