Today, most guests expect a private bathroom. There are some who won't mind sharing a bathroom, although they are becoming more and more rare. Carefully look over any bathroom that guests will use from their viewpoint.
- The sink, shower, toilet should all be impeccable. The importance of this cannot be overstated.
- There should be no unsightly mold or mildew on tiles, grout, around faucets or on the shower curtain.
- Mirrors should shine.
- Floors should be spotlessly clean.
- Be sure to include a wastebasket. Use a throw-away liner for more sanitary cleanup.
- Paper cups are more sanitary for guests than reusable glasses.
- Extra towels, soap, tissues and toilet paper should be easily accessible.
- Adequate lighting and high quality mirrors in the bathroom are a must for both men and women.
Safety is also critical in the bathroom.
- A non-skid floor surface or rugs with a non-skid backing should be used.
- A non-skid surface or mat in the tub or shower is also needed.
- Check the temperature of your hot water to assure that no one will be scalded.
- Make sure that there is ample hot water for all your guests needs.
- Do faucet drip? This can be irritating to a guest trying to get a good night's sleep.
- Another safety feature you may want to consider is the use of GFI circuits in the bathroom to help prevent shock.
After looking over your bathroom situation, a quick fix up with some fresh paint or paper and a few new linens may be all you need to start your bed and breakfast. However, if many of the basics are lacking, you should do some remodeling immediately. Do some research and use your imagination to come up with solutions to common bathroom problems.
- If there is too little storage space, consider hanging shower caddies or corner shelving.
- Shelving with pegs will add extra hanging space for towels.
- Some wicker plant stands can also hold towels.
- You may want to box in plumbing features under the sink and use louvered doors for a decorative effect.
- An old dry sink or a chest of drawers can be made into a working sink by cutting out a hole in the top and placing the sink bowl and fixtures in place. If you're handy and can do it yourself, you may be able to save quite a bit of money in the remodeling and redecorating process.
If the bathroom is shared, you'll want to encourage guests and/or family members to leave the bathroom in good condition for the next user. You may want to leave a nice wicker basket or some other attractive holder with cleaning supplies in sight. This hopefully will inspire guests to take a moment and clean up after themselves. If that isn't a strong enough hint, some type of clever sign can be used to get the idea across to everyone.
This series of worksheets and information was originally written by Eleanor Ames, a Certified Family Consumer Sciences professional and a faculty member at Ohio State University for 28 years. With her husband, she ran the Bluemont Bed and Breakfast in Luray, Virginia, until they retired from innkeeping. Many thanks to Eleanor for her gracious permission to reprint them here. Some content has been edited, and links to related features on this site have been added to Eleanor's original text.