With spring finally arriving, it’s time to think about getting ready for guests and for giving bedrooms a thorough airing and sprucing up. If anyone knows a thing or two about quick yet efficient cleaning, then it’s a hotel maid. They have lots of practice and simple tips. So we asked an old family friend, Emma, who worked for years at the Royal Clarence, Exeter (now sadly lamented) what her top ten cleaning trade secrets were.
- Clear the clutter first
It may sound basic but it is important to clear rooms of clutter first. Tidy up and remove all rubbish, trays, dirty linen. That way there is a clear area ready to be cleaned rather being tempted to just clean around items or put them back on damp surfaces to leave a ring. Move in a logical fashion, remembering that dust falls, start at the top (including lights and lightbulbs)
- Clean in order
Always dust first, then vacuum and finally mop. The last thing you want is dust and hair plastered on a wet floor, as it is difficult to remove. When its time to mop start in the far corner and work your way to the door.
- Don’t forget the curtains
It’s very easy to focus on the hard furniture and floors but the backs of chairs can get just as dusty so use special attachments to reach all nooks and crannies. If not to hand then an old towel will get into the corners. Dust and vacuum upholstery, remembering upholstered headboards as well. Also if there are curtains or blinds remember to do these too.
- Vacuum the opposite way
We were probably taught to vacuum out from the far corner but a great tip from the maids is vacuum into the room over the ‘high-traffic’ area and then out. This means the most walked on spot gets done twice.
- Bathroom last
Always do the bedroom first and then the on-suite or bathroom last. This then minimises any bacterial transfer.
- Cleaner in the pantry
You don’t need mountains of different, expensive cleaners. White Vinegar is amazingly effective and can be decanted into a cheap spray bottle. Mix 1 part vinegar with 3 parts water and you have a cost-effective glass and surface cleaner. Do use a good cleaning cloth, one that picks up dirty rather than spreading it around. Slightly dampening it will make it even more effective. It can also be useful to colour code cloths and have one colour for bathroom, a different one for the kitchen etc.
- The essential toothbrush
You certainly don’t need to clean everything with a fine tooth-comb but a tooth brush is really useful for getting into tiny cracks in the bathroom and around screws and fittings.
- Be organized
Hotel maids always have a trolley with everything they might need. Whilst that may not be practical you can find caddies that will hold all your basic kit, which is much easier than running backwards and forwards for the glass cleaner or a new cloth.
Don’t underestimate the power of a bit of fresh air. Just opening the windows will get rid of smells and freshen the room almost instantly.
- Look after equipment
Remember that filters need cleaning/changing on vacuum cleaners and brushes cleared. Irons too need cleaning out regularly and should be emptied of water after each use to prevent rusting and scale build up which if left unchecked will eventually spew out onto your clean clothes.
Receive 20% off your next online order when you sign up to our newsletter for competitions, events and information