Alexandra Champalimaud’s Tips for Creating a Welcoming Guest Room
A designer of sumptuous private residences and hospitality hot spots such as the Carlyle in New York, the Hotel Bel-Air in Los Angeles, and the Gainsborough Bath Spa in England, Alexandra Champalimaud is well aware of the value of a truly appealing guest room. “Having an inviting bedroom is the most beautiful thing you can do for anyone coming to stay at your home,” says the New York–based designer. “It shows people you’ve prepared a really comfortable place for them.” To ensure our guest rooms are as welcoming as possible, we asked Champalimaud for her top design tips. There’s just one potential downside to following her advice: Your visitors may never want to leave.
Prepare a luxurious bed “The bed is the most important thing in the room, because everybody wants a good night’s rest,” says Champalimaud. Ensure the mattress is firm yet supple, top it with a mattress cover, and then add the highest-quality sheets you can afford. She prefers cotton in the winter (her favorite bedding is made by her daughter-in-law, Sandrine Champalimaud) and linen in the summer. Add a downy duvet in colder months and a lightweight blanket when it’s warm outside. “If you put out a duvet when it’s hot,” she notes, “it just looks like you forgot.”
Add a rug “Unless you’re in a monastery, stepping onto bare floors from your bed is cold and unwelcoming,” says Champalimaud. “So place a rug under the bed. When your guest wakes up and puts their feet on the ground in the morning, it provides comfort.”
Set the bedside table “A bedside table is there for a reason,” Champalimaud says. “I leave a carafe with filtered water, with a glass on top, so it’s there in case they get thirsty.” And, for a decorative touch, “it’s nice to have a vase with flowers. It can be simple and small, even just a single stem, to serve as a reminder of nature.”
Layer the lighting To create a warm, relaxed vibe, proper lighting is key. “You’ll ideally have windows that provide good natural light during the day, but also a very soft indirect ceiling light that’s warm and brassy,” says Champalimaud. “Then, lamps on the bedside tables are essential for reading and convenience as you climb into bed.” And you needn’t wait until a guest’s arrival to turn them on. “If they’re arriving at night, don’t let them walk into a dark bedroom,” she says. “Leave one on.”
Install blackout window coverings While window coverings that offer more decorative appeal than light control are fine in some rooms of a home, that’s not the case in a guest room. “You really should provide blinds or curtains that allow your guest to black out the room, because some people can’t sleep if there’s too much light,” Champalimaud says. In a pinch, “even a simple roller blind can make all the difference.”
Include a seating area Not all of a guest’s time will be spent sleeping. “If you have the space, you should put a lounge chair in the room as a place for people to flop down and catch their breath,” she says. “Place it next to the window so they can sit and look out. Then put a small table next to it as a perch for their coffee, book, or laptop.”
For more guest room inspiration, look inside some expertly appointed examples from theAD archive.
Source : ArchitecturalDigest.com