A client of mine is hosting friends soon in her new house, and asked what sort of staples she should provide for overnight guests. Ultimately, a lot of guest-room essentials are comforts that you’d find in most homes: fresh towels, a bedside light, and a bathroom stocked with tissue, extra toilet paper, and toiletries like shampoo and toothpaste. I also think it’s important to have a plunger on hand—if only to save your guests some embarrassment should a plumbing accident occur.
I also like to include a lavender spray to ensure a good night’s rest (just spray it on the linens!), a few good books, a pad of paper and pen, a travel guide if they’re out-of-towners, and a pitcher of water so they can help themselves. You may also consider throwing in some ear plugs or an alarm clock. A small wastebasket is also helpful. If your guests are staying for a while, offer to let them use your washing and dryer to clean their clothes. It’s no fun to bring back a pile of dirty laundry.
Basically, you just want to make your guests feel welcome and comfortable in your home. Fancy furnishings and flowers are nice, but it’s the little touches that truly make for a wonderful experience.