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The Gracious Guestroom

As the holiday approaches, so do the guests.  Holidays are about friends, family, food and experiences.  If you are expecting a huge influx of guests from out of town you’ll want to keep the experiences as free from stress as possible.  After stocking up on the very best food and wine, it’s time to prepare the guest bedroom.  As the least used room in your home becomes very busy, we have developed a checklist that will leave you fully prepared and confident that your guest bedroom deserves a Five Star rating.

anali tailor made

The Bed – The most important element in the room should have:

  1. Soft, smooth, freshly laundered sheets
  2. Fabulous goose down pillows (medium firmness is best for most guests), and firmer feather euro pillows to provide support for those who read in bed
  3. Warmth – a down comforter or snuggly blanket
  4. Lovely top-of-bed ensemble that is neither too feminine nor to masculine
  5. A throw for mid-afternoon naps.

A Place to Sit – If you have the room, a comfy chair in the corner with a small side table that will hold a lamp, book and cup of tea is an inviting place for guests to rest.  If you don’t have the room for chair, a bench at the foot of the bed is great for sitting down to put on shoes or stacking unused pillows and bedding.


A Place for Luggage – a small luggage rack or even a low table of appropriate size is a fabulous addition.  It will be convenient for your guests and save your bedding and other furniture from luggage that has been tossed, handled and may have seen more than a few hotel rooms.

luggage rack

Adequate Lighting – a bedside lamp with a 3-way switch is a must, even if you have overhead lighting.  Small night lights that illuminate s the floor for sleepy shuffles to the bathroom in the middle of the night are inexpensive ways to show your guests that you care about their safety and well-being.

bedside lamp

Reading Material – A little light reading; the latest magazines that are appropriate to your guest’s interest or other books can create a personal retreat for your guests.

stak of books

Scent – Softly scented candles or a scent diffuser (keep it light… nothing too heavy) will keep the room smelling fresh and welcoming.

bitter orange dif

Robes – A pair of one-size-fits-most robes kept freshly laundered and hanging in the guest bath or closet invite your guests to get comfortable.

fairfield robe

Stock the Guest Bath – In addition to a stack of fluffy towels, on your next trip to the drug store stock up on the necessities that your guests may have forgotten to pack:  small guest soaps, a bundle of new tooth-brushes, small travel sized tooth pastes, cotton balls, a hair dryer, assorted bandages, aspirin or other headache remedies, facial tissue, plenty of bathroom tissue, disposable razors and body lotion.

bathroom necessities

Bedside Carafe – A lovely carafe of fresh water with its own drinking glass will make it apparent that you have thought of everything.

bedside carafe

Guest Book – A small guest book is fun.  Guests can jot down the date of their stay along with some notes that make each stay memorable.

guest book

Treats – There’s nothing like a few chocolate chip cookies wrapped in cellophane and tied with a bow to make your guests feel at home.

stack of cookies

Visits always give pleasure — if not the arrival, the departure.

~Portuguese Proverb

Scents of the Season

The Scents of the Season…

Close your eyes and inhale.

Unique, intoxicating and evocative, nothing is more memorable than a smell. A scent can be unexpected, momentary and fleeting, yet conjure up a childhood Christmas, fresh baked apple pie or the memory of someone dear.  Find your must-have scent in one of our beautiful candles or diffusers.


spicy apple

The Spicy Apple botanical candle is the scent of apple pie cooling on a window sill – a blend of Macintosh apple, cardamom, nutmeg and cinnamon with sweet tonka bean, vanilla extract, cloves and forest balsam.  As the candle burns a warm glow radiates from within.  Candles are $55 and $88.


nest pmpkn chai

Nest’s Pumpkin Chai Candle – You can sip your pumpkin chai latte, or save the calories and scent your home with it – wild pumpkin, spicy Madagascar chai, cardamom, ginger and cinnamon.  Candle $34


ej fireside

Woody, smoky and warm, the Elton John Fireside Candle is the scent of smoldering fireside embers, a mix of Madagascar vanilla, exotic woods, smoky embers and juniper berry.  Candle $38


ej holiday

The Elton John Holiday Candle is a blend of evergreen and balsam fir needles with rich woods and sparkling citrus.  Proceeds from Elton John’s candles go to his AIDS foundation.  Candle $38


nest holiday

Nest’s elegant Holiday collection is a heady combination of pomegranate, Mandarin orange, pine, cloves and cinnamon with a hint if amber and vanilla.  A personal favorite.  Prices start at $14



Thymes new Gingerbread candle mixes spicy cardamom, crystallized ginger, golden amber with fresh ground cinnamon  for a candle that evokes memories of Grandma’s home baked gingerbread.  Prices start at $12.50


nest birchwood pine

Nest’s Birchwood Pine collection is the scent of a majestic winter forest… white pine, fir, balsam and birch wood over musk and amber.  Prices start at $14


frasier fir

Thyme’s Frasier Fir collection is the quintessential Christmas tree scent with a blend of crisp Siberian fir needles, cedar wood and relaxing sandalwood.  If you don’t have a ‘real’ Christmas tree, the scent of this collection will fool everyone.  Prices start at $12.50

branche vermeil

Voluspa’s Branch Vermeil is like an icicle encrusted branch of winter spruce with hints of balsam, citron and sugar in a silvery mercury glass covered jar.  Candles range from $18 to $60



bitter orange difbitter orange cndl

Bitter Orange from Agraria is like s sip of spicy tea with a zest of bitter orange.  The New York Times called it “…uplifting, mysterious, and androgynous in its appeal”.  An elegant and memorable gift for yourself or someone dear.  Candle $55  Diffuser $120


sea pines

Awaken your senses with the Mer-Sea Sea Pines candle.  The crisp scent of pine brings the outdoors in. Perfect everyday, but especially for the holidays.  Candles are $15 and $32.


forest cndl

The botanical Forest candle is a complex mixture of citron, golden raspberry, shaved ginger, clary sage, fallen leaves, scotch pine, red cedar, white musk and sandalwood.  The lighted candle glows from within as it burns through its core.  Candles are $55 and $88.


Trapp-holiday-candle (1)

Trapp’s Holiday candle is almost drinkable.  An intoxicating blend of cinnamon sticks, spiced rasisns, gingerbread, burbon and vanilla… yummy.  Candle $25



Trapp’s Orange Clove candle is a blend of juicy orange, freshly ground clove and cinnamon, like a plump cinnamon roll and a glass of orange juice in one delicious and calorie free whiff.  Candle $25



Not traditionally categorized as a holiday candle, Trapp’s Frankincense and Rain evokes memories of stepping out of Midnight Mass on a frosty Christmas Eve as a chorus of Silent Night floats on the air.  It’s a blend of frankincense, incense, balsamic spice and Meyer lemon.  Candle $25



Lafco’s Feu de Bois (Ski House) candle will whisk you away to a ski lodge perched on a mountain slope.  Outside the wind is blowing the snowflakes side-ways, but you are snug and warm by a crackling fire.  Inhale the scent of burning wood with a hint of mountain spruce… transporting.  Candle $60



Pop the cork on Lafco’s Champagne (Penthouse) candle and you won’t mind staying in on New Year’s Eve.  The clean and sparkling scent has notes of ginger, grapefruit, lemon and raspberry.  Cheers!! Candle $60

Too few choices?   This is only the beginning.  Stop in if you can and experience the myriad of forms and fragrances we have to enhance your abode.  You’ll probably find a favorite for every different season.