February 2010

Beds for hotels & guest Houses

It does not matter what grade, star or rating your property has, every establishment that rents out a room for the night is fundamentally selling a good nights sleep on a clean mattress. The decor, linens, service and expensive bathroom toiletries will count for nothing if your guests do not receive this basic component.

Whether you are a proprietor of a hotel, guest house or B & B, there is absolutely no reason to race to the bottom to find the cheapest bed possible. Sadly it seems a number of hotels do just that. It is acceptable practice to quantify the cost of your mattress to the ‘price per night principle’ instead which will help you realise why buying a quality mattress is not only good for your customer but great business sense too.

Origins Pocket Reflex 1000 on a Cream Chenille base

For example At a hotel with the most impeccable standards, they will usually allocate just £3 towards the cost of a mattress out of the room revenue taken for that night This means that they will have an annual budget of around £1000+ towards the cost of the mattress in theory. If their room occupancy is above 75% then they will be looking to change the mattress at around the six month time. With the principle being the newer the mattress the better.

In short, for the above average establishment, a cost of £2 per night will get you an extremely good quality mattress, looked after and replaced once a year will ensure your guests have a comfortable and clean sleeping environment. How many establishments do you know that make the claim – Our mattresses are replaced every 6 months and judging by this article in The Guardian it would make vast commercial sense if they did! One way to find out how good your hotel mattress rates is to pull back the covers and make a note of the model and details so you can research it online.

How often should you replace the mattress?

Your room occupancy will dictate the frequency of how often you change the mattress. The low average is once per year, taking in one busy season and a quiet season representing an average 75% occupancy rate.

It doesn’t beggar belief that when you stay in a hotel or B & B you get this irresistible urge to see what the mattress is like! The very last thing you want to see is any staining. Also, the other last thing you want to see is a plastic-coated mattress like they have in hospitals. Knowing this, it does make commercial sense that your mattress should be spotlessly clean and comfortable. We all sweat about each night. The ultimate aim for the hotelier is to keep the guests’ bodily fluids away from the actual mattress as much as you can whilst ensuring it is also comfortable.

All hotels should have at the very least a mattress protector of some sort preferably, the most absorbent. I also recommend that an additional soft layer of absorbent material such as a wool rich blanket is used beneath a mattress protector. This can act as a final vapour barrier.

Origins Pocket Reflex 1000 on a Cream Chenille base
Our Origins Reflex is the most popular model for guesthouses and spare bedrooms
Hotel beds should ideally be replaced once a year
Hotel beds should ideally be replaced once a year
We imagine there's plenty of hotels that don't change their beds frequently enough
We imagine there's plenty of hotels that don't change their beds frequently enough

What about fire regulations for commercial mattress use?

The Fire and Furniture (Fire) (Safety) Regulations only apply to furniture intended for private use in a dwelling.  Because the mattresses in question are destined for to be used in hotels/B&B/guesthouses, which are considered medium risk premises, higher levels of safety testing, than for domestic furniture, is required.

Due to this, simply complying with the above Regulations would not normally ensure that this standard is met.  As with furniture destined for private, domestic use, a mattress to be supplied to hotels/B&B/guesthouses must comply with BS 7177: 2008: Specification for resistance to ignition of mattresses, mattress pads, divans and bed bases:

BS EN597-1 (Smouldering Cigarette)
BS EN597 -2 (Match Test)

N.B. All mattresses sold on this site conform to this standard.

Furthermore, the mattresses for medium risk establishments must also comply with BS 6807 – methods of test for assessment of the ignitability of mattresses, upholstered divans, and upholstered bed bases with flaming types of primary and secondary sources of ignition, which is also part of BS 7177.

This Standard [BS 6807 also known as Crib 5 / Source 5]  exceeds the levels of ignition tests required by BS EN 597 – 1 and  BS EN 597 – 2 and should be read in conjunction with such.

How much do hotels spend on their mattresses?

Whilst quality hotels will proportion a budget per night for your mattress. It’s not a rule that’s universally followed. Would it surprise you to find out that we have stayed in some of the finest hotels to find they are still using cage sprung mattresses? Even those who do spend a little extra on their mattresses, but don’t follow the price per night formula, are likely to contract purchase on bulk entry-level mattresses. We’ve even heard suppliers telling us how one hotel chain picked the cheapest sub £100 mattress for their luxury kingsize rooms. Whilst there is a need to replace hotel beds far more frequently than a residential mattress there is no need to race to the bottom when it comes to purchasing mattresses for a hotel. After all your guests are paying for comfort and an enjoyable stay. It always surprises us why so many hotel and guest houses spend more on the decorations that the actual mattress! If you’ve been to a hotel and pulled back the covers to find a bag of springs why not let us know?


Feel free to contact us if you are looking for replacement mattresses for your business. We will be able to provide all alternative options such as base styles and mattress longevity ensuring you get the look you want at the right price. Our Origins 1500 mattress or Origins Reflex are both a great place to start for purposes of a guest house as they will tolerate a number of weights and is a great all-rounder.

It must be understood that all mattress components manufactured in the UK / Europe are subject to the highest FR (Fire Retardancy) tests. Many components exceed what is expected and you should not unduly worry about this aspect. However, FR regulations that apply to your premises should not be taken lightly.

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