How to recreate the luxury of a hotel bedroom at home

‘You can often pick up great bedding bargains in department store sales’

All three designers say that calm colours, rich fabrics and layering will help to add that luxe feel to your bedroom. Photograph: Getty

All three designers say that calm colours, rich fabrics and layering will help to add that luxe feel to your bedroom. Photograph: Getty

 

Longing for hotels to reopen next month? Remembering the feeling of stepping inside your hotel room and breathing out a contented sigh at the prospect of spending even one night in its luxurious splendour? Why wait? You can enjoy a bit of pampering at home by pimping up your own bedroom.

Interior designer Anne Tuohy says there are many things we can do to recreate the feeling of a luxurious, boutique hotel-style bedroom at home, starting with the floor.

“By adding a plain-coloured, plush, cleanable rug or carpet, you will experience pure luxury the minute you step out of bed,” she says.

“Next, as your bed is the focal point, you should make a bold statement with it. I like to use customised, oversized velvet upholstered headboards for maximum effect, and you can opt for neutral or bold jewel colours – with deep buttoned, crystal buttoned or brass stud detailing. Or you can go for lineal or horizontal upholstery. But the secret is in the height and I always go 60 inches high from the top of the mattress and fix the headboard to the wall.

“The next step is to dress your bed in crisp, freshly ironed white Egyptian cotton linen, going for the highest thread count that you can afford. You can often pick up great bedding bargains in department store sales. By piling on cushions and throws in tactile, co-ordinating fabrics, you will get instant glamour.”

‘Your bedroom is a place for rest and romance so ditch the TV and the mobile devices and learn to enjoy this precious haven of relaxation and sleep.’ Photograph: iStock
‘Your bedroom is a place for rest and romance so ditch the TV and the mobile devices and learn to enjoy this precious haven of relaxation and sleep.’ Photograph: iStock

Anne, aka The Room Junkie, says if you are tired of your bedroom furniture, just add a lick of paint and maybe some decorative gold or crystal knobs to transform the entire look of the room. And make sure to consider the lighting as this can make a huge difference to the overall look.

“When choosing bedside lamps, opt for tall, skinny varieties with beautiful shades,” she advises. “These are more elegant than short, squat ones, will complement a tall headboard and offer better light when reading in bed. And if you have some that are the right shape but the wrong colour, paint the bases and add a new shade.

“And for your central pendant, add a beautiful crystal chandelier or contemporary equivalent for a touch of romance. You could also layer your window treatments and hang a soft, full-length voile for privacy and then layer it with a blackout lined curtain which complements your colour scheme.”

John Lewis & Partners Harlow Eqyptian cotton duvet cover €120-€140, Arnotts.
John Lewis & Partners Harlow Eqyptian cotton duvet cover €120-€140, Arnotts.

As someone who suffers from neck and shoulder pain, pillows are very important, and some hotels even have a menu for guests to choose the perfect one to suit their needs.

I recently started using The Perfection Pillow which is made by back specialist Noel O’Connor (reflexpillow.com) and its combination of firmness and just the right amount of softness equate to perfection.

Foxford misty grey Percale plain dye housewife pillowcases, pair €25 at Arnotts.
Foxford misty grey Percale plain dye housewife pillowcases, pair €25 at Arnotts.

Expert Avril Murphy Allen agrees and says the bed should be the focus of every bedroom refurb.

“Everyone deserves a good night’s sleep so the first place to start is with a comfortable bed,” she says. “I would encourage people to indulge in linen which feels fresh and soft such as the 100 per cent organic cotton options from whiteandgreenhome.com which is incredibly soft.

“I would also advise choosing a good supportive pillow, from Brown Thomas or Arnotts online, and adding some extra overfilled pillows to make the bed look luxurious and inviting – but don’t add more than five or six on a double bed.”

Like Tuohy, Murphy Allen also suggests adding some drama to your headboard by covering it with a luxurious fabric such as velvet and, if possible, adding wide bedside lockers (750mm if space allows) at either side of the bed in order to accommodate necessary items.

Wallis Young organic 300 thread count duvet set Clay, €70-€130.
Wallis Young organic 300 thread count duvet set Clay, €70-€130.

But she says, all clutter, like creams or glasses, should be kept in the top drawer.

Fellow interior designer Denise Smith agrees and says getting rid of “stuff” will make a huge difference to how luxurious your bedroom feels.

Bedroom in Dublin by Denise Smith. Photograph: Eoin Smith
Bedroom in Dublin by Denise Smith. Photograph: Eoin Smith

“I cannot stress enough the impact a good decluttering will do for you and your space,” she says.

She also suggests placing a mirror behind the lamp on a bedside table to give your room more light and make it feel larger.

“It is a simple but very effective trick.”

All three designers say calm colours, rich fabrics and layering will help to add that luxe feel to your bedroom.

“When it comes to colour, for me it has to be a calm palette, a mix of whites and neutrals as muted, pared-back hues create a tranquil sophisticated space. Wallpaper also brings texture and warmth,” says Murphy Allen.

“Paint your room in a restful white, taupe, grey or a soft green, blue or blush shade, in a matt finish,” adds Anne Tuohy. “And accessorise with wall art, framed photographs, fresh flowers and your favourite candle. It is a good idea to create a signature scent for your bedroom as its familiarity will help you to relax and drift off to sleep.

“But, most importantly, your bedroom is a place for rest and romance, so if you can, ditch the TV and the mobile devices and learn to enjoy this precious haven of relaxation and sleep.”

Tips from a hotel housekeeper

Mary Flannery, executive housekeeper at the five-star Ashford Castle, advises on how to create the perfect hotel bed.

1. Super-size your duvet
For the ultimate sense of luxury in the bedroom, make sure you always go a size up in a duvet for maximum impact. And for extra comfort, mattress toppers are non-negotiable, feather and down or microfibre being the best choices for an extra layer of comfort.

2. Pillow Talk
A firm microfibre pillow for support and a duck down pillow for comfort are the perfect choices. “Never place the pillows flat, instead place them upright to give a finished look and complete the look with a neatly folded throw in a complementing colour at the end of the bed to add interest and texture.”

3. Protection
Good housekeeping also means choosing a good mattress protector that fits just like a fitted sheet, making them easy to put on and take off. The same goes for pillows, a pillow protector is essential.

4. Bedmaking
White bedding symbolises a sense of luxury and relaxation. Mary recommends two drops of fabric softener in a spray bottle of water and spritz to keep linen fresh and presentable. As for the fabric type, always cotton over polyester to avoid overheating at night and choose a minimum of a 300 thread count for the fitted sheet.

5. The special touches
A holder for your bedside essentials is ideal to place your jewellery, glasses, hand cream and other accoutrements to avoid the room looking scattered. Candles and diffusers are perfect to help us unwind and relax. Lighting is also essential for creating the perfect ambience, so carefully choose lamps with low wattage bulbs to help soften the feel of the room. And if space is no object, a comfortably dressed chair is a real luxurious statement piece and perfect for reading.