Laundering Bed Linen for Hotel Use – What to Consider When Buying Linen

Perfectly laundered bed linen is not a consideration for hotels, it is a public demand and a hygiene requirement. If there is one reason a guest will choose to immediately leave a hotel room (and probably never return) it is because of poorly laundered bed linen.

This article briefly looks at what is to be considered when buying bed linen for hotel use: what fabric lasts the longest and which washes most effectively.

Longevity
All bed linen has a life span. This is best described as to how many washes the linen can withstand whilst still retaining its quality. The easiest way to ensure that linen lasts longer is to choose Egyptian cotton. The purchasing will cost more, but this is offset by two factors: the longevity and the initial quality that the customer experiences. So why is Egyptian cotton better?

In cotton size does matter and it all has to do with the length of the cotton fibres. The conditions in Egypt produce the longest fibres (more than 1.5 inches) and this means they are stronger and finer, giving the feeling of softness.

Thread count is an important part of that feeling of comfort and luxury. Most popular cottons have a count of approximately 150, with good quality sheets starting at around 180. 200 is the point at which a thread count reaches into the luxury range.

Yet it is not just about the number of threads per square inch. Egyptian cotton fibres being longer allows for finer, thinner threads which means there are more to the inch. But it also has to do with the 'ply' of the threads – like the number of layers in toilet paper – twisted together and how these are woven tightly to form the fabric. Quality Egyptian cotton has two ply which means smoother, finer thread.

Longer threads mean there are less of them and so there are less ends to fray. They are also thinner and so they are more tightly packed which makes the sheets stronger. Finally this combination of thin, long threads makes for a more stable, tight weave which is unlikely to bobble and it can absorb more dye to give longer lasting colours.

Percale
'Percale' is also a term worth looking out for, because this refers to the type of weave used. Percale gives a fabric strength and this means it will last longer in multiple washes. Percale is generally only found in high thread-count fabrics.

Mercerization
This chemical treatment process for cotton was invented by a Lancashire man, John Mercer – hence 'mercer'-ization. The modern development of this process has resulted in a treatment which allows for a softer and stronger fabric. Egyptian cotton that has been treated in this way is the most durable and it will be less likely to fade or lose its high-quality feel in repetitive washes.

Effective Washing
Egyptian cotton can absorb more water in the wash. In fact, Egyptian cotton often gets better as it is washed again and again, bringing greater softness to the tightly woven fine threads. Economising on bed linen can mean that with repeated laundering the savings are lost in a one-use-one-wash setting like a hotel.

The Laundering Process
If you have spent extra to reap the benefits of Egyptian cotton then it is important that the choice of laundering respects this quality. If the wrong detergent is used or in incorrect amounts, then even the best cotton linen will grey, particularly in certain hard water environments.

When considering the choice of laundering services it is important that the provider be able to answer which system they are using and why – ask for references from other hotel clients and check these references to ensure that they are genuine.

Sample Hotel Reservation Letter – What to Include and Why

Just follow the steps in this sample hotel reservation letter structure and you should have no unexpected troubles.

Before you begin:

Hotel reservation letters can vary in style, But just make sure you give the reservation staff all the information they need to make sure there are no misunderstandings or disappointments on arrival.

Every specific piece of information should be in a separate paragraph. This makes for easier reading.

Keep it short and sweet (it's not an essay), and do not forget the following information:

1. Opening (example):

Dear Sir / Madam

My name is (your name) and I would like to book a (type of room) in your hotel for (number) nights.

2. Dates and times: (important)

I / We will be arriving on (date, including the day of the week) at approximately (time). Departure will be on (date, including the day of the week) at (time).

Notes: -State the date and approximate time of arrival and departure because it helps the staff know which guests will be arriving first to prepare the way for them, so waiting time for your room is kept to a minimum.

-It's Always a good idea to also include how many nights you will be staying in brackets. This is a good way for the reservation staff to double check the length of your stay as hotels count nights and not days when preparing your invoice.

-Remember, Even if you arrive there at 2 o'clock in the morning, that night counts and you are seldom entitled to remain in your room after 12 o'clock noon on your departure date.

3. Number of people: (important)

How many adults? How many children? (Always include children's ages).

4. Room type (s) and preferred location (s):

Single, double, suite, ground floor, top floor, overlooking the sea, etc.

5. Board preferences: (important)

Self catering / bed & breakfast / half board / full board / all-inclusive

Note: make sure the hotel you are considering has the services you desire as not all hotels offer things like all-inclusive, and what you get for each type of service may vary from one hotel or country to another depending on their policies (find out before making your reservation to avoid disappointments).

6. Special needs / desires: (optional )

Some people may have health conditions which may require special attention (migraine sufferers would probably want a quiet room far away from any entertainment facilities, for example). Business men / women may need an internet connection in their rooms, while others may just have special preferences (overlooking the sea, rooms on upper floors, etc). These should be specified in your letter.

Note: Obviously the needs of those with medical conditions will be given more importance than other preferences if the hotel is fully booked, so do not be surprised if you can not get what you wanted unless you have the option and have paid for it specifically.

7. Facilities: (depending on the hotel )

If there are special facilities (sauna, jacuzzi, etc.) which need to be reserved before using them, you may wish to do so in advance to avoid waiting.

8. Contact information: (important)

Especially your phone number, cell phone and / or fax number.

* The main thing to remember is to include all the important information above and keep the hotel reservation letter short. The hotel staff prefer it that way and it helps to avoid confusion. You can even use bullet text to display the information.

What To Expect From A Luxury Hotel

Hotel guests paying huge rates have the right to expect certainly luxury hotel standards, in rooms, in service, in dining, and everything else an excellent hotel offers.

Things Luxury Hotels Must Offer

Intelligent, easy and respectful planning – Booking must not be complicated. In other words, the reservation process must be simple. And this should be applicable whether you book directly with the hotel, through a travel agent, online, or through its association.

Easy and fast check in and check out – Nothing is more frustrating than waiting on a lengthy check in line if you have spent the day just getting to the hotel. Your luggage must not take more than 10 minutes to arrive in your room. Also, it must offer express check out and quickly settle any issues on your bill.

You get the room you want – The room you are assigned to must be the type of room you want. It must accommodate your request about room level or category, physical location in the hotel, a pool, and special room classification.

Excellent features – You are paying for a great room to enjoy different features. These will include a quiet room, original art on the walls, a firm mattress, robes and slippers, a work surface, adequate storage and hangers, high-quality sheets, a clock, and an efficient, quiet cooling and heating system. It needs to have the overall attention to aesthetic detail.

Enlightened service features – Hotel guests must get the feeling that they are valued and known. They need to expect hotel personnel who will greet them with at least a smile at each encounter. Hotel housekeeping must be thorough, quiet and dependable. Maintenance personnel and handymen must appear at your room minutes after you called for their needs to attend to your jammed coffee maker, locked safe, or what ails you. Outdoor workers like gardeners should not interfere with the guest's enjoyment of the property.

Excellent hotel dining – Luxury hotels will offer guests with at least one excellent place to eat. Even a small hotel must offer its guests a place to eat and another place to drink. Of course, the restaurant and bar must be attractive. Room service is also being offered. Some also include breakfast with the room rate. Oftentimes, these breakfasts are excellent buffets. But there are those that offer complimentary breakfast, including cottony bagels, packaged cereals, and many more.

Indeed, if you are paying a high rate, it is expected that you get to enjoy more benefits. And this is applicable to choosing a hotel. A 5-star luxury hotel Certainly can offer you excellent products and services.

Fire Retardant Fabrics in Hotels and Bed and Breakfasts – Regulation or Sensible Precaution?

Since 2006 there has been much controversy in the UK about the new regulations introduced in fire safety law. Many in the industry see the changes as over-the-top and part of the 'nanny state'. In this article we'll briefly look at both what the law requires and consider the benefits of taking precautions, even when the law does not explicitly demand it.

Over many years the UK government has increasingly targeted all forms of fire risks, with the aim of reducing the number of deaths and injuries caused by fire. In the postwar years there was a steady rise in these numbers and the government took notice. The number of deaths from smoke inhalation was of particular concern, as this rose sharply from the 1950s onward.

The reasons for this trend are disputed, but the fact that modern fabrics and fillers caused heavily toxic smoke when burning eventually prompted the government to regulate the supply of fabric and furnishings, because the more toxic the smoke from a fire the faster a person is incapacitated .

It is perhaps obvious that manufacturers and suppliers must comply with government regulations on fire retardant fabrics, but in 2006 the new regulations changed requirements for all business premises. Fire safety law was implemented by the 'Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005'. Now, businesses are no longer required to have fire certificates but instead must conduct a risk assessment to prevent fires by reducing risk. The law makes it the responsibility of the business owner to ensure the safety of everyone who uses their premises.

There are specific guidelines for 'sleeping accommodation' which directly apply to curtain material. Hotels must meet the requirements of BS5867 Part 2 Type B when furnishing a room with curtains. This is a test where a flame is applied to the fabric for 15 seconds. In summary, this requires that if the fabric were to come into direct contact with a flame it would have a fire retardant quality for a short time by not burning to the edges or falling apart whilst burning.

There are basically two types of flame retardant (FR) fabrics:
1) those which have been treated after manufacture; and
2) those in which the FR quality is 'built-in'. These are called 'inherent FR fabrics'.

Where a fabric has been treated it must also be able to hold its FR quality after repeated washing.

Purchasing flame retardant fabrics from a reputable company with products that more than meet the requirements ensure fire safety and conform to the law. Look for products labelled 'FR' and ask whether they meet the safety standards for hotel use.

Unlike the requirements for curtains, for bed linen the new regulations only state that certain safety standards should be considered for 'sleeping accommodation' as a matter of fire prevention. The law does apply, though, to all the components of the actual bed (including head-boards, mattresses, sofa-beds, futons and other convertibles). Perhaps less obvious is that it also applies to pillows and even throw cushions.

Yet fire retardant bed linen is still worth considering as a matter of fire prevention, because even when prohibited people still might smoke in a hotel room – particularly if they are leaving the next morning. When you can not control how a guest behaves prevention is the only sure cure.

Protecting your investment is one important factor, yet safety is even more vital and protecting the lives of guests and staff should matter. If as the owner you sleep in your B & B then your own safety is also at risk. FR fabrics are widely available for bed linens and cost just a little more than a standard cotton-product. They could end up saving more than pounds and pence.

10 Ways to Make Your Hotel Room Romantic

There are several ways that you can transform your hotel room in to your own private romantic hideaway. Of course, you either need to hire someone to pre-stage the room for you or you need to find your way in to the room before your significant other gets there.

Below are the top 10 ways to improve the look and feel of your guest room:

  1. Music. The best way is to have an i-pod with portable speakers (many hotels now have an i-pod docking station) so that you can pipe in her favorite music to fill the room. Not too loud, though.
  2. Lighting. There is nothing worse than walking in to a room filled with bright lights. Turn off all of the lights and strategically place some battery operated votive candles around the room (no fire hazard, allowed by hotels. Do not make the same mistake that some have made – using real candles only to have the smoke hit super sensitive detectors and cause an alarm to go off). Close the drapes / shutters.
  3. Rose Petals. When the person you are trying to impress opens the door, they will find a trail of rose petals leading from the front door to the bed. Sprinkle lots of rose petals on the bed as well. As a special note, most hotels do not like the use of real rose petals but you can use them as long as you are careful (eg if there is a white comforter in the room, protect the bed by placing a romantic blanket or throw on the bed and then place the petals on top).
  4. Flowers. Roses are king but some people do not care for them. Find out what her favorite flower is, and place an arrangement in the room (or can just be a single flower on the bed or placed in a bud vase).
  5. Edible decadence. Chocolate is an aphrodisiac and a favorite for romantic occasions. Skip the bargain basement heart shaped box and go for more of a high-end truffle from a local chocolatier or candy shop.
  6. Scent. Have you noticed how some hotel rooms smell like cleaning products? That can spoil the mood. Pick up a room fragrance spray from a store like the Body Shop. Or you can purchase a "plug in" and insert it into one of the room's outlets – just pick a romantic scent (like vanilla or jasmine)
  7. Bedding. Most nicer hotels have great sheets and comforters these days. But if you want to add something to the experience, bring your own Satin sheets and re-make the bed (yes, a little bit of extra work but worth it) or add a throw or faux fur blanket to the bed.
  8. Bubbly. Champagne always marks a special occasion and will go well with the chocolates. If not in to alcohol, then Sparkling cider is a great substitute (or non-alcoholic sparkling wine).
  9. Love letter. You've set this whole room up – but why? Tell your special someone in a note – but not a piece of binder paper. Buy a nice card, write something special and leave it in the room on the bed.
  10. Extras. Some other nice touches are having a bath ready (decorated around the rim of the tub with candles and rose petals), a framed picture of the two of you in the room, and a massage kit. Some couples may opt to hire someone for a couples massage – but would you rather massage your partner or have some stranger touching them?

Hotelier Tips – The Importance of the Hotel Bar

There is no single thing that makes a good hotel. Good service, clean spacious rooms and a decent restaurant are a must, and while many of the top hotels around the world are packed with swimming pools, gyms and spas, these are not the things most people want from a good hotel.

Any businessman, salesperson or weekend guest, just wants somewhere clean, friendly and welcoming to lay their head of an evening. However, there is one thing that most customers expect of any hotel, no matter the size, rating or location – a good hotel bar.

No matter what the size of hotel, guest house or bed and breakfast, you should never underestimate the importance of the hotel bar. It does not matter if you do not have the space or resources for a pool, spa or gym, every hotel, no matter the size needs a good well equipped hotel bar.

Having somewhere to relax and perhaps have a chat with other guests is all part of the hotel experience and most guests make use of the hotel bar at some point in their stay.

You do not need a large cocktail bar equipped with every imaginable drink either. If you only have a small space you can still run a good and inviting bar in your hotel just by remembering a few things when you are setting it up.

Ensure the bar is well stocked. Not having enough drinks is a mortal sin for anyone running a bar so ensure you have enough in. You do not need a vast array or beers wines and spirits either. If you are running a small bar stick to the basics. As long as you have the basic beers, spirits and a couple of good wines there will be something for everybody.

Make sure you have a good bar equipment supplier. Making sure you have enough glasses, cork screws and other bar equipment is just as important as ensuring you have enough drinks. Its a good idea when setting up a hotel bar to choose a bar equipment supplier who has a good range of stock as no matter how ell prepared you are, you may never no what you may need in the future so having a hotel and bar equipment supplier you can trust is important.

Hotel Supplies and Amenities for Encouraging Better Guest Experience

The Hotel industry is expanding with every passing day due to the boom in leisure and corporate tourism. Frequency of travel has increased over the past decade, leading the hotels to compete in every manner to attract more guests and give them a comfortable stay. Hoteliers know the fact that if they want their customers to choose them over the competitors they have to provide something extra to the guests. Most important one is by offering the quality and right hotel amenities to the guests at suitable rates. If you want your hotel to succeed than it should keep itself ahead in the current trends which will ensure better occupancy rates.

You can start on the hotel amenities services by providing the basic things and supplies like toiletries, towels, hangers, etc. These basic hotel supplies are targeted towards providing the guests ultimate convenience and feel at home factor. However the definition of basic hotel supplies differs on the hotel class and type. The Hotel industry is a highly competitive industry and competes with one another for business. Thus the hotel amenities and supplies that they provide are part of the competition which concerns things like- how many amenities are being offered, its types and the quality and design of the products.

Guests' expectations of such supplies are affected by the type of hotel and its sophistication level. Hangers, ice boxes, absorbent towels, exquisite bed linens, wooden luggage racks, etc these are basic hotel supplies for mid level hotels. The main aim for providing such extra luxury items is to increase the occupancy rates of the hotel rooms. As the level of the hotel goes up, so does the quality and number of hotel supplies and amenities.

Hotels and resorts that are 5-star and above provide a high level of guest services and amenities to attract and sustain high-end guests. For instance- shaving kits, medical kits, microfiber Bathrobe and towels, shaving mirrors with fog-free feature, in-room lockers, refrigerators, mini bar, etc are just some examples of high quality hotel supplies of such luxury hotels and resorts. Not only do such additional amenities attract new guests but they also increase the occupancy rates.

Guests give rating's for the hotel supplies and guest complementaries they utilize based on there quality and there convenience. When an hotelier is in the process of deciding which hotel amenities they would provide, a number of factors would influence the decision like- the budget, expectations of their guests, type of guests they receive, etc. The value and importance of hotel supplies can not be overlooked as they have direct Affect on the occupancy rates.

Luxury Hotels Vs Budget Hotels

A hotel is defined as "an establishment that provides paid lodging on a short-term basis." (See 1.)

In the early years of the hotel, accommodations were very basic, usually a room that has a bed, a cupboard, a small table and a washstand. These days, most rooms are equipped with modern facilities. In addition to bathrooms, there is air conditioning, a telephone, television, Wi-Fi (internet connectivity), and a mini-bar with snacks and drinks.

Hotel accommodations throughout the years have changed dramatically. There are several different types of hotels to suit almost every individual's tastes, needs and most importantly, budget. The two main types of hotels are luxury hotels and budget hotels. Although both have similar basic amenities, these two types of hotels have significant differences:

Budget Hotels

As the name suggests, these hotels were established for people who have a small budget and therefore want to spend as little as possible. The rooms in these hotels usually have the basic facilities such as a bed and washing facilities and most of them have communal toilets. Most budget hotels are older. They are clean but not as fancy as luxury hotels. Some of these budget hotels are equipped with worn fixtures and they do not offer anything free except maybe a simple breakfast or newspaper which is sometimes included in the price that they charge.

Rates for budget hotels vary greatly depending on the location. In Los Angeles alone, budget hotels can charge anywhere from $ 45 to $ 119 per day.

Luxury Hotels

Luxury Hotels are for people who are used to lavish lifestyles. The employees at these hotels are specially trained to cater to everything that the guests need. They aim to provide their guests with all the luxuries they desire during their stay. These hotels were built in such a way that their guests' stay is absolutely as stress free as possible. In addition to basic amenities in luxurious rooms, these hotels are usually equipped with spas that offer massages, gyms that have the latest exercise equipment, beauty centres that offer a wide range of beauty treatments, swimming pools, in house bars and restaurants and laundry service .

These services of course come with a much higher price compared to budget hotels. Other services that you can have in luxury hotels are free room service, free newspapers and even better channel selections on your television. You even get to use robes and slippers while staying in these hotels.

As with budget hotels, rates for luxury hotels vary greatly depending on the location. Luxury Hotels in London charge anywhere from 240 to 525 pound sterling per day.

There is truth in the saying "You get what you pay for." So, for people who have the money to splurge on expensive hotel accommodations, staying in a luxury hotel would be best if they would like to have the best service that money can buy. But for people who have a limited budget but need a place to stay while they are away from home, they are better off staying at budget hotels.

For travellers who wish to get reservations way ahead of time, in the hotel of their choice, they can go online and check out the websites of different hotels all over the world.

1. Http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hotel

Factors Which Influence The Choice of Hotel Accommodation

Traveling is a way of life in this busy world and every time you travel away from your city of residence, you need a place to stay in the new city. Obviously this takes the form of hotel accommodation and since hotels are of different types selecting one which suits your needs in the best possible way is imperative. Although time consuming, the task of picking the right hotel is truly rewarding because it is the one and only factor which can make or break your stay.

Among the various factors which influence booking a room in a hotel, the foremost is that of budget. Wisdom decries that the traveler must first ascertain the amount which he would be willing to spend on accommodation and then launch on a quest. This would not only shorten his search but also enable him to compare various properties within the same range. As a result, identification of the best possible deal would be really simple and you would be able to enjoy the trip without being nagged with a feeling of having been fleeced.

The second factor which impacts the choice of appropriate hotels is that of location and it is always better to choose a hotel which is closer to your purpose of the trip. Suppose your objective is that of attending a conference, then you must opt ​​for a hotel which is in close proximity to the conference hall. Likewise, if you intend to shop till you drop dead then you must select a property which is centrally located with respect to shopping malls and plazas. In addition to cutting down your traveling time this would greatly minimize your traveling expenses as well.

Next you must make in-depth inquiries pertaining to the standard of the hotel and the amenities provided to the clients. Some of the basic facilities which are a must-have are 24-hour room service, laundry facility and Wi-Fi. In addition if there are other amenities like swimming pool, spa and gym, then you can look forward to spending some of your time in pursuing recreational activities. Inclusion of meals and shuttle services to and from the airport can also be inquired after.

Many of these key factors can be checked online since majority of the hotels nowadays maintain a prominent website presence. Hence, once your dates of arrival and departure have been finalized, it is just a matter of indulging in research and making an online booking rather than follow the traditional method of booking through a travel agent.

The Importance of Hotels and Accommodation in Promoting Tourism

In the modern times, the way people spend their vacations has undergone a great change. People like to spend good times with family and friend while at the same time exploring various tourist places across the globe. As a result the tourism industry across the globe has seen an unprecedented growth which in turn has also resulted in tremendous growth in the hotel and accommodation facilities.

Comfortable hotels and accommodation facilities play a very important role in popularizing any tourist destination. If a person, who is quite far away from home, gets to enjoy the same facilities and comforts as he enjoys at his home, then he is bound to become attached to the place. On the other hand if the tourist ends up at a place where the hotels and accommodation facilities are not satisfactory, it is quite likely that he might never return to that place.

Perhaps that is why, hotels and accommodation facilities being made available at different tourists spots, have shifted focus on providing maximum comfort to tourists at reasonable rates. It is also vital to provide comfortable accommodation to people from diverse economical backgrounds. While five star hotels can cater to the needs of affluent visitors, small and medium range hotels and lodging houses are available for use by a middle class traveler.

Blog reviews are also vital that information about all the hotels and accommodation facilities available in a particular tourism spot is available to people quite easily. For this there can be no better option than internet, as most tourist gain information about the hotels and accommodation facilities through this medium only. The other ways are by making booklets containing information about the hotels and accommodation facilities available at train and bus stations.

The information provided to the tourists should be detailed and correct. It should contain the information related to room rentals, types of rooms, catering services, check out times, pick and drop facilities etc. Additional information about the significant tourist spots in the area can also be provided both on the net as well as the booklets, to promote not only the hotel but the tourist spot as well.