The Perfect Gifts for Your Holiday Hosts

They’ve rolled out the red carpet for you, spruced up the guest room and made you feel at home during your stay. Now, that your visit’s done, you want to show your hosts some appreciation. You can go the customary route and treat them to a nice meal on your final night, or fill up their gas tank. You can think outside the box and gift them a museum membership, or make a charitable donation in their name. But if you want to leave them with a physical token of your affection and gratitude, we’ve gathered a few gift ideas that should do the trick. There’s something for foodies, art lovers, sports nuts, glam gals and more — and (almost) everything is under $50. Whether you’re contrite about overstaying your welcome, or you’re teary-eyed because your stay was so lovely that you never wanted it to end, these goodies are sure to earn you a repeat invite.


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Louis C. Tiffany Irises Scarf

Louis C. Tiffany Irises Scarf

Photo courtesy of The Met Store

Photo courtesy of The Met Store

If you broke the houseguest rule of thumb (or, worse, actually broke one of your hostesses’ belongings), then a splurge gift may be in order. You don’t have to go so far as buying them a Tiffany lamp (unless that’s what you broke!); a Louis Comfort Tiffany silk scarf will do the trick. Choose from a handful of designs inspired by Tiffany’s signature floral beauties.  

Buy it: metmuseum.org, $55-65

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Bookshelf Board Games

Bookshelf Board Games

Photo courtesy of Art of Play

Photo courtesy of Art of Play

For the hosts who love nothing more than a nice night in, give a classic board game such as Monopoly or Clue. These vintage-style editions of Yahtzee, Life and the like will avoid the fate of most game sets — frayed cardboard boxes held together by rubber bands, stacked in your hallway closet or built-in cabinet. Instead, they come disguised as handsome, linen-bound hardback books that’ll look stately sitting amongst the most valued volumes.

Buy it: artofplay.com, $40


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2-pc Monogrammed Bedside Water Carafe

2-pc Monogrammed Bedside Water Carafe

Photo courtesy of Target

Photo courtesy of Target

Send them off to the Land of Nod in style. Thanks to this water pitcher — which comes with a drinking glass as its lid — there’ll be no need for them to pad into the kitchen late at night in search of a sip. Plus, monogramming adds that extra personal touch.

Buy it: target.com, $35.99


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Fill in the Love Journal

Fill in the Love Journal

Photo courtesy of Knock Knock

Photo courtesy of Knock Knock

With this pocket-sized book, you can fill in the blanks and create a personalized book that’s overflowing with gratitude for your host. Using the book’s helpful prompts, you can take the time to tell them how you’re grateful for their meals, their comfy bed and the camaraderie. And if you get stumped by a case of writer’s block, there’s even a how-to guide to get your creative juices flowing.

Buy it: knockknockstuff.com, $10

 


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Freres Branchiaux Scented Candles

Freres Branchiaux Scented Candles

Photo courtesy of Freres Branchiaux

Photo courtesy of Freres Branchiaux

The Gill Brothers — three school-age entrepreneurs — whip up small-batch organic soy candles that’ll fill a room with bright and spicy scents. Pick from fragrances like the fir-and-teakwood tinged Caribbean Christmas or the Vibranium blue-hued Heart of Wakanda, with its notes of ginger, saffron and mixed fruits. The homegrown company also offers room sprays, diffusers and bath bombs. Plus, the enterprising siblings donate 10% of their proceeds to homeless shelters in their area.

Buy it: freresbranchiaux.com, $18-25


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Leather Travel Jewelry Box

Leather Travel Jewelry Box

Photo courtesy of Pottery Barn

Photo courtesy of Pottery Barn

Here’s something that’s both pretty and practical. Your host can nestle their baubles, beads and bangles inside the box’s ultrasuede compartments, and a snap closure keeps it all secure inside. And if you really want to earn brownie points, enclose a pair of sparkly studs in there, too!

Buy it: potterybarn.com, $34.50


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Conversion Dish Towel

Conversion Dish Towel

Photo courtesy of Crate & Barrel

Photo courtesy of Crate & Barrel

Whether they’re a culinary whiz or a kitchen klutz, every home cook gets stuck on grams, fluid ounces and centimeters from time to time. This cotton dish towel doubles as a handy cheat sheet. Tack it to the side of the fridge with a couple of magnets for a go-to guide to temperatures, weights and measurements.

Buy it: crateandbarrel.com, $5.95


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Reusable Bag Gift Set

Reusable Bag Gift Set

Photo courtesy of Baggu

Photo courtesy of Baggu

With three different fetching designs packed in one gift box, they can add some flair to humdrum errand-running. These bags are perfect for trips to the farmers’ market, the library or the pharmacy. They’re durable, they fold flat and they’re machine washable.

Buy it: baggu.com, $30


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Salt Fat Acid Heat

Salt Fat Acid Heat

Photo courtesy of Amazon

Photo courtesy of Amazon

If your host (rightly) fell in love with Samin Nosrat’s delightful culinary Netflix special, feed their newfound obsession with a copy of the chef’s best-selling book Salt Fat Acid Heat: Mastering the Elements of Good Cooking. They’ll learn kitchen basics, get cooking lessons and discover recipes for salads, soups, sweets and more.

Buy it: amazon.com, $21


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Marvel Origins Poster

Marvel Origins Poster

Photo courtesy of Pop Chart Lab

Photo courtesy of Pop Chart Lab

Superhero buffs can revel in the amazing adventures of their favorite characters with this eye-popping, informative poster. Pop Chart Lab teamed up with Marvel Comics to create a mini-comic collage depicting the beginnings of do-gooders like Captain America, Black Panther and Squirrel Girl.

Buy it: popchart.co, $37


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Baja Zen Eye Soother

Baja Zen Eye Soother

Photo courtesy of Anthropologie

Photo courtesy of Anthropologie

This aromatherapy pillow is filled with lavender and flax seeds to help them drift off to sleep serenely, whether they’re snugly tucked in bed or in the midst of a long trip. You can also pop this silk-lined cotton pillow in the fridge to provide cooling relief to tired eyes.

Buy it: anthropologie.com, $24


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5-Piece Wine Bottle Accessory Set

5-Piece Wine Bottle Accessory Set

Photo courtesy of West Elm

Photo courtesy of West Elm

After you’ve helped your host polish off a bottle (or two) during your stay, this is a great contribution to their home bar. It’s the perfect complement to their favorite reds, whites and blends.

Buy it: westelm.com, $29


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Minimergency Kit For Her

Pinch Provisions Minimergency Kit For Her - Metallic Silver

Photo courtesy of Sephora

Photo courtesy of Sephora

Give the gift of preparation. With this kit, your host will be ready for many of life’s little hiccups — from headaches to hangnails to bad hair days. The 17-piece kit includes everything from dental floss to deodorant wipes to earring backs. The flashy little pouch fits in the palm of your hand and you can slip it into nearly any purse.

Buy it: sephora.com, $18


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Umbra Giardino Herb Planter

Umbra Giardino Herb Planter

Photo courtesy of The Container Store

Photo courtesy of The Container Store

Your host can enjoy year-round parsley, cilantro, dill and more with this handy little planter perched on their kitchen window sill. Add in a few seed packets or some starter plants and you have a great gift for gardeners who may be thwarted by chilly winter weather.

Buy it: containerstore.com, $39.99


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Crushed Gold Fine Paper Stationery Set

Crushed Gold Fine Paper Stationery Set

Photo courtesy of Paper Source

Photo courtesy of Paper Source

This set of 10 blank cards will add a little glitz to your host’s desk. These gilt handmade beauties can be used for casual correspondence, holiday greetings and even little love notes.

Buy it: papersource.com, $14.95


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Baseball Park Map Glasses

Baseball Park Map Glasses

Photo courtesy of Uncommon Goods

Photo courtesy of Uncommon Goods

Hit one out of the park by gifting this set of two whiskey glasses to a big sports fanatic. The glasses feature maps of iconic Major League Baseball stadiums, as well as the team’s logo. Think of it as a high-five in gift form.

Buy it: uncommongoods.com, $35


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1000 Record Covers

1000 Record Covers

Photo courtesy of Taschen

Photo courtesy of Taschen

Maybe you’re not quite hip enough to surprise your music-loving host with some impressive, limited edition vinyl treasure; here’s an easy alternative. They’ll gladly make room on their coffee table for Michael Ochs’ 1000 Record Covers. This hardback picture book showcases the cover art from some of the most iconic album sleeves in rock from the ‘60s to ‘90s, including Simon & Garfunkel’s “Bookends” and U2’s “The Joshua Tree.”

Buy it: taschen.com, $20


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Ultra Silent Squeaker Dog Toy

Ultra Silent Squeaker Dog Toy

Photo courtesy of Amazon

Photo courtesy of Amazon

Don’t forget about your four-legged host; they made room for you, too. Treat them to a fun new toy to chomp. This Hear Doggy plush animal features an ultrasonic silent squeak toy that only dogs can hear. It’s a win-win, for both the pup and their human companions.

Buy it: amazon.com, $4.99


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L’Occitane Hand Cream Trio

L’Occitane Hand Cream Trio

Photo courtesy of Nordstrom

Photo courtesy of Nordstrom

A trio of L’Occitane shea butter hand cream will keep your host’s mitts moisturized throughout the holiday season. They can throw one in a handbag, stash one in a desk drawer and keep one sink side to keep dry weather cracked skin at bay. This set includes French-made lotions in Wonderful Rose and Delightful Tea scents.

Buy it: nordstrom.com, $29


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Yayoi Kusama Love Forever Dots Umbrella

Yayoi Kusama Love Forever Dots Umbrella

Photo courtesy of MoMA

Photo courtesy of MoMA

Brighten up a soggy winter with this Museum of Modern Art gem. World-renowned Japanese contemporary artist Yayoi Kusama lends her signature dot motif to this transparent umbrella. It’s a unique gift for the aesthete who’s showed you around to the city’s best galleries and museums during your visit.

Buy it: moma.org, $26


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Zojirushi Stainless Steel Mug

Zojirushi Stainless Steel Mug

Photo courtesy of Amazon

Photo courtesy of Amazon

This travel mug gets top marks for keeping drinks hot for hours without leaks. That makes it ideal for cold-weather hikes, chilly stadium games and that long drive to drop you off at the airport. It comes in a rainbow array of colors and 12-, 16- and 20-ounce sizes.

Buy it: amazon.com, $23-$26.99