Five Factors for Consideration when Specifying Bedding
While customer reviews can cover all aspects of a hotel experience, one of the most important components of a guest’s stay has always been the comfort and quality of beds and bedding so that guests can achieve a great night’s sleep.
As a result of ongoing innovation in the manufacture of hotel duvets, pillows and mattress toppers, choosing the right bedding isn’t as straightforward as it once was, and there is more choice than ever. In fact it can be a minefield! It’s no longer a choice of natural or synthetic and tog – there are many factors at play when updating the ‘all important bedding’ to deliver the ultimate guest experience.
Investing in guest sleep is essential for good reviews, returning guests and word of mouth recommendations which is why it’s important to make the right choice for the long term. Especially as it was reported in a Travel and Leisure* report that guests would be willing to pay more for a room with a good bed and bedding as they perceive the overall quality of the room to be higher with a more luxurious bed.
Whether it’s part of a full refurbishment or converting bedrooms, a simple need for a bedding ‘refresh’ or the desire to improve guest reviews, we know how much of a challenge it can be for hoteliers and owners to balance practicality and cost but also hygiene and cleanliness with the high level of expectation from guests when it comes to bedding. The Fine Bedding Company Hospitality Division has researched the top five considerations now at play.
Even though many hoteliers and owners believe that the overriding consideration is initial cost, there are many sub considerations to consider. Product selection is about making an informed decision to enable increased operational efficiencies and cost savings during the course of the product lifetime while maintaining top quality.
Synthetic V Natural
Natural filled bedding has always been traditionally used in the hospitality sector as it’s seen as more luxurious. However, with such advances in technology and how we now produce fillings, in many people’s opinion synthetic products are fast catching up, by achieving the same benefits as down with added qualities designed for modern hospitality including greater demands for practical, functional allergy-friendly and durable bedding. In addition, owners and operators need to seriously consider the costs of laundering when they’re making their choice, particularly when they’re choosing between synthetic and natural filled products.
Synthetic bedding is extremely popular in this industry, in part this is down to the need for hoteliers and owners to cost effectively keep bedding squeaky clean and like new for each guest. It is cheaper to wash synthetic bedding in-house rather than professionally clean natural filled products with such regularity. There are huge cost efficiencies to be made by choosing bedding that can be washed in a commercial machine on-site, not to mention the operational efficiencies that can be achieved by not waiting for bedding to be transported off-site and back again.
Furthermore, it’s important for bedding to withstand high frequency washing that will retain their lightness and shape time after time- who wants to have to replace bedding more frequently than is needed, especially if you can wash it and it feels like new each time.
Ease/speed of turnaround
From an operational standpoint, by using light weight bedding it dries in a matter of hours so can be returned to the room the same day, ensuring faster room turnaround. Light weight bedding also has big cost savings when it comes to the size of housekeeping teams. They can be kept to a minimum if a single person can change beds. As a knock-on effect, by changing the bedding within a 24hour cycle, stock bedding can also be kept to a minimum.
Too hot or too cold?
Whilst not always considered high priority, the tog of a duvet is ultimately the deciding factor on whether a guest is too hot or too cold. Before choosing a tog rating, hoteliers and owners must consider their location; “are you located in the warmer or cooler climes of the country?”, their clientele; “do you mainly welcome business or family guests with children?”, self-regulating heating/air con system options of the rooms; “can guests easily turn the heating down or open a window?”. All these factors will determine the warmth of the bedding required.
Daniel Fido, national sales manager for The Fine Bedding Company Hospitality Division.
“Ultimately, we’re all striving for guests to leave thinking ‘that overnight experience was out of this world’ or ‘that bedding is so much better than I have at home, it was so luxurious and helped me to achieve a fabulous night’s sleep.’ Better still, when guests comment on the quality and comfort of the bedding it generates a positive review that will encourage repeat custom and increased recommendations.”
As suppliers continue to evolve to offer hoteliers and guest house owners innovative bedding solutions that are practical and functional like the Four Seasons 3 in 1 duvet combo, guests will continue to experience highest levels of luxury which will in turn lead to greater guest sleep experience, increased propensity to return, recommendations as well as improved room rates and revenue.
*Travel and Leisure http://www.travelandleisure.com/articles/battle-of-the-beds