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Cleaning help and hacks from hotel housekeepers By: Katie Jackson

If there was a world record for number of rooms cleaned in a lifetime, there’s no doubt a hotel housekeeper would hold the title.
 
They can turn over rooms faster than most people can figure out where their vacuum attachments go and find an outlet.
 
Heavy duty spring cleaning may still be a few weeks away, but here are some everyday housekeeping tip from the folks who make careers out of deep cleaning on a daily basis.
 
1. Folding the Toilet Paper Shows You Care
 
Does it really matter how your bathroom toilet tissue looks? According to hotel cleaners, yes. “First, it’s two basic folds,” demonstrates Maricres Gapol, a room attendant at Hotel Zeppelin in San Francisco. “Fold the right corner to the left side, making a left pointing triangle. Next, take the left point and fold the triangle in half toward the right side. It gives you a perfect point which allows for easy pulling action.” Folding toilet paper in your guest room is one of the cheapest and most time-effective ways to show your company you take care of even the smallest details to make them feel welcome.
 
 
2. Out of Sight is Peace of Mind
 
Even if they’re only staying one night, Gapol advises guests to unpack and utilize the dressers and closets in Hotel Zeppelin’s guest rooms. “It will keep you from tossing things around and feeling like you’re living out of your luggage.”
 
Plus, if you keep surfaces clear, they’re much easier to clean regularly. “Get in the habit of editing your stuff...i.e. simplify,” she notes. “It’s something small you can do every day to prevent major messes in the future. The best cleaning advice I ever received was cleaning a little each day keeps the mess away.”
 
 
3. There is a Method to the Madness
 
Hotel Zeppelin’s housekeepers work in a systematic fashion. They start at the door and work their way around the room in a clockwise manner. “We start with the shower and tub area to let the cleaning projects soak in and do their jobs. Then all we have to do is come back when we’ve finished the rest of the room and wipe to be done,” says Gapol. Cleaning in one direction makes it harder to skip something-- and it allows you to devote more energy into doing the actual task as opposed to trying to determine which task to tackle next.
 
 
4. It Really is Possible to Fold Fitted Sheets
 
For Gapol and her team, folding fitted sheets is all about creating pockets by placing corners in their opposite corners. If you need visuals, she recommends watching Martha Stewart’s how-to video. On the other hand, Hotel Zetta, another San Francisco boutique property, doesn’t even bother with fitted sheets. “We don’t use fitted sheets,” dishes Maria Alfaro, a room attendant who admits they’re still a bit of a mystery to her. Regular sheets work just as well for the bottom as they do for the top, and you don’t have to worry about struggling to fold them wrinkle-free.
 
 
5. Vacuuming is Like Seeing a Shrink
 
“Vacuuming is the most cathartic thing I do,” admits Gapol, who finds the whole experience soothing. It’s critical, she says, to vacuum in both directions to pick up dirt hidden on both sides of carpet fibers. “Also, who doesn’t love to see those lines in the carpet that signal you’re done. For someone who is OCD, it’s like heaven!” Note, never vacuum until after you dust. You’d be surprised at the number of particles that transfer from your rag and feather duster onto the floor.