Joint replacement is a major orthopaedic procedure used to treat joint osteoarthritis. Aseptic loosening and infection are the two most significant causes of prosthetic implant failure. The ideal implant should be able to promote osteointegration, deter bacterial adhesion and minimize prosthetic infection. Recent developments in material science and cell biology have seen the development of new orthopaedic implant coatings to address these issues. Coatings consisting of bioceramics, extracellular matrix proteins, biological peptides or growth factors impart bioactivity and biocompatibility to the metallic surface of conventional orthopaedic prosthesis that promote bone ingrowth and differentiation of stem cells into osteoblasts leading to enhanced osteointegration of the implant. Furthermore, coatings such as silver, nitric oxide, antibiotics, antiseptics and antimicrobial peptides with anti-microbial properties have also been developed, which show promise in reducing bacterial adhesion and prosthetic infections. This review summarizes some of the recent developments in coatings for orthopaedic implants.