Restricted travel and cancelled trips away mean we’ll all be staying closer to home this year. Here’s how you can create a vacation vibe at home so you can holiday without leaving the house.
Use a summery colour palette
What’s your favourite place to holiday and what colours are on display there? Do you love the chalky pastels of Morocco? The crisp blues and whites of Santorini? Or the festival brights of Mexico? Let your favourite destinations inspire a colour palette at your place that makes you feel like you’re on holiday all year round. Some colours that will help you channel summertime are coral, yellow, blue, flamingo pink, seafoam blue, turquoise or sage green (don’t team all these colours together unless you want to make a real statement!). If coloured walls are not your style start with a neutral base like fresh white and bring one or two of these accent colours by way of layered homewares such as cushions, bed linen, homewares and art.
Create a relaxation zone outdoors
No summer holiday is complete without some time relaxing on a lounger. Choose a sunny spot to set up an outdoor living zone with loungers or chairs and a side table. Make your favourite cocktail or mocktail, put on some escapist music, grab a magazine or book and settle in for a few hours in the sun.
Manicure your gardens
Resorts often feature gardens that create a restful atmosphere and help you relax on holiday. Layering is used as a technique to achieve a green wall effect with taller plants positioned at the rear, mid-size in the centre layer and smaller at front. Fragrant flowers and creepers add a sensory element, paths add an element of discovering around every turn, and lighting on garden beds and mounted on walls creates yet another atmosphere in the evening. Spend some time in your own garden considering how to make it more experiential – even if it’s just a balcony garden!
Create a hotel-style bedroom
Treat yourself to high thread-count sheets, good quality bed linen, and stacked cushions for reading and relaxing. Add a comforter that can be folded back for temperature control and comfort and have bedside table lamps and candles for evening atmosphere. Create another zone in the room by adding a chair, side table and lamp next to the window for reading, relaxing and enjoying a different viewpoint. I’m not sure calling room service will work, but you can always add a bottle of water and some mints next to the bed for a truly realistic hotel experience!
Treat yourself like a guest
It’s the little luxuries at hotels that make the experience such a big hit. Borrow ideas from your favourite hotel and use matching body products when you shower, then wrap yourself in a fluffy robe and slippers afterwards. Make your favourite tea or coffee blend and take time to appreciate the experience. Set the table in the evening, light candles and play music when you’re dining. Finding small ways to pamper yourself throughout the day helps rest and relax you.
Explore your neighbourhood
Wandering around holiday destinations and exploring all the secret spots they have to offer is part of the joy of a vacation. Act like a tourist in your own town. Try out new coffee spots, find different viewpoints, visit the markets and dine out locally. Taking a guided tour in your own city or town may not sound that exciting, but you’ll be surprised what you learn!
Champion the details
Great holiday homes have that extra attention to detail. Try adding a console table at your entranceway with a bowl for keys and basket for shoes. Put bespoke soap in your bathroom and scented candles in the living spaces. Have a basket of blankets on hand for guests and interesting coffee table books to browse. Install a fire pit outside where you can wrap up in blankets, toast marshmallows and watch the stars. Adding features that inspire different experiences than your usual make you feel like you’re discovering new experiences without having to leave the house.
Use breezy curtains
Seeing floor to ceiling sheer curtains dancing in the breeze evokes a holiday feel. Sheers are a great option in rooms you don’t need blockout such as over living room sliders, as they create privacy but still let in natural light.
Use natural materials
Many of us enjoy holidays where we can get close to nature. Take inspiration from resorts you like and develop a palette of natural materials that create one cohesive look and feel. If you like the Balinese look include bamboo poles, teak, thatching and stone. If Europe is more your style then bricks, ceramic tiles, plastered concrete and wooden shutters will help achieve this aesthetic.
Photography by Helen Bankers