how many towels, etc.?

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So, how many bath towels, hand towels, washcloths, bath mats, and anything else like that in the bathroom do you have? I mean in total, not in the bathroom at a given time (I've read opinions on that on here already). We will have rooms with King beds and rooms with two twins, if that matters.

I'm asking because we're working on a startup budget for the inn we're planning to open next year. We have price lists for items we'll need to purchase, but don't always know how units of each we'll need.

Thanks!!

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Thanks for all the advice! Does anyone have spare pillows not kept in the room in case of an accident?

Generic's picture
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02/24/2011

More than a few... I keep many of them because people might need different pillows....

Stomach sleepers often prefer a pillow that is relatively flat. Maybe 3 to 4 cm in height. Back sleepers often prefer a medium pillow. Side sleepers often need thicker pillows or a second pillow. It is a good idea to keep extra pillows in the room or at least let guests know. There are some guests who prefer pillows with fluffy fill.... The pillow may sink in the middle more than usual.

I try to keep my guests from sleeping on the sham pillows. I do this by making it uncomfortably thick and hard and for this I often use two old and worn out pillows.

I wash my pillows and dry them using a ball in the dryer to fluff the fill.

Also, you will want to use a pillow case, preferably something quilted to cover the pillow and absorb sweat. It can easily be changed and washed and will help keep the pillow longer because it keeps the sweat from getting to the fill. The sweat is often what makes the pillows go flat, sooner.

The standard way of telling if a pillow needs to be washed and/or replaced is by folding it in two. If it doesn't come back to normal within a few seconds, it definitely needs to be washed. If it doesn't come back after being washed and dried, it's time to replace.

Also, if you decide to use feather or down pillows, have some hypo-allergetic pillows around, since there are people who are allergic to feather/down. 

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gillumhouse's picture
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I have 3 or 4 pillows in my storage room in case I get someone allergic to feathers. All the extra pillows are fiberfill. 2 rooms have feathers/down and one room is "feather/down-free.

Generic's picture
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We normally give each guest three towels, a facecloth, a hand towel and a bath towel. There is a mat for the shower and a hand towel hanging in the bathroom. So for two guests there are 7 towels and a bath mat.

Women sometimes request an extra towel for their hair. And then there was the guy who wanted 4 extra because he had OCD and kept on needing to shower.

Country Girl's picture
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Not enough towels is my BIGGEST pet peeve! I would recommend a minimum of 2 hand towels, 2 washcloths, and 2 bath towels per per person in the bathroom. I have 3 sets of sheets for each bed and extra pillowcases and lots of extra pillow covers. I also keep extra blankets on hand for emergencies.

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gillumhouse's picture
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Thank you for the correction. Yes, I do have 2 towels per guest, plus 1 cloth each and a hand towel each hanging AND I have a "boatload" of extra towels/cloths, etc in a basket in the shared bath and on a shelf in the "pass-through" from room to bathroom in the ensuite (it used to be the closet - took wall out and now closet on each side of the passage.).

Joey Camb's picture
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I would go with the same bedlinen for all cos you can guarantee that if there is one set you need then that will be in the wash! Im not a believer in making life hard for yourself trying to match up sheet sets when a toilet had expoloded you've got a bunch of check ins and 100 other things to do is one less thing you can do with out!

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China, my suggestion is to have the same size beds so you won't need as many sets of linens/sheets, then if something happens you can always move them around. What is your demographic? I have a good friend who is in China currently, and travels around via 24 hours on train and into bordering countries.  There are a lot of Irish and Aussies he works with there. 

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So you're saying not to have Kings and twins? Our demographic is backpacking travellers (Europeans & Aussies) who usually travel in pairs (like two guy friends) and will probably want two twins in their room, as well as expats (large expat population 1.5hr from here in a big city, often complain there's nowhere in the countryside to retreat to -- that'll be us!!) who tend to be either a married couple (what we're thinking the King for) or families with a few young children. We'll have 12-14 rooms total though, and hired housekeeping help.

Joey Camb's picture
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What we do but they don't seem to have this in the USA but you may have it where you are is Zip and Link beds

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/6FT-SUPER-KING-SIZE-ZIP-LINK-DIVAN-BED-ZIP-AND-LINK-/290627958484?pt=Beds_Mattresses&hash=item43aac6b6d4

we have 4 which are the 5 foot accross version which unzips into 2 single 2'6 beds for extra versatility you can also get them in super king which is 6 foot accross with becomming a 3 foot single beds. we use a thick feather mattress topper and people really like the beds. Our room 10 has a double bed and single bed and room 11 is a zip and link double with a single sofa bed. this may be a solution however then you need extra duvets and covers as you need double and single ones.

birdwatcher's picture
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make ALL your linen and towels either WHITE or CREAM- all should be one color and one make-don't make the mistake of getting different color or texture towels or different sheets for different rooms-keep them white or cream.

Also-duvets are a pain, i would stick with beadspreads of quilts-thats just me though...

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09/20/2011

Thanks for the tips on colors. I've never actually even seen anything but duvets where we are... I can quilt but very slowly!

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And (is it better to start a new thread on this forum or keep asking questions here?)... what about bedroom linens? I've searched a lot here and read that it's typical to have 3 sets of sheets per bed (just like some of you mentioned here). What about pillowcases?

It's typical here for a King bed to have two pillows, a bottom sheet (not usually fitted but we'll probably go with fitted anyway), and a duvet in a duvet cover. We probably want to add a flat sheet on the bed. The room usually has two additional pillows and a blanket or two in a cabinet or closet. Does that sound about right? So how many TOTAL do you need (pillowcases, duvet covers... and do you have spare pillows, duvets, or blankets?) if that's how many you have in the room at a time?

Thanks again!!!

gillumhouse's picture
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I try to have 2 EXTRA sets of pillowcases per set of sheets. I iron pillowcases (NOT SHEETS). If I have not made an appointment with the dreaded ironing board AND if guests have used the extra pillows  there are more pillowcases used and in need of ironing and needing new pillowcases put on the extra pillows. (I have gone months without guests using the extra pillows and then will have a run where every guest uses them. I have 2 extra pillows in the dressers in each guestroom.) I iind of look at pillowcases like money - you never have too much.

Madeleine's picture
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09/29/2011

Usually it's better to ask separate questions in separate threads just so you can find the answers again later on!

We buy our sheets in sets- one flat sheet, one fitted sheet, 2 pillowcases. Then I buy an extra set of pillowcases for each sheet set. Sometimes it is necessary to change out pillowcases before I would change the sheets for guests staying multiple nights.

We also have duvets, but then have a blanket and a quilt with that. In the summer the duvet goes into storage and it's just the quilt & blanket on top.

Right now I have about 20 sets for 7 queen beds. I have 4 sets for the king bed and 9 sets for 2 twin beds (we used to have more twin beds).

I have 4 extra blankets. 16 extra pillow covers (that way I can change them out without having to wait for the old ones to go thru the wash).

The way I do the extra wash is to pick a time where there are not a lot of incoming guests and I wash the quilts. Next day I do as many of the blankets as there were beds used, following day the others and so on.

I also have backups for the mattress pads.

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09/20/2011

Thanks! Making sure I understand on the pillowcases, how many pillows do you have in each room?

Madeleine's picture
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09/29/2011

chinaruralinn wrote:

Thanks! Making sure I understand on the pillowcases, how many pillows do you have in each room?

4 pillows for each bed. Some beds also have the decorative pillows in shams. (2 pillows for the twin beds)

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09/20/2011

Thanks for all the tips! To answer some of the questions re: our specific scenario, we expect primarily western guests, mostly European and Australian (I'm American so having to research those expectations/preferences). We have a hot rainy season and a cold dry season, so towels will line-dry in 1-1.5 days almost all of the year (when they won't is our very coldest time of year when we'll probably close). Thanks for the tips on extra washcloths... I don't wear makeup myself and wouldn't have thought about that kind of staining!

Innkeep's picture
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06/04/2008

How fascinating.  Do you think you will have primarily Chinese or western guests?  Some of our guests seem to need a new towel every day, some are happy with hanging the towel up and using it for several days.  It might also matter how humid your area is--Will a towel dry overnight?  If not, you may need to consider how often you will be able to launder towels because you then would need to consider fresh towels every day.  As Gillum says, a rule of thumb especially for bedsheets is one set in the room, one in the laundry and one on the shelf. 

I have 4 towels, 3 hand towels, 6 washcloths and one bathmat in each 2 person room.  It gives guests a feeling that they'll never run out of anything.  Honestly, I only keep about half that many of each on the shelf and end up doing laundry pretty much every day when all the rooms are in use.

Also, there are pros and cons to either all white towels or colored towels, so think about which you prefer.  Some acne products will bleach the color out of towels, and even though I provide inexpensive washcloths that are supposed to be used for makeup removal I can't tell you the hours I've spent removing makeup from my good white washcloths, hand towels and even bath towels.  You should order lots of washcloths especially if they are less expensive with a larger order, because they get stained more often, and consider less expensive washcloths so you can replace them when they are stained beyond repair.

Welcome to the forum.  Try to read as many of the old topics as you have time for.  Please continue to ask questions, and let us know how your adventure continues.

Madeleine's picture
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09/29/2011

In total? I buy towels in bulk- 36-48 bath towels at a time. Ditto the hand towels. Twice that for washcloths. Half that for bathmats. That's for 7 rooms. Your mileage may vary. What you have to consider is how often during a stay you will change out the towels, how long it will take to turn the dirty towels over in the wash, how humid it is where you are (affects drying time and may mean more frequent changeovers) and, what is expected by the guests you will have.

gillumhouse's picture
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05/22/2008

Figure a mimimum of 2 sets of towels (bath, hand, cloth) x 3 per room and x 4 is better. I figured 1 set in room, 1 in laundry, and 1 on the shelf for just in case. The 4th sets would be in case of "I need more towels!" guests or just extra towels in the bathrooms.. And remember that set per room is 2 of each item.

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