11 guest bedroom ideas that’ll impress anyone who comes to stay

These thoughtful touches will surprise and delight your guests.
Photography: Maree Homer

Picture this: You’ve shopped, styled and decorated your own bedroom to create a private sanctuary, but suddenly have visitors on the way and are short on guest bedroom ideas.

Hosting loved ones and friends for extended stays in our homes is a joy we have truly come to appreciate in recent years. As Anna Wood, principal designer of Picchio Interiors, says: “More than ever, families and friends are wanting to reconnect and make up for lost time apart.”

Delighting visitors with a hotel-inspired suite that feels blissfully inviting may be easier than you think. “Creating a welcoming, nurturing space for guests with all the creature comforts makes for a beautiful and relaxing retreat,” says Kate Walker, founder and director of design studio KWD.

So, take a look at these decor ideas to create a luxury guest bedroom that says ‘snuggle up and stay a while’. But be prepared for one thing – your guests may never want to leave…

guest bedroom ideas navy blue upholstered bedhead
(Credit: Photography: Maree Homer)

Choose shades to set the tone

From walls to furnishings, use colour in your guest room styling to set your visitors’ hearts aflutter. Whether you opt for lively hues to brighten the space or soothing shades to promote rest and relaxation, the possibilities are vast. Or, you may wish, suggests Kate, to harmonise the guest room decor with the rest of the home, “so that it’s in keeping with the overall aesthetic”.

Create a spa-like experience

Turn the bathroom into a pamper zone with fluffy towels, scented handwash, a hairdryer and other guest room essentials. “Add some special touches to create a spa-like retreat – even a towelling robe and slippers would be lovely to add to the five-star experience,” advises Kate.

guest bedroom ensuite with freestanding bath
(Credit: Photography: Armelle Habib / Interior Design: KWD Styling and Greenhouse Interiors)

Go for multi-functional furnishings

Many guest retreats double as a home office, second sitting room or playroom when visitors are not in town. Make a multi-functional space transform with ease by incorporating versatile pieces that work for you every day while also providing clever best bed solutions, such as a storage ottoman. “Pull-down beds are becoming very popular,” says Anna. “You could also think of including a desk area within a wall of wardrobe cabinetry to create versatility.”

guest bedroom with abstract art above bed
(Credit: Photography: John Paul Urizar)

Include personal touches

The element of surprise can be a delightful decorating tool in a guest retreat. Evocative artworks, bespoke handcrafted pieces (such as the pieces on the wall above) and even unique flea-market finds can all go a long way to injecting a joyful sense of style and personality into the space. “It’s you that your guest has come to visit, so why not decorate the room in line with your style and personality?” says Anna.

guest bedroom ideas with teal feature wall
(Credit: Photography: Abbie Melle)

Prioritise comfortable bedding 

Giving a bed a style makeover will always equate to high-end comfort. And there’s nothing like softly rumpled layers of breathable bedlinen (think 100 per cent cotton and linen) to look and feel extra luxurious. “A comfy bed is also vital, with a great mattress or at least a quality mattress topper,” says Kate. “Pillow options are a really nice touch, as is easy access to additional bedding, such as sheets, quilts and blankets.”

guest bedroom ideas with bunk beds
(Credit: Photography: Derek Swalwell / Interior Design: Adelaide Bragg)

Add bunk beds for extra fun

Guest room ideas should consider needs for anyone you have staying over – whether it’s in-laws or parents on babysitting missions, or kids themselves having a sleepover. If you have a large spare room you’re planning on renovating, consider bespoke bunk beds – they’re the perfect option for visiting family or when it’s your turn to host kids’ sleepovers. Design features such as nooks for books, a statement railing and a sturdy staircase rather than the usual ladder make for a comfortable and stylish guest retreat. All that’s left to do is add beautiful soft furnishings, from a rug to a selection of pillows and cosy throws or blankets, and storage baskets for guests’ belongings that can double as bedside tables.

Make the space memorable

Long gone are the days when guest-room styling was viewed as an afterthought. Now it’s regarded as the perfect opportunity to make a beautiful statement of its own. So why not consider pops of colour, an eye-catching print or wallpapered feature wall in your guest bedroom decor? “If you love wallpaper, but are not brave enough to use it in other rooms, then the guest bedroom could be a good place to try it out,” says Anna.

guest bedroom ideas pink and rattan
(Credit: Photography: Nikole Ramsay)

Keep it clean 

As inviting as crisp white sheets, a pristine guest room that has undergone a thorough spring-clean will always sparkle. “Give the room a good vacuum, place fresh linen on the bed and open up the windows,” says Anna. And don’t forget that it’s the extra touches that can make a stay truly memorable. “For grandparents, a homemade card left on their pillow – or hidden under it! – by the grandkids will be sufficient to make them feel welcome,” suggests Anna. With a guest bathroom, think practical meets pretty. “It needs to feel like a luxurious space, and be clean, tidy and well laid out with open-shelf storage for cosmetics and toiletries,” says Kate.

guest bedroom ideas ensuite with wooden benchtop
(Credit: Photography: Chris Warnes)

Eliminate clutter

The perfect guest sanctuary can be as much about what you leave out as what you include. Clear the room of clutter, while prioritising storage. “A considered guest room allows space for all of your guests’ belongings,” says Kate. “A spot for their overnight bag, hanging space with enough hangers for their clothes, and shelves for folded items and shoes.” Also consider furniture roomy enough to store luggage and spare bedding.

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