What is hotel linen?
Author: Kellie Date Posted:9 May 2019
Is hotel linen different to regular linen? What threadcount is hotel linen? What is a percale weave?
1) Is hotel linen different to regular linen?
Yes, hotel linen is constructed to withstand the rigours of commercial laundries. Generally hotel linen gets better with age, whereas retail linen gets worse with age. In fact, each week we take phone calls from customers who have had Actil sheets for decades, and they finally need replacing.
2) What threadcount is hotel linen?
Simply, threadcount is the total number of threads per square inch of fabric, and it's not the best indicator of sheet quality.
For example, sheets constructed using 1ply quality thread can have a thread count between 120 to a maximum of 400.
Sheets with a threadcount higher than 400 have twisted two or more lower quality threads around itself, creating a multiply thread.
Hence, the threadcount might be 400, but as each thread is made up of multiple plys, the sheet can be marketed as 800 threadcount, or even 1200 threadcount if three separate plys have been twisted into the one thread.
In summary a 2ply thread woven into a 300 thread count can be called a 600 thread count but may be lower quality than a 1ply 300 thread count sheet.
For hotel linen using a quality 1ply thread, an average thread count of between 180 and 300 is the perfect weight for comfort and durability.
3) What is a percale weave?
Percale is a closely woven, one thread over / one thread under plain weave. The weave gives the fabric strength and durability. This is what five star hotels use. Percale can wrinkle initially and feel stiff until the sheets are broken in and the fibres have softened with use.
The benefits of percale are:
- Percale sheets feel strong, cool & crisp
- Percale sheets does not pill
- Percale sheets are easy care (low or no ironing)
- Percale sheets are breathable
4) Do polyester cotton percale blends breathe?
Yes, the polyester is a thinner thread than cotton, and during the percale weaving process little open pockets are created, resulting in a breathable blend.
5) What is a sateen weave?
A sateen weave is three or four threads under, and one over, exposing more yarn to the surface and creating a lustrous sheen and silky feel. Usually it's woven more tightly, resulting in a higher average thread count. Sateen sheets are slightly less durable, are more likely to pill or snag, less breathable and the shine is often enhanced with chemicals that fade with use.
The benefits of sateen are:
- Sateen sheets feel silky smooth
- Sateen sheets have a lustrous feel
- Sateen sheets are warm to touch (best in cooler climates)
- Wrinkle less
If you want to buy hotel linen that lasts and is easy to care for, look for a percale polyester / cotton blend and a threadcount between 180 and 300.
And to ensure your hotel linen isn't prematurely damaged, don't skimp on cleaning equipment for your cleaners and guests. You don't want them to be tempted to wipe up spills with pillowcases or facewashers. Make sure you have plenty of tissues, wipes and sponges in your guest quarters.