After sleeping in over 300 hotels around the world, we were determined to create a bedroom that would bring the 5 star luxury hotel experience home with us
Long term travel comes with many joys; flying around the world visiting far-flung corners of the earth, immersing oneself in different cultures, trying new and exotic foods, and experiencing what it'd be like to live a different type of life. We of course love all of these things, but for us however, one of the best parts of traveling is where we stay each night. We can think of few better feelings than coming back to a fantastic hotel at the end of a long day of site-seeing, kicking off our shoes and relaxing with a bottle of wine in the room, or lazily waking up and splurging on breakfast in bed; it's no surprise to us that many of our fondest travel memories have happened in hotels.
Whether it's ornate and glamorous, or slick and modern, we loved how hotels enable us to get a feel for what it'd be like to live in different types of environments. And because we love staying at hotels that have a focus on design, some of the best "souvenirs" that we've picked up over the years has been a lot of inspiration for how we'd like our home to look and feel when we finally decided to settle down again. Little did we know that time would come so soon.
In the summer of 2017, Chris and I learned that we would soon be welcoming our first child, so we decided to settle down in one of our all time favorites cities; Amsterdam. Now, having been traveling full-time since 2013 we had very few possessions -- and we knew that setting up a new house was going to be a lot of work, but it would also give us a chance to incorporate many of our favorite things from life on the road into our new home. In particular, we agreed that one of the most important things we could do was invest the time and energy in making sure our bedroom (and our bed), was as comfortable and welcoming as the best hotels we stayed in while traveling. A tall order for sure.
Finding the Perfect Mattress
Having stayed in over 300 different hotels over the past few years, you can say that we've had a lot of experience with sleeping in different beds, so we knew that just any old mattress was not going to cut it for us. So when we went shopping for a bed around Amsterdam, we were looking for a mattress that would take us back to some of our best hotel stays. Yes, we were asking a lot from our mattress.
Even though we visited 5 or 6 different stores (at a wide range of prices) we left each one unsure. It was great to be able to lay on the mattresses in the store -- but it didn't give us the "real" feeling; There were no sheets on the bed, no pillows, nothing. Ultimately, it was hard for us to tell if it would actually work for us at home.
Finally, we turned to the internet and started reading up what others were saying about different types of mattresses. During our research we came across one brand that sounded particularly interesting to us; Eve Sleep. This was a brand that we had not seen in stores because they only sell their mattresses online. Admittedly, the idea of buying a mattress on the Internet did seem a little strange to us -- I mean you can't lay on the mattress first, or even feel it see how firm it is! But, after we learned that Eve would deliver the mattress (for free), let us try it for 100 days (for free), and even let us return it if we didn't like it (for free) - we honestly figured we had nothing to lose! So 2 or 3 clicks later, and our search for the perfect mattress search came to an end.
A few days later our Eve mattress arrived, rolled up into a tiny little box. It took us about 60 seconds to unpack it, and place it on our bed frame. We quickly made the bed with some sheets, a few pillows, and our comforter... And although it was the middle of the afternoon, we hopped in -- and we were not dissapointed. First, even though it was delivered rolled up in a box, it literally sprung to life and looked like any other normal full-size mattress. It also felt super comfortable... Not too soft, but not hard either. It really had like a nice balance, and both Chris and I agreed that it was just about perfect -- and that almost never happens.
In fact, as we laid there on our new Eve mattress, we were so satisfied that we decided to go "all-in" and replace our bedding as well; new sheets, new pillows, and a new comforter. Luckily Eve also sells a full-line of bedding; so we opted to try them again, so that we'd be sure to have a full set of bedding that all matched, and fit the mattress perfectly.
Linens, Pillows, and Comforters, Oh My!
It's hard to beat the simple pleasure of feeling cold crisp sheets envelop you as you sink into the plush mattress. Or on chilly nights being cozied up under a feather-lite down comforter. Like I said, simple pleasures.
Being as it was summertime in Amsterdam, the idea of having soft linen sheets really appealed to Chris and I, so we selected a a set of two-toned light grey linen sheets, pillow cases, and a matching duvet cover. We also picked up a lightweight microfiber duvet that we swear is just as comfortable as a down feather duvet, but is much more hypoallergenic, which helps give us a better nights sleep.
We also took one of our favorite luxury hotel bedroom features and re-created it at home; The pillow menu. We placed 4 pillows on our bed; two memory foam from Eve and two incredibly soft and fluffy pillows. This way we're able to easily switch between a soft pillow and a firm pillow depending on our mood.
When the bedding arrived a few days later we we thrilled. Everything fit the bed perfectly, and and a the different linens all looked great together, creating a really cohesive look to the bed. And best of all, everything was super comfortable.
Bringing the Feel of a Luxury Hotel Room Home
The last step of re-creating a luxury hotel bedroom in our home was setting up our room. One of the things we always loved abut staying in hotels was how clean and simple the rooms are. For our bedroom, we wanted to create an environment that was de-cluttered, but not sterile, and that was modern, but yet felt very cozy...
Even though Chris and I are both pretty minimal, when we lived in San Francisco we did tend to accumulate a lot of "stuff". Now, after having sold all of our possessions and starting over again in Amsterdam, we had a chance to start fresh and we were determined to try and keep our bedroom a little more simple this time around.
Taking a cue from some of our favorite hotel properties, we decided to really pay attention to the details; selecting nice throw pillows, tastefully placed pictures, and some fresh flowers and plants to add a bit of life to the room. We're also huge fans of candles, so even though we almost never see them in a hotel, we added in several to our room to help make the space for cozier.
Aside from those few items, everything else would have to go. We didn't want any more clothes, knick knacks, etc, cluttering up the space any longer. It was hard to do, but you know what -- Not only has de-cluttering the room made the space more calm and serene, its also makes picking up each day so much easier!
Making Each Morning Perfect
You know that feeling when your on vacation, and you wake up in the morning, stretch out and think to yourself for a second; "maybe today i'll just stay in bed?"... We'll we're not going to say that happens everyday for us now -- especially with a newborn -- but it definitely does still happen!
Even though we're not in a 5 star luxury hotel room, we still try to make each morning as relaxed as possible. For us, the perfect morning begins with having coffee in bed. Whoever wakes up first, tiptoes downstairs and starts the coffee. Sitting up in bed, with a fresh cup of tea or coffee just feels indulgent. And when Axel starts to get up, having a comfortable place where he can come and be with us for a little cuddling helps us feel like we’re on vacation and don’t have to hurry off. Aside from the kitchen, our bedroom really has become a place where we can all relax and be together as a family.
When we first started talking about getting a new mattress we didn't know where to start. Shopping for a mattress is overwhelming! There are so many options ranging from size, hardness level, filling options, etc. etc. Honestly, we just wanted something that we could try in our home, because at the end of the day, the only thing that mattered to us was how comfortable the mattress was. Bluntly said, we chose Eve Sleep because it was convenient to order; with just a few clicks we were done. And with free delivery, free returns, and a 100 day trial period, we knew we had nothing to lose..
Our entire experience with Eve Sleep was perfect. Add to that, they also provide a one-stop shop for linens, pillows, comforters, etc... It honestly just ended up being super convenient -- much unlike our wasted weekend bouncing from mattress store to mattress store all over Amsterdam.
One thing we've discovered now is that after a trip we absolutely love coming back home and crawling into our own bed. We’ve now been sleeping in our cozy linens and on the mattress for a few months and everything is wonderful. We’ve had great night sleeps and have really enjoyed our new set up.
Although we’ve slept on a lot of beds since we first began our travels, I never realized the importance of a good bed, until I knew what a bad mattress felt like. Now I know what to look for in a mattress and how to set myself and our family up for a good day...it really does start with a good night sleep and a good morning!