Do you own a home, a bed and breakfast or any facility that offers housing services? If so then you have probably encountered the 'cleaning demon' a few times.
Now let us be clear, cleaning is not fun - most of the time. You can work up the determination to embark on some serious cleaning only for you to open the front door, take one look at the mess and find that your courage has dissipated like smoke. I have lost count of how many times that has happened to me.
Another disturbing issue that has defeated many house owners/cleaners is that they can spend the whole day trying to make the house sparkle. And they come dusk; you are greeted with only a very dull tidiness at best.
The truth is that cleaning is a science and with all the cleaning agencies out there, no matter the cleaning tips,there is only one group of people I can think of who know everything there is to know about cleaning.
Hotel maids. Some of us have had them clean our hotel rooms so many times that we have become oblivious to their presence. All we know is that the room always sparkles after they leave.
Well here are a few of their secrets that help them bring that sparkle into any room. Some of them are so common sense; it will make you feel dull.
1. Take out the clutter first
I am no longer guilty of this but when I think about it in retrospect; we all look silly when we try to clean around clutter. I cannot seem to figure out if it is laziness or contempt for cleaning - or both.
Whenever an artist wants to draw, he starts with a blank canvas, right?
Same goes for cleaning. Hotel maids always make sure they remove the pillows, linens, towels and trash. They also clear all counters and surfaces. Doing this will clear all potential obstacles to the cleaning process, give you a much better view of the room and better ideas on how to go about the cleaning.
2. Get all the dust on the floor
It is good practice to get as much dust as you can off the drapes and onto the floor first before you vacuum. You would just be undoing all your hard work if you clean first and dust later. Do this by whacking the drapes with a hand towel; it is heavy enough to get the job done and light enough not to wear your arm out from so much whacking.
3. Use microfiber clothes to clean surfaces
Micro fiber is the ideal material to use when cleaning. If you do not have a microfiber, then use a cloth that is 100% cotton such as an old pillow case or a t-shirt. If this is the option available to you, make sure that you dampen it slightly.
If it's not cotton or microfiber, do not bother using it; no cloth besides these two will clean dust properly.
4. Employ the 'sheet tag science'
Have you ever finished making your bed only to find out that you tucked the long end in on the short side of the mattress? No worries, it happens to the best of us.
Here's a tip to help you. Sheets come with tags and tags always go on the bottom. Sheets for king size mattresses usually have their tags on the left while the tags are on the right for queen size sheets.
It is also advisable to mark the inside seams of the sheets denote which is left and right using a fabric marker.
5. Give the cleaning products time to work their magic
The power of cleaning products is in their 'after effect'. Spraying and cleaning immediately is a futile activity. Hotel maids know to give the cleaning products a few minutes after spraying to work their magic on the surfaces before cleaning.
They spray the bathtub, toilet bowl, wash hand bowl and the shower walls and then go about cleaning other parts of the bathroom such as the windows, cabinets and the mirrors. This will give sufficient minutes for the cleaning products to work.
Repeat this process in your own bathtub and watch your bathroom shine.
6. Invoke the power of the toothbrush
Yes, toothbrush. And this has got nothing to do with your teeth. You can mop and scrub and wipe all you want. The fact is that there are parts of your bathroom that mops and cleaning towels cannot get to.
That is where the toothbrushes come in handy; they can get to all those seemingly unreachable nooks such as the bottom screws of the toilet etc.
7. Vacuum the most used areas twice
We all have different systems for vacuuming the floor of our houses. Some of us start in the center and move to the edges, others start from the edges and work their way to the center. And then the gifted few among us start anywhere and work around the room in a random, extremely non-systematic manner.
None of this is as effective as the system employed by hotel maids. They start from the parts of the floor most used - the high traffic areas if you wish to call them that. They then work their way into the room still prioritizing the high traffic areas and then work out of the room. This way they vacuum the most walked on spots twice.
Six Senses Ninh Van Bay, Nha Trang, Vietnam
The Rock Pool Villas
Perched on a private island near Vietnam's Nha Trang, the Ninh Van Bay
's Rock Pool Villa
boasts the best breezy open-bathing experience. Scattered among rock formations, the villas come with plunge pools, as well as luxurious open bathrooms with handmade wooden bathtubs and steam showers looking straight down on the East Vietnam Sea.
Lion Sands Resort, South Africa
Nestled among the treetops, amid acres of African bush and roaming wildlife, sits Kingston Treehouse
— the jewel in the crown at the Lion Sands Resort
in South Africa's Sabi Sand Game Reserve. Adjacent to the outdoor bedroom is a stylish, modern glass-walled bathroom space with spectacular panoramic views. You might even spot a giraffe while you're lathering up.
Four Seasons Hotel George V, Paris
Four Seasons Hotels
A haven of marble, glass and gold, the bathroom in the George V Penthouse
at the Four Seasons Hotel, Paris, is the epitome of opulence and glamour. Take a relaxing soak in the infinity bath (fitted with jets and underwater lights), enveloped in the heady scent of fresh flowers, arranged by world-famous florist Jeff Leatham.
Jade Mountain Resort, St. Lucia
No, this isn’t a still from a Sean Connery-era James Bond movie: it’s Jade Mountain
, a real-life hotel-resort on St. Lucia’s southwestern Caribbean coastline. Soak in your chromatherapy whirlpool bath while enjoying the breathtaking panoramic views of the Caribbean Sea and Piton mountains – or enjoy an all-singing, all-dancing ‘shower tower’ (read: rain shower with six body sprays and a separate hand shower).
The Shangri-La Hotel, London
The Shangri-La Hotel
Soak in the bath while you soak up the spectacular London cityscape from the ultimate vantage point: hundreds of feet above the snaking Thames. The Shard’s Shangri-La Hotel
(which boasts the highest hotel room in Western Europe) offers five luxury suites with floor to ceiling windows, steam showers, Jacuzzi baths, and the pièce de résistance – heated loo seats.
Eden Rock, St. Barths
Make like rock royalty in the Freddie Mercury Suite bathroom at Eden Rock St Barths
' Villa Rock Star. Check out the stunning curves, shimmering tiles and huge, mid-century style leather armchair. One word: 'Barbarella'.
Madulkelle Tea And Eco Lodge Spa, Sri Lanka
If you've ever fancied a long soak amongst the clouds, this could be the bathroom for you. The outdoor bath at the Madulkelle Tea and Eco Lodge Spa
looks out the Knuckles Mountain Range, and is set at over 1000m above sea level. The resort offers a luxury camping experience, set within rolling green tea fields. The bath is set within an infinity lily pond, and with the sounds of a nearby Hindu temple rolling over the hills, relaxation is taken to a new level - quite literally. An idyllic retreat for honeymooning couples and grown-up backpackers
Mondrian South Beach Hotel, Miami
Mondrian South Beach
If you love showers, you will love the bathrooms at the Mondrian South Beach
. Think sparkling waters falling from crystal chandelier showerheads against a magical mosaic backdrop depicting a deep blue sky and ethereal clouds. The iconic hotel has been designed to resemble Sleeping Beauty's castle emerging from the sea — and the bathrooms certainly live up to the fairy tale experience.
Southern Ocean Lodge, Kangaroo Island, Australia
Southern Ocean Lodge
Bathroom experiences don’t get much more tranquil than this. South Ocean Lodge sits on a secluded cliff overlooking a rugged stretch of coast on South Australia’s Kangaroo Island. The bathroom in its luxurious Osprey Pavilion
features heated limestone floors, a deluxe rainshower, and a sculpted granite bathtub for soaking up with the wild and panoramic views through its floor-to-ceiling window.
Laamu Lagoon Beach Villas, The Maldives
Showering, with the breeze rushing through the leaves, in the open-air branch-encircled shower at Laamu
's Lagoon Beach Villas , is like taking a shower under a tropical waterfall but in the privacy of your own bathroom.
Pennyhill Park Hotel & Spa, Surrey
If your idea of luxury is allowing state-of-the-art technology to do all of the work for you, you will not be disappointed with the futuristic bathroom experiences on offer at the Pennyhill Park
Hotel & Spa. Boasting "the only horizontal shower in the UK", Soundwave Massaging Technology and Regenerative Technology, they take their relaxation seriously.
Ritz Carlton Hong Kong
Unapologetically ostentatious, the Ritz Carlton Suite at the Ritz Carlton Hong Kong
ticks all the luxury boxes: Oversized jaccuzi, 'rainforest' shower, marble surrounds, huge windows, more lights than Balckpool illuminations - and perhaps the best cityscape view you're ever likely to clap eyes on.
The Maritime Hotel, New York
The Maritime Hotel
The penthouse floor of New York's nautical themed Maritime Hotel
overlooks the High Line and Hudson River - and boasts huge marble bathrooms. But it's the outdoor terrace shower with its oversized porthole peeping out across the city that makes this a bathroom experience to remember. Achingly cool.
Singita Sweni Lodge, South Africa
Singita Sweni Lodge
All glass and wood, the Singita Sweni Lodge
at South Africa's Kruger National Park is a designer treehouse that cleverly integrates your bathroom experience with the landscape. Bathe, floating above the Sweni River - or take a refreshing and spectacular shower outdoors.
Hotel Tragara, Capri, Italy
Another bath, another jaw-dropping view of crystal blue waters and staggering rock formations. This one is The Art Suite at Capri's Punta Tragara Hotel
. This one is of the striking Faraglioni rocks off the Italian island of Capri. The beautifully designed modern standalone bath provides a stylish contrast to the more traditional, classic Italian furnishings.