The humble blanket has a long history and, despite its continental battles with the duvet, the blanket is still around keeping us cosy and warm. When buying for personal use, blankets are just a matter of taste and how warm you want to be. The questions are simply does it match the bedspread or is it for the car, the dog or a new addition to the family? But when buying for a guest room in a hotel then personal taste is more hindrance than help in making your choice. This article takes a brief look at what to consider when buying blankets for hotel use, including what types are available and how to best store them so they're always ready for guests to use.
Types of Blanket
Blankets are generally made from either cotton or man-made fabrics. Cotton provides a feeling of comfort and quality but it is not as hard-wearing as polyester or nylon. There are also mixed-material blankets such as acrylic/polyester which are particularly durable, even after multiple washes. Blankets come in a variety of sizes, with single and double being the basics. It's important to remember to measure each bed for each blanket where they're to be used before you begin your buying.
Cellular blankets offer warmth within a lightweight fabric and can also be washed efficiently. The cells in the open weave of the material capture air and this helps insulate body warmth. These can also be purchased with flame retardant qualities from specialist suppliers - an important factor for the hotel buyer.
Fleece blankets have become increasingly popular in recent years, in part because they feel warm and soft to the touch. Some even see these as adult 'comfort' blankets. Usually made from polyester these blankets are best bought with an easy-care label, and anti-piling qualities, meaning they retain their smooth appearance.
Nylon blankets are very durable and particularly useful for those with allergies. These blankets tend to cost more than the others listed here, but their durability does provide value for money where their use is required in outdoor settings.
Cellular blankets are useful where there will be multiple washes on a regular basis. They retain their size and shape even after hot washing and can provide flexibility for hot summer weather. If bought from a reputable supplier, flame retardant cellular blankets will retain their safety qualities even after washing. Acrylic/polyester mix blankets can also be washed, but as always with man-made fibres the manufacturer's instructions should be closely followed before laundering.
For hotel purposes storage is an important factor, because blankets will always need to be available even if they are rarely used and yet they should be kept hygienic at all times. Specialist suppliers sell clear-polythene, zip-fastening bags for protecting blankets and linens, keeping them clean while they are in storage. An alternative would be vacuum seal bags that are now readily available and will remove all the air inside the blanket and bag reducing the space needed to store them. These are increasingly affordable, re-usable and require just a normal vacuum cleaner.
Either way, a clear, sealed storage bag will send the right message to your guests, that you care about their comfort and know how to maintain clean bedding, even when items are rarely used.