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How to Make Your Rooms and Suites Shine

sparkling clean

Taking your guest rooms from “clean” to “sparkling clean” can pay off big in guest satisfaction.

Today’s hotel guests have higher expectations than ever, and room cleanliness – or their perception of it – can make or break a stay. Guests who may not have focused on cleanliness before the pandemic may now be giving their room the “white glove test” and whipping out a Clorox wipe to disinfect the remote control.

“Operating standards for safety, security, and cleanliness will be subject to new, elevated expectations,” writes Tim Pelletier, chief technology officer of hospitality for Amadeus Hospitality. “First and foremost there will be a singular segment that blurs the lines between travelers, and that’s ‘Generation Clean.’”

So are you appealing to this “new generation” of traveler? Your hotel rooms may be perfectly clean, but little issues like scuffs on the walls or dust on a lamp shade can create the appearance of a less-than-sparkling room or suite. Here are 7 hotel room cleaning tips to cater to “Generation Clean” and take your rooms to the next level of cleanliness:

  1. Let the fresh air in. Airing out hotel rooms while cleaning is important not only from a health and safety perspective but also for chasing away stale smells from a previous stay. Have your housekeepers open the windows or use fans or the HVAC for proper ventilation while cleaning a room.
  2. Spiff up nicks and smudges. Scratches on baseboards, scuffs on walls and snags or stains on carpets can make a perfectly clean room seem old, tired – and even dirty. Taking the time to note these issues and repair them can spiff up a room until it’s time to renovate. You can easily fill in and touch up baseboards with wood filler and paint or a marker. And you can use a Magic Eraser to make wall smudges and stubborn countertop stains disappear.
  3. Highlight your cleanliness. Put up prominent signage, along with using your app and website, to let guests know what extra steps you’re taking to clean and disinfect their rooms. The more specific you can be, the better. For example, Clayton Hotels lists and diagrams all 16 high-touch surfaces they disinfect between guests. (That could definitely put a remote-disinfecting guest at ease.)
  4. Track down hidden dust. There is nothing like a layer of dust on top of, say, a picture frame or a lamp shade to give guests the impression that a room wasn’t thoroughly cleaned. Use a vacuum attachment to remove dust on baseboards, glass light shades and other surfaces that tend to be dust magnets. After cleaning, run a dryer sheet over these surfaces to prevent them from drawing more dust.
  5. Disinfect (and deep clean) upholstery. To freshen and disinfect soft couches and chairs between guests, use a hydrogen peroxide cleaning and disinfecting spray suitable for upholstery. Also vacuum these items, including the crevices. Also schedule regular steam cleanings for guest room furniture. Many hotels don’t: Inside Edition recently hired a professional furniture cleaner to check upscale hotels in the New York area. He found crumbs, dirt and odors. “The smell is just horrific,” he said of one couch.
  6. Hunt down items left behind. Create a system for looking under furniture and in spaces between furniture and walls to find stray items from previous guests. The Inside Edition investigation found a dirty slipper, a cup and an inflatable toy in one recently cleaned upscale hotel room.
  7. Make it smell good. Avoid using aerosol cleaning products that have a strong “cleaning product” smell. Ironically, the smell of cleaning products can make a room seem less clean. And consider using hypoallergenic ambient scent in guest rooms. One recent hospitality study showed guests who checked into scented rooms were happier overall.

When it comes to making a great impression on guests, a renewed focus on making your guest rooms squeaky clean can pay off big in guest satisfaction, peace of mind and stellar reviews.