In-room Ironing for Guests: A Guide for Hotels

Normally I enjoy ironing. Minimal attention is required, enough to avoid burning one’s self or the garment, making it an ideal activity for deep thinking. Yet I dread ironing in hotel rooms.

It’s as if hotels sought out a consultant who specializes in dispensing advice on how to set up the most frustrating experience possible for ironing.

The consultant’s advice may go something like this…


First, ensure the building’s electrical plans call for all in-room electrical outlets to be placed only in areas of the room where positioning an ironing board nearby would be difficult at best, if not impossible. The goal here is for guests to have to perform one or more the following acts in order to plug in the iron:

  • Maneuvering under a desk to reach the outlet
  • Shifting the bed frame 1 to 6 inches away from the wall
  • Moving nightstands or other furniture
  • Unplugging lamps, the television, or alarm clock

With electrical outlets located in inconvenient locations, ironing board selection may begin.


The ironing board selection process continues with choosing the ironing board pad. IMAG0161The Lumpy Ironing Board Pad Depot caters to hotels and has a wide selection of lumpy ironing board pads sure to provide the opposite of a flat ironing surface. All pads in inventory are already at least ten years old and often include staining. Their slogan says it all: “If you’ve stayed in a hotel and had to iron a garment, you’ve seen our product!”

Iron selection is the final step in setting up in-room ironing.

IMAG0150No need to spend much money on irons; off brands will do. A brand one would never think would make irons will do, or a brand that appears to be intended for use in a foreign country. Be sure the irons you select offer a “Drip-While-Hot” feature. The Drip While Hot feature should allow small droplets of water to drip onto the garment during ironing. This is not to be confused with the steam feature of the iron. Steam from the iron should have the pressure of a fire hose, or be non-existent. To further frustrate your guests, select an iron with a self-winding cord keeper that doesn’t function properly.IMAG0201

That’s it! You’ve properly prepared your guests for a frustrating in-room ironing experience.

One final tip:

Your hotel housekeeping staff should receive special training to practice folding, rolling, and tucking the iron’s cord into the wall-mounted iron keeper. Your guests will get a good laugh when they realize they are unable to replicate the tidy fold.

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