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Decorating Diva: Travel-inspired home decor

Jessica Padykula is a freelance writer and editor in Toronto, Canada covering a wide range of topics for several online lifestyle publications. She is a regular contributor for SheKnows, covering travel, style, relationships, health and ...

Exotic decor inpiration

Welcome to Decorating Diva, where every week we share fresh, fun ways to update your home and spice up your living space! Exotic locations, unforgettable sights and sounds, gorgeous beaches, amazing food and hip hotels – these are some of the main reasons we travel. Whether you take a cross-country road trip or head to the other side of the world, travel is undeniably inspiring. With that in mind, we wanted to look at how going places both near and far can – and does – inspire home décor.

Exotic decor inpiration

Get inspired by hotels

Travel means staying in hotels, and we've all had those moments when we first walk into a gorgeous hotel room or new trendy resort and wonder how to capture some of that breezy style back at home. As a traveler by trade and home fashion design lover at heart, Salmela has been lucky enough to have seen some of the finest, trendiest and chic-est hotel decors in the world. She provides her tips for bringing beautiful hotel style into your home.

1Conversation areas

Like every hotel lobby, a great hotel-inspired home needs a place to convene and converse. Salmela suggest pairing eclectic pairs of chairs with accent drink tables to mimic conversation areas you'd find in a hotel lobby. Mix items that contrast, like something masculine and feminine, or formal and casual, for a unique look.

2Statement beds

The bed is the single most important item that anchors a hotel suite, so pick your bed first when designing your bedroom, and let everything else in the room be dictated by that focal point.

Bedroom decorating ideas from our photo gallery >>>

3Exotic prints

Hotels don't go with ordinary, so look at signature pieces that make bold statements. Interesting textiles and exotic prints - on anything from pillows to bed sheets – add travel-inspired charm to your home.


Lucite is a definite must-have hotel-inspired material, Salmela suggests. It literally adapts to any style that it's paired with, making modern styles more glamorous, and classic or traditional styles a bit fresher.

5Add one statement piece

Hotels are spaces that can go over the top with eccentric shapes and sizes. You can do the same, just in a smaller way. Pick a spot in your home to show off a one-of-a-kind conversation piece. It could be a coffee table or wall hanging or even a sculpture – the point is to find something people notice.

Salmela says travel is also her greatest source of continual education, and something that makes her a better designer. "I get to see different architecture and furniture styles and wood types that I wouldn't get to see at home," she says. "It helps me know what else is out there, available for me to use for myself and clients."

Happy travels!

Tell us

What is your favorite souvenir or memento acquired during travels?

Share with us in the comments section below!

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