Your guide to creating the very bed-st sleep environment
Perfecting your guest beds is not simply a case of a supportive mattress, a cosy duvet, or even lofty pillows, it’s actually a combination of all three, and so much more. From the headboard down to the bed base, every element plays a part in creating a bed that’s comfortable and inviting for your guests. So, what exactly does it take to dress the perfect bed?
1. Bed Frame
When you ensure a quality foundation, it makes it far easier to perfect all of the other elements that contribute to a comfy and attractive bed. Before you start weighing up colour schemes and thread counts, start with the basic bed frame.
Your first consideration should be how much space you have to play with, and how you can use this space to its utmost potential to optimise potential bookings. Single beds can be pushed together, for example, to create a super king bed. Underneath the bed, you might prefer to opt for under-bed storage for yourself or your guests to utilise. Perhaps you want to ensure your bed base coordinates with your headboard, linen and most importantly, your room.
Bed frames come in all shapes, sizes, colours and materials, so you should aim to find a happy medium between practicality and a fashionable finish.
Choosing the right mattress for commercial use rather than domestic means there are a number of other factors to consider when it comes to extra support and mattress longevity. Our Coverdale, Deepdale and Swaledale mattresses, for example, conform to BS7177 Ignition source 5 for medium contract use while offering a reinforced wire edge and butterfly shaped sidewall springs to ensure a longer life, helping to combat the general wear and tear often seen as a result of guests sitting on the edge of beds. If opting for two single beds to double up as a super king bed, you can use the quick link belt to effortlessly clip the beds together and hold them in place for extra security.
3. Mattress Protector
As mattresses can be a large investment, it’s important to ensure you take precautions to extend the life of the mattress for as long as possible. Whether protecting from stains, liquids or even bed bugs, mattress protectors are a sure-fire way to keep your mattresses looking like new while keeping them hygienic, too.
To protect your beds from pesky bed bugs that hide in guest’s luggage, we recommend the BugLock Plus from Protect-A-Bed. Not only is it 100% bug proof, the tightly woven fabric ensures it is also entirely waterproof.
4. Mattress Topper
Mattresses have a typical lifespan of approximately 7-10 years, and during these years repeated use can decrease the overall comfort the mattress provides, so a topper is essential for adding an extra layer of softness while enhancing your original mattress. Depending on the thickness of your topper, when combined with the depth of your mattress, you may need to invest in a slightly deeper mattress protector and fitted sheet to keep everything contained and neat.
A good pillow is undoubtedly the key to a great night’s sleep, but with so many options out there, it’s difficult to know where to start. From natural or synthetic to soft, medium or firm fills, everyone has different preferences, but you can take steps to ensure every guest is pleased with the options you provide.
Natural pillows are often synonymous with luxury, though synthetic pillows can be just as good with the added benefit of being entirely non-allergenic. Assessing your price range is a great place to start, as the more you invest into good quality bedding, the longer the products typically last. Our dùsal duck feather and down hotel pillows are a firm favourite amongst hoteliers due to the element of luxury they add, however our Wash and Bounce pillow has remained a bestseller since it first launch due to the unique fibre fill that keeps the pillow fluffy wash after wash.
The safest choice is to offer a firm pillow at the base and a soft on top to cover all bases, though if you really want to optimise the guest experience, try offering an exclusive ‘pillow menu’ to your guests, allowing you to both personalise the process as well as guarantee your guests have a pillow they will enjoy.
TOP TIP: Try a selection of pillows out for yourself to distinguish which you prefer before committing to the pillows you offer your guests.
6. Pillow Protector
Pillow protectors are a great way to keep stains and fluids from infiltrating the pillow, increasing the lifetime of your pillows tenfold. Pillow protectors allow you to offer an extra hygienic element to your guest beds, and are far easier, and cheaper, to replenish than pillows.
7. Flat or Fitted Sheet
Flat and fitted sheets are often added to the bed for an extra level of warmth, comfort or hygiene. Flat sheets are typically found beneath the duvet, which are then tucked under the mattress, while fitted sheets have an elasticated edging to effortlessly wrap around mattresses for an extra level of protection.
8. Oxford Pillowcase
Oxford pillowcases traditionally have a border or frill – usually found in higher end hotels – as they help to add a decorative finish when dressing the bed. More often than not, Oxford pillowcases are accompanied by a housewife pillowcase on the pillow underneath.
9. Housewife Pillowcase
Housewife pillowcases are the most common, no-fuss pillowcase style, as the pillow tends to neatly fit inside the casing with no edging, providing a clean finish. Choosing between Oxford and housewife pillowcases is entirely up to personal preference, so consider the desired look you want to achieve in your rooms and use this vision to decide which style will suit your beds best.
Like mattresses and pillows, duvets are largely responsible for your guests’ overall comfort, making it an essential aspect to get right.
There are three main things to consider when choosing the right duvet to suit your business, your guests and your budget.
Let’s start with size. If, as aforementioned, you opt for a quick link mattress, you can easily accommodate this with a zip and link duvet, giving you the ability to effortlessly alternate between two single duvets and a super king. Not only does this combat the issue of storing the duvets when not in use, it also allows you to optimise your booking potential without any extra cost. You should also decide how you want the duvet to fit on the bed, and whether a size larger is needed to create that desired ‘overhang’.
Your second consideration should be filling. Like pillows, you must consider the level of quality your guests expect, while considering your budget and the longevity of the duvets you choose. For the ultimate in luxury, goose feather and down hotel duvets offer superior warmth, lightness and exceptional loft. For a more affordable choice while maintaining that highly sought natural filling, the dùsal duck feather and down duvets are a perfect choice. On the other hand, if you prefer something synthetic to tick those nonallergenic boxes, our microfibre and hollowfibre duvets are popular bestsellers amongst hoteliers and housekeepers alike.
Last but not least is the tog-rating, an often underestimated but essential factor that can leave your guests too hot, too cold, or just right. Tog ratings refer to the thermal rating of a duvet and are often associated with the appropriate season they might be used for. This might mean, therefore, that different tog duvets are required in varying seasons to keep your guests happy. Rather than investing in separate duvets, all seasons duvets consist of a 4.5 tog and a 9 tog duvet, which can be used together or individually, to provide different levels of warmth. Simply clip the two duvets together to create a 13.5 tog winter duvet, or store away the duvet you don’t need to use.
11. Duvet Protector
Duvets can be a big investment, and one that you are unlikely to wash anywhere near as frequently as other elements of your guest bed, so ensure you protect the duvet with a duvet protector to combat tea and coffee stains, grime or soiling. The protector serves as a thin, stain-resistant layer that you can easily be washed or replaced, while keeping your duvet clean and hygienic.
12. Duvet Cover
Duvet covers, in practical terms, are used as an outer sheet on the duvet to keep it clean and hygienic for longer. Dissimilar to a duvet protector, bed linen can also be used for a decorative purpose too, with the colour, print or pattern on the duvet cover and pillowcases often coordinating with the rest of the room.
In a B&B, hotel or self-catering property, most opt for a crisp white linen with a higher thread count as this is often best received by guests. It gives the impression of cleanliness and minimalism, resulting in a more professional feel. Depending on your interior, coloured, patterned or print may be a great design choice for your accommodation, helping your rooms to stand out from traditionally muted décor.
When choosing your bed linen, thread counts and fabric choices can be just as important as how the linen looks, so be sure to have a read of our bed linen guide so you know exactly what to look for.
Just like the bed linen you choose, cushions are another great way to tie into your room’s décor. Rather than replacing your entire linen cupboard, however, cushions are a brilliant cost-effective way of bringing a completely new look to your bedrooms.
If you want a pop of colour, we’d recommend the Ashley range in turquoise, lime or berry to stand out against traditional white linen. If you prefer a subtle print, the Aviemore collection is ideal for tying into more muted décor, adding a cosy farmhouse feel. Alternatively, Verona cushions offer a perfect blend of faux suede texture and neutral, on-trend tones.
Runners, like cushions, are an easy and affordable way to add some colour to your guest rooms. Runners are usually styled as a strip of colour or patterned material to make a bed look more attractive. Not only are they a great way to tie into your décor, they also have a practical purpose, too. As well as offering an extra layer of warmth for your guest, the material can also be used as a protectant against any tea or coffee stains, or dirt from luggage and cases being brought on to the bed linen. You can view our full range of runners, here.
Headboards are one of the main features of a bed that can also serve as a statement piece. Available in a range of colours, materials, patterns and sizes, headboards can be used to tie into your décor or add a focus point when finishing off your guest beds.
16. Bed Base Wrap
An alternative to traditional valances, bed base wraps are a multifunctional but not essential addition to your guest rooms. Ideal for covering up unsightly bed bases, or simply tying into the room’s colour scheme or soft furnishings, bed base wraps are similar to fitted sheets in that they have an elasticated edging that fits effortlessly around your bed bases.
Bed divans tend to be around 14 inches deep, so it’s important to opt for a bed base wrap around 15 inches for a snug, tidy fit. In some cases, however, divan bases can be slightly deeper so ensure you choose a bed base wrap that will accommodate this.