Holiday at home: creating a hotel worthy bedroom

By Lorna Rayner

What is wonderful about a hotel room? The way it looks? Usually luxurious, well-coordinated, aspirational and the wow factor that you can only dream of creating at home. Why does it feel so unachievable? Probably because a hotel only has to house the nice things whereas at home we all have stuff, other people and busy lives to locate as well.

But let’s for now just have some fun with the idea of creating a hotel room at home. The look is obviously important, but I think the feel of the room is equally relevant. And that’s where we have the advantage over a real hotel room – we get the satisfaction of doing it ourselves plus the enjoyment of the finished product.

Set the scene

Hotel rooms have a specific feeling; they are luxurious and impersonal – but not in a bad way. The room is a happy place where we are free to do all those things that we only find time to do on holiday – like read a book or magazine, paint our nails, lay in. Think of the excitement of a holiday and planning what you are going to pack—the anticipation and looking forward to the unexpected.

How do we achieve it?

Assuming you are not going to actually redecorate, let’s focus on the elements that can be easily changed in a couple of hours:

  1. Clean and Tidy. It is often said that the bedrooms sole purpose should be for sleep. In this space-restricted world, it’s not always possible or realistic. But at the end of the day having a clear up, tidying away all unnecessary items such as work paraphernalia and either return it to its rightful home or pop it in a box or bag and move it out of your bedroom. With this in mind, remove any other stuff that has gathered and treat as above.
  2. Dust, wipe and hoover This in itself will improve everything about your space.
  3. Find your holiday essentials, those items and activities that you never get around to enjoying at home.

For a bedroom I’d typically say no screens, but you’re on holiday, and I have never visited a hotel room without a TV. This is a holiday when you do things you wouldn’t normally do – so if snuggling up with your fave film ticks your box then go for it.

Make the Bed 

Our beds are the central point and the landmark of the bedroom. So, think about how you dress it and the impression you get as you enter the room for the first time. Firstly, give your duvet a shake and puff up your pillows. Use fresh, ironed bed linen (I know it’s a hassle but let’s go for it – it will be worth it) remember that feeling of snuggling into fresh, crisp sheets. Then, if you have them, add a throw or blanket and some cushions. Not sure how to put it all together? Stand up your pillows and add a cushion in front of each pillow stack. Next, fold down your duvet so that it stops just before the cushions. Lay your blanket across the bottom third of your bed. If you don’t have coordinated colours, don’t worry – embrace an eclectic vibe.

Other accessories

Lighting – think dim, calm mood-inducing and relaxing lights. Table lamps are perfect as this is not the time for the main bright light.

Scent – often forgotten but game-changing, reed diffusers are great for subtle and enticing scents but if you don’t have one to hand perhaps you do have fresh flowers, a scented candle, or a spritz of perfume.

Vase of flowers or greenery – plants help us to feel calm and connected to nature. There is plenty of blossom and greenery about right now. So, take your secateurs out for a walk and see what you can find. Position as a focal point in the room – on a windowsill, dressing table or chest of drawers

Pictures and wall art – remember how I said about the positives of an impersonal space? When you consider pictures for your room think landscape, abstract or nature rather than family portraits. I like art that is personal so try to find an image that means something to you – maybe a photograph of a favourite landscape, or a piece of artwork that helps you to feel calm and thoughtful.

By now, your room should be looking and feeling great. Prepare it for your grand entrance – curtains closed, mood lighting on and scent active.

Get into holiday mode

Now it’s time to think about what you wear and how you feel when you retire here in the evening. Comfort is key – ensure your favourite pair of pyjamas are clean (and possibly ironed!) and don a pair of fluffy socks – unless it’s too warm! If you’re in the mood for snuggling, but it’s a bit warm simply leave your window open to let in the cooler evening air. If you get sun in the late afternoon, close your curtains earlier, so it doesn’t heat up as much.

If your days are fraught, start with some self-care. Try a bath, sitting outside and enjoying a drink (no caffeine), or a simple moment or two of doing absolutely nothing.

Then in you go to your sanctuary, closing the door and enjoying your little holiday.


Lorna Rayner is a creative thinker and doer who loves home interiors, and is passionate about getting the most out of a property. At Nesh Home Staging + Interiors, Lorna helps people with their homes, including those struggling with clutter, to homeowners struggling to sell, or hoping to downsize.

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