Placement is everything.

Christmas Tree Family Room
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The most classic, must-have holiday decor item is the Christmas tree. You and your family will choose one, adorn it with ornaments, wrap it in lights, and place presents underneath it. And by Christmas morning, it serves as the gathering area to ring in the holiday together. But where exactly should this all-important piece go in your home? Fortunately, there are quite a few options. 

We spoke with Melissa Hanle of Hanle Interiors about how to navigate Christmas tree placement in your home. Depending on the layout and other features, there are four areas she recommends. So, before you choose the best Christmas tree, take note of the following hot spots: 

Option #1: The Living Room

Christmas Tree Fireplace

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Hanle says this is her number one choice for your Christmas tree, and you get bonus points if your living room (or another main room) has a window that’s visible from the street. “This allows you to share the beauty of your tree with your neighbors and adds to the decorations on the exterior of your home,” she says. “The living room works well because it is centrally located for maximum exposure but isn’t a high-traffic area.” 

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Because you’re sharing your tree with the neighborhood, you should also be mindful of potential blank spots as you’re decorating. Place lights and ornaments all around your tree, so it will shine from each vantage point. 

One more thing to be aware of? Sun exposure. If you place your tree near a window, it may get too much sun and dry out more quickly. But if you can’t place your tree near a window, or simply don’t have one that looks out onto your neighborhood, Hanle recommends a corner on either side of a fireplace. “This creates a wonderful ambiance,” she says. “It’s very warm and inviting. Complement the tree with greenery on the mantle, placed asymmetrically to balance out the tree, if necessary. And stockings, of course!”

Option #2: The Family Room

Christmas Tree Family Room

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Next up on Hanle’s list of top spots is the family room, which is a high-traffic place year-round. “The scent and festive feel of a Christmas tree adds to the many cherished memories made in your family room,” she says. “Given the way family rooms are used, it’s best to place the tree in one corner far enough away from the TV, so the lights don’t distract from the picture quality.” 

If you have the space and budget to accommodate this idea, Hanle also loves purchasing two Christmas trees: one “main tree” in the living room and a smaller one in the family room. “I typically advise decorating the family room tree with the crafty or handmade ornaments while reserving the more elegant ornaments for the living room,” she says. “I have a German feather tree I use for the family room, which I decorate with all of my children’s handmade ornaments from over the years.”

Option #3: The Foyer

Christmas Tree Door

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Hanle also loves the idea of placing the Christmas tree in an effortlessly special spot: in the curve of a spiral staircase in the foyer. This way, the first thing you and your guests will see is your decorated Christmas tree. “This creates a perfect alcove for the tree!” she says. “Opt for a slim but tall tree so it doesn’t impede the walkway too much, and complement the tree with garland wrapped around the stair rail to draw the eye up.” 

To mix it up a bit, you can also arrange multiple small trees in a variety of sizes in your foyer. If you like this idea, Hanle suggests keeping decorations simple to avoid overwhelming the entrance to your home. “Simple brass bells in various sizes are an easy way to decorate multiple trees,” she adds.

Option #4: The Porch

living Christmas trees

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If you want to spread all the Christmas cheer but don’t have a spot where your tree is visible to the neighbors, take it outside. Hanle is a huge proponent of placing a fresh tree on your front porch. “It is so charming and inviting,” she says. “Try to keep the decorations natural and minimal (they will get dirty!), and be sure to coordinate with the other decorations on your house’s facade. The front porch is also a good location for the current trend of multiple potted trees.”

Of course, this won’t be the tree for your holiday gifts and excessive decorations. However, this is a festive and unique way to prepare your home for the holiday season—from the inside out.