Guest Bedroom Ideas

Spare Room Furniture & Decor

While having visitors stay over can be a bit stressful, creating a chic and comfortable guest room for family and friends makes get-togethers much more pleasant. When picking out the right furniture for your spare room, you’ll need to consider the size of your space, your guests’ needs and how you can use the room between visits.

In this article, you’ll learn how to:

Guest Room Essentials: What Should a Guest Bedroom Include?

In order to be comfortable and function well, every guest room needs to have at least the most basic bedroom furniture, including a bed, nightstand and dresser.
In order to be comfortable and function well, every guest room needs to have at least the most basic bedroom furniture, including a bed, nightstand and dresser.

The guest room furniture you need varies depending on the size of your space and how you want to use it between visits. However, certain pieces work in almost any bedroom. Whether you have a dedicated guest suite or a spare room that doubles as an office, understanding a few bedroom decorating basics will help you host company in style.

Which Bed Is Right for Your Guest Room?

Queen beds provide plenty of room for visitors to rest comfortably
Queen beds provide plenty of room for visitors to rest comfortably

The right bed size and design can mean the difference between cramped quarters or a comfy night’s rest. To decide which type of guest room bed is right for your home, consider who will be visiting. How many people usually stay with you? Will you have adults, kids or both? Answering these questions helps you determine the best choice among several kinds of beds perfect for visitors, such as:

  • Bunk beds: Kids love staying the night when they can cozy up in fun and functional guest room bunk beds. Available in colors like black, gray and brown, these space-saving frames stack mattresses vertically, opening up your floorplan for additional bedroom furniture while leaving plenty of room for kids to play.
  • Twin beds: Make your guests’ visits twice as nice by choosing twin beds for spare rooms. Two twin-size beds offer versatile sleeping arrangements when family and friends come to visit. Functional pieces, like twin storage beds and twin bookcase beds, give visitors a convenient place to put their belongings, too.
  • Trundle beds: Need to accommodate both adults and kids? Ideal for a guest room, trundle beds offer a standard bed and a hidden pullout drawer with a mattress for little ones. You can also skip the mattress and use the extra storage space for linens, pillows and towels.
  • Low-profile and platform beds: If you’re considering a full, queen or king bed, try simple styles like low-profile or platform beds. Low-profile frames make getting in and out of bed easier for older guests. Also, platform beds eliminate the need for a box spring, so you can save your budget for more guest room decor.

Choosing a Bedside Table

Nightstands add extra storage to a spare bedroom and provide space for reading lamps, tissue boxes and other little details that make guests feel at home. Become everyone’s favorite host by stocking bedside tables with items that visitors might need like phone chargers, bottled water or toiletries. You can find nightstands in styles such as traditional, contemporary and rustic to suit your decor, including:

Guest Bedroom Dressers: Unpack and Unwind

Giving guests a place to unpack is a thoughtful way to make a spare bedroom feel homey and welcoming. To choose the best guest bedroom dresser, look for a compact chest of drawers. Small chests let guests unpack their suitcases while leaving floor space for other spare bedroom furniture.

Which Mattress Is Right for Your Guest Room?

A critical part of your guests’ experience is getting a restful night’s sleep. When choosing a mattress for your spare room, take your time. Research various comfort levels and features until you find the best mattress for a guest room that fits your budget and offers overnight visitors full support. For added convenience, you could also consider purchasing a mattress-in-a-box that’s delivered to your door.

Mattress Size

To make the most of your guest bedroom, a queen– or full-size mattress should do the trick. These beds provide plenty of surface area for couples while leaving the rest of the room free for other furniture. You could also opt for a twin-size mattress if you have limited guest room space.

Mattress Comfort Level

Comfort is a critical factor when choosing the best mattress for a guest room. To give your visitors more back and spine support, opt for an extra firm or firm mattress. For house guests who need softer surfaces that cradle the body, check out plush or ultra-plush beds.

Mattress Features

Many mattresses have features that cater to different sleeping preferences. In rooms that tend to get a little warm, select a mattress with built-in cooling gel to help regulate body temperature. You can also browse beds with memory foam support or opt for an innerspring mattress with advanced coil technology to relieve pressure on aching joints.

Other material types available include hybrid and latex mattresses.

Convenient Extras for Good Guest Rooms

Once you have all the essentials, think about extras you can add to heighten your guests’ experience. Do your friends and family enjoy spending time on their laptops? Would your visitors enjoy pampering themselves first thing in the morning? When deciding which items you want for your guest room, consider the interests of those who might be staying over.

Help Them Look Their Best with Mirrors

When you’re living out of a suitcase, a dresser mirror is a huge bonus. If your guests share a bathroom, they can save time by fixing hair or makeup in the mirror while their partner takes a shower. A larger mirror makes checking clothes for creases and wrinkles easier, too. Mirrors are also a smart small guest bedroom idea because reflective surfaces make spaces seem larger and brighter.

If you have room to spare, consider a large wall-mounted mirror or a full-length decorative mirror for your guest room. Larger, longer mirrors give visitors a better view of their appearance and attire before coming down for breakfast or leaving first thing in the morning.

Selecting a Desk for Your Space

Dedicated guest rooms sit empty most of the time, so adding a stylish desk helps you get more out of your space. A home office and guest room combo is a popular small bedroom idea that’s easy to put together. Small writing desks with drawers make the best desks for guest bedrooms, as they take up less space and offer storage, so you can tuck away odds and ends when company comes.

If your guest bedroom is on the smaller side, save space by including a vanity that doubles as a desk as part of your layout. Vanities provide a roomy surface for laptops, notebooks and decorative accents like vases and sculptures. Consider purchasing a vanity with a coordinating mirror so guests can easily switch from using their computer in the evening to getting ready in the morning.

Desks provide extra storage and are a practical addition for those who use their room as an office between guests.
Desks provide extra storage and are a practical addition for those who use their room as an office between guests.

Spare Room Space Savers: Small Guest Room Ideas

Daybeds and floor lamps take up less floor space and help small guest rooms seem larger.
Daybeds and floor lamps take up less floor space and help small guest rooms seem larger.

Packing all the comforts of home into one room while offering an open, relaxing vibe is the main challenge of guest bedroom decorating. Spare bedrooms tend to have less floor space, so making a small room look bigger is a top priority. Check out these tips to optimize your guest room decor while making the most of your square footage:

  • Add a bench: A guest room bench is a useful furniture option in a spare bedroom. Along with giving the space a luxurious vibe, end-of-the-bed benches function as a chic luggage rack as well as a place to lay out clothing or sit while putting on shoes. Storage benches also let you organize blankets, pillows, bedding or toiletries in preparation for your next overnight guest.
  • Use a sleeper sofa: A sleeper chair or sofa sleeper is the perfect guest room space saver. A small seating area gives visitors a private place to retreat for the evening, but it’s tough to fit a sofa and a bed into smaller floorplans. These pullout chairs and couches offer a fold-away mattress to accommodate guests’ seating and sleeping needs all in one.
  • Try a daybed: A hybrid between a bed and a sofa, a daybed serves as a cozy spot to relax during the day as well as a comfortable bed at night. Use daybeds in spare room setups like studies, media rooms and home offices where a standard bed might look out of place or take up too much space. If you need some extra storage in a guest area, check out daybeds with a bookcase.
  • Go modern: While this idea might initially give you pause, shopping for modern furniture in your bedroom can help cut the clutter. Minimal designs tend to fit better in compact spaces than bulkier traditional decor. If you love the classics, give modern guest bedroom ideas a vintage twist with retro or rustic accents.
  • Use the walls: Another smart small guest bedroom idea is to look for items you can mount on the walls. Vertical space, such as the empty walls above a bed or dresser, is prime spare room real estate that often goes unused. Hang a shelf on either side of the bed to hold a clock or photos, add some homey touches with wall decor or install sconce lighting to save space.
  • Take advantage of storage: Use bins, totes and bookcases to keep the space neat and organized and help the room feel less cluttered. If you’re combining spaces, a bookshelf with cubbies is one of the best home office and guest room ideas. Pick up some fabric bins that fit neatly into each cubby for tidy storage that still feels laid-back and casual.
Furnishings with clean lines help guest bedrooms feel more spacious, while weathered finishes add to the room's welcoming and rustic aesthetic.
Furnishings with clean lines help guest bedrooms feel more spacious, while weathered finishes add to the room's welcoming and rustic aesthetic.

Guest Room Decor for a Comfortable Visit

When friends or family decide to forgo the hotel room and stay with you, it’s because they want the welcome only you can provide. As a result, making a guest room comfortable should be your top priority. Here are a few tips that allow you to roll out the red carpet with inviting guest room decor:

  • Consider lighting: Ample illumination makes any room cozier. Blend style and function by mixing table lamps or floor lamps to create unique bedside lighting. If your spare room has high ceilings, install a chandelier as guest room lighting to free up floor space for other furnishings.
  • Splurge on linens: Pampering visitors with premium linens and fluffy accent pillows shows you care. Layering is a great guest room bedding idea that lets you customize depending on the season. You’ll likely only buy one set of guest room bedding, so select a coordinating light coverlet, medium-weight quilt and heavy comforter or throw blanket that you can mix and match.
  • Take a bold or neutral approach: There are two main approaches to guest room decor. Either keep the colors and accents soothing for a peaceful stay or take design risks to create a memorable experience. Try using earth tones by painting walls in a soft sage color and adding a floral duvet or nature photos. For a chic retreat, opt for a bright statement headboard instead.
  • Spend time on the details: The smallest guest bedroom ideas can have the biggest impact on an enjoyable stay. A place to fold clothes, a plush ottoman, soothing guest bedroom wall decor or a small framed sign sharing your Wi-Fi password lets visitors know you consider them part of the family.