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Adorned Christmas Tree Wreath and Garland Inside Living Room

Christmas is the most wonderful time of year, and what better way to celebrate the festive season than with a family holiday in Cornwall? As Christmas creeps closer, our property experts are sharing their top tips on preparing your holiday home for Christmas.

Guests staying over the Christmas and New Year period will be looking for the ultimate festive break with loved ones, in a home-away-from-home. There are several things you can do to make their experience extra special, from warm and cosy interiors to seasonal treats.

Preparing your holiday home for Christmas

Use our quick links below to navigate the content or read on for the full lowdown on preparing your holiday home for Christmas.

Deck the halls with Christmas decorations

Christmas decorations in living room - preparing your holiday home for christmas

Christmas is a time for families to make memories. A time to experience a holiday that they will remember for years to come.

Spread a little festive cheer by decorating your holiday cottage with a Christmas tree and some co-ordinated decorations. We recommend an understated colour scheme, like silver or gold, which strikes a balance between festive and unassuming. A fresh wreath hung on the door and some twinkling lights (PAT tested of course) nestled in trees or shrubs create a near-fairy-tale experience for children coming away for Christmas.

Christmas trees have been a part of the festive traditions since the 1800s. Choosing a tree for your holiday home can be a big decision. If you’re going to keep on top of tree maintenance (and hoovering!) we recommend a traditional scented Norway Spruce available from local garden centres, Tregothnan in Truro and Tregaminion Farm. Alternatively, you can opt for a non-drop Nordmann Fir.

If a real Christmas tree is not an option, we suggest going for a good quality artificial tree that can be used year after year. Don’t forget to deck the halls when preparing your holiday home for Christmas. Tinsel, baubles, and lights are a must!

Warm and cosy interiors

cosy interiors and log fire at the old post office holiday home

Guests escaping for Christmas are far more likely to spend time indoors than those holidaying in August, so it is fair to assume that the demand for toasty rooms will be high.

Nothing makes a winter night cosier than lighting the fire and watching the flames flicker. Chestnuts and marshmallows optional!

Set the heating to warm. Be sure to leave instructions for heating and hot water in your guest information folder. For more information on what to include in your guest information folder read our blog ‘how to put together a guest information folder for your holiday home’.

The Yuletide season is a time for feeling snuggly; so, check the radiator settings and ensure that your duvets are the appropriate tog. Extra blankets and throws are always welcome in bedrooms and living areas. Hot water bottles are a nice touch to help guests feel extra cosy.

Other important things to note when preparing your holiday home for Christmas:

  • Keep baskets of logs topped up if you have an open fire/wood burner.
  • If your boiler uses fuel, check supplies, and top up ahead of a guests’ arrival.
  • Ensure your boiler and hot tub is serviced well in time for the Christmas period.
  • Make sure chimneys and flues are swept regularly.
  • Ensure your housekeeper checks both fire alarms and carbon monoxide alarms on every changeover, leaving spare batteries if necessary.

Festive extras & Christmas hamper

Christmas hamper, welcome gift when preparing your holiday home for Christmas

Guests really appreciate a thoughtful treat at the start of their well-earned holiday, so why not spread a little Christmas joy, and get creative? Welcome hampers are always well received and encourage repeat bookings, but if there is ever a time to go that little extra, Christmas is it!

Why not choose a selection of seasonal goodies. Christmas pudding, spiced hot chocolate, mince pies with clotted cream. Candy canes or gingerbread men are a nice touch for the children, you could even include a decorating kit. Whatever you choose, try to think about everyone in the party and don’t forget some ‘paw-fect’ treats for any furry friends.

There are many local businesses, such as Classic Cornish Hampers and Purely Cornish that offer stand out Christmas hampers. We can organise a welcome hamper for your guests, please do get in touch.

Whatever you settle on, remember that presentation is key – a cake stand, and cloche lends a decadent edge to the simplest of offerings. Be sure to leave a hand-written Christmas card for your guests too.

Christmas events in Cornwall

Christmas events in cornwall

The South West offers a hive of activity over the festive period. There are many Christmas events in Cornwall, from festive markets to Boxing Day swims. When preparing your holiday home for Christmas highlight local events that may be of interest to your guests. Provide a ‘what’s on guide’ that will help guests plan their Christmas stay.

Christmas events to include in your ‘what’s on guide’:

  • Christmas markets featuring local produce and seasonal treats
  • Christmas carol services and churches offering a Christingle service
  • The best Christmas light switch-on and where to see Christmas lights
  • Where to see Santa in Cornwall
  • Popular local shops for some last-minute Christmas shopping (include any discount code/offers)
  • Restaurants/pubs serving Christmas Day lunch should your guests choose not to cook
  • Boxing Day sea swims
  • Best places to celebrate New Year’s Eve

Prep the games cupboard for festive family fun

family playing board games at christmas

No matter what the age, board games are a necessity at Christmas. Nurture the competition and family rivalry by providing a selection of board games for entertainment.

Here are a few of our top picks when preparing your holiday home for Christmas:

  • Monopoly
  • Jenga
  • Pictionary
  • Scrabble
  • Cluedo
  • Twister
  • Trivial Pursuit
  • Pack of Cards

Board games provide hours of entertainment, especially when the Great British weather strikes!

There are many other ways to make your property more family friendly, why not include books, arts and crafts such as colouring-in and DVDs. A good supply of entertainment keeps the children quiet and parents happy! Giving your holiday home the recognition it deserves with great reviews and repeat bookings.

Recommendations for holiday home owners

christmas dinner table with crockery and glassware

As we all know, Christmas is a time of overindulgence, meaning families will be looking forward to extravagant dinners together. Fridges will be packed full, and the oven will be in constant use. Pay extra attention to ensure these are sparkling for guests to use. Oven liners can save an awful lot of scrubbing and are easily and cheaply replaced.

Similarly, cooking utensils, ovenware, crockery and glassware will be in high demand – so there should be plenty of everything and all in good order. It is a good idea to keep a stock of spares (at the property) for your housekeeper to draw upon, especially glasses and dinnerware.

The volume of refuse and recycling generated over Christmas will undoubtedly be higher, so make sure your refuse and recycling instructions are clear for guests. If you need help with finding a commercial waste supplier, we can help!

It may feel like an overwhelming task when thinking about preparing your holiday home for Christmas, but with a bit of thought and professional advice you can transform your property this festive season.

For more useful tips and holiday home owner advice head over to our Owner Advice blog.

Cornish Cottage Holidays are happy to answer any holiday letting queries you may have. So, to find out more about letting with us, request your FREE owners guide today or call our team of experts on 01326 573808 today.