Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Guest cottage essentials...beautiful basics and luxe delights

I dream of having a little cottage in the countryside where we can retreat from the city a few weeks a year.  One day when this dream comes true, I plan to share it and rent it to other country loving city dwellers.  As much as I love renting other peoples cottages, there always seems to be one bit missing from the kitchen, bathroom or bedroom that I miss from home.  So I thought I would put together my essential list of beautiful basics and luxe extras.
Eat & drink Essentials:
  • Jars of tea bags and sugar are so welcoming, everybody wants to pop the kettle on for a cuppa when they have just arrived.  The glass jars from IKEA (top left) have a rubber seal and will keep dried goods fresh and ready to use.
  • I really don't like mismatched crockery and cutlery.  I would rather have a whole set that is clean and simple than several more expensive sets combined together.  Is this just me?
  • Guest houses often forget to include a salad or serving bowl with serving spoons, always annoying.  And they also often forget smaller bowls to serve snacks in.   Just because I am on holiday does not mean that I want to eat straight out of the packet.
  • I would also make sure the fridge contained: fresh milk, fresh eggs, a pat of butter.

All Eat & Drink Essentials are from IKEA, except the kettle and toaster which are from Appliances Online.

Prep essentials:

One of the joys of holiday is having time to cook and enjoy a meal with family and friends.  I almost always miss something that I think is essential from my kitchen.  My basic necessities are just that, the bare bones that I need to cook enjoyably, and holidays should be about enjoying yourself after all.

  • Prep cannot even start without a good chopping board and a sharp knife.  I almost always wish I had brought my own super sharp knives along, cutting a tomato with a blunt knife is no fun at all.
  • I am always using my microplane zester (far left).
  • The rest covers most dishes from breakfast to dinner, baking to casseroles.  
  • I should probably have included some mixing bowls too...

Every thing except the microplane available from IKEA.


Cooking essentials

  • When it comes to cooking you can't beat a good set of pots and pans.
  • I can't cook with out my tongs anymore, how did I ever turn something on the grill before, or serve pasta for that matter.  
  • You have to include an egg slice for those lazy cooked breakfasts.
  • Lots and lots and lots of clean dishtowels.  

Every thing here from IKEA.

Luxe additions: 
A good casserole pot would be a good extra addition, I do love a casserole in winter.  
A few disposable roasting pans, nobody likes cleaning up on holiday.





Luxe items you will find in my cottage's bedroom and bathroom:
  • Lovely soaps at every basin, in the shower and at the kitchen basin. (I was given my Molton Brown by The Home but you can find them online)
  • Trinket boxes to store your jewellery, watches and phones in at the bedside on on the bathroom cabinet. (Dante boxes from Country Road)  
  • A thick plush bathrobe for every guest, they don't cost much and make you feel so pampered. (Soybu Spa Robe)
  • Lots of a clean towels.  When they are frayed and marked they must go (a pet hate).
  • Hurricane lantern to create safe candle light in the bathroom or bedroom.
  • Lovely bedlinen, this selection is from Pottery Barn.  Its worth buying new sets every year to make sure your guest know they will always have a bed that is fresh and inviting.  Watch out for good deals to replenish your sets on The Home, even if its simply for your own bedroom or guest room.
Luxe items for the kitchen:

  • A good olive oil, local if possible - this one from Coriole
  • Salt and pepper, I love the packaging of these grinders from Nomu  
  • A few concentrated stock pots, these ones from Knorr are my personal favourite
  • A Nespresso machine and milk frother.  I really love my morning coffee and all people need to is bring pods of their own choice.  Love this red version, the Pixie


One day when I have a little cottage of my own, these are the essentials it will have.  Let me know if I have missed any of yours.
One day...



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