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Efficiency & Conservation at The Denver Hyatt Regency

 The 1100-room Hyatt Regency Denver Convention Center Hotel is situated in the heart of downtown Denver.... Adjacent to the Colorado Convention Center and only one block from shopping at 16th Street Mall, it is in close proximity to the city’s most popular historic, cultural and entertainment venues. With 37 floors of stocked linen supply closets and three floors of food and beverage outlets, meeting rooms and kitchens – the hotel generates plenty of work for the laundry.

Total poundage of the Hyatt Regency was 3,039,374 lbs. in 2006. In 2007 it increased 15% to 3.5 million. And with tourists flocking to the Denver area, laundry poundage is on an uphill climb. The 2006-07 tourism rates increased 13% and they’re projected to increase 26% for 2007-08.

The Hyatt laundry also processes table linen for an off premises event rental company. In 2006, the Hyatt Denver laundry processed 71,000 lbs of rental linen, and in 2007 that number climbed to over 75,000 lbs.

The Denver Hyatt conserves resources through a green initiative. Guests are offered the option of reusing towels and linens or having them replaced daily. “Many guests take advantage of the reuse option,” says laundry manager, Brandi Brooks. 
Even though more guests are taking advantage of the reuse program, there is plenty of work to be done. Since opening in 2005 the laundry, which opened in 2005, still buzzes on Monday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 6am to 5:30pm, for two 10-hour shifts. The first shift has 11 employees and operates from 6am to 4:30pm and the second shift has 26 employees working from 7am to 5:30pm. On off days, they sort linen in order to expedite the process during days of operation. 

Director of Engineering Mike Falzone and Brooks have honed in on their energy conservation skills to save their laundry and other Hyatt laundries another important resource - money. They have initiated a laundry housekeeper’s guide to train housekeepers on how to run efficiently. And it’s working.

Energy consumption was reported at 192 BTUs per lb. Chemical consumption is performed in house and is reported to be 1.25 per clean 100 weight goods out of the door. Chemicals are centrally located with formula times and chemicals administered by Ecolab. Eco-star is hooked up to four conventional washers to control flush times and chemical injections. Formula times have decreased. Cold water is used to further reduce energy expenditures. To further the hotel’s green initiative, Brandi Brooks and Adam Vesely, an Ecolab representative, participated in a PMI class to ensure operation efficiency while controlling labor, chemical, and energy consumption. 

Even with the laundry’s high standard for quality of processed goods, rewash rates are low at 1-3% with the national average being 3-5%. They use about 1.2 gallons of water per pound of goods, which includes the whole laundry -- not just their tunnels. Tunnel water consumption is 0.8 gallons per pound of goods.

“All linen is inspected prior to folding and feeding,” says Brooks. “We maintain a 5 par standard to process linen: 1- on bed, 1- ready to go on beds, 1- being cleaned, and 2- extra sets of linen, just in case.” 

The rooms are equipped with 300-thread count linen, triple sheeting, down comforters and throw-blankets. All of the bedding and decorative pillows were designed to be washable so that they can be cleaned on a regular schedule.

Laundry equipment installation was handled by Timm Mullen of Martin-Ray Laundry Systems. “Timm Mullen is a quick problem solver, and he’s helped in case production efficiency and he’s always thinking ahead for ways to improve our operations,” Falzone says.

The Denver Hyatt has a laundry staff of 40 employees, including management. On the production side, the hotel is equipped with a Milnor Model 76039- 7 G3 Plus CBW®- Continuous Batch Washer with Windows® based Mentor® Controller, a Milnor Model MP 1603 Single Stage Membrane Press, Milnor Model COSHM 112 Two Cake Shuttle, four Milnor Model 64058 TG1 Gas Fired Double Batch Dryers, Milnor Model MLF 3636 Central Lint Collector, Milnor Mentor & Multi-Trac Central Control Station, Milnor Mildata Network Control, Milnor Model Conway Weighing Five Compartment Loading Conveyor, Milnor Model 36021 V5J, 80- lb. washer-extractor, a Milnor Model 42026 V6J, 140-lb. washer-extractor, two Milnor Model 48040 F7B, 275 lb. two way tilting washer-extractor, a Milnor 60-lb. washer-extractor, and three Cissell Model M190 gas dryers with a 190 lb. capacity. Additionally there is an LWS45 Top Load Speed Queen Washer and a LES37 Speed Queen small electric dryer in use. The laundry uses a custom Heat Recovery System from Thermal Engineering.

On the finishing side, the laundry has a Chicago Model Pic Quik Sheet Picker, Chicago Model King Edge Sheet Spreader Feeder, Two Chicago Model Century 5200, 2 Roll Steam Heated Iron, Two Chicago Model Skyline S16 Four Lane Cross Folder, One Chicago Model Air Chicago Towel Folder, and one Ingersol Rand Model UP6-30. The laundry also uses a Felins bundling machine.

The laundry is a clean environment and attractive place to work. The employees enjoy a well-lit, air-conditioned facility with ceilings that are over 25 feet high. Labor and morale within the laundry are great, with 50 percent of the original labor force still under Brooks’ management. “The low turn over rate is due to employees being transferred to other departments within the Hyatt as they move up within the organization,” says Brooks. Employees receive benefits from Hyatt, encouraging them to stay loyal to the hotel. Some of the benefits include: free meals in the cafeteria, reduced bus passes, a full health and dental plan, retirement and 12 complimentary room nights at Hyatt hotels around the globe.

Quick Rinse - News From Around The World

Gulf Coast Laundry Acquired by Swisher Hygine

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Swisher Hygiene Inc., a provider of hygiene and sanitation products and services, announced that it acquired Gulf Coast Laundry Services of Mississippi, LLC (“Gulf Coast Laundry Services”), a Mississippibased linen services company.

Gulf Coast Laundry Services provides linen rental and laundry services throughout southern Mississippi, Louisiana and Alabama, primarily to hotel, casino and resort customers. Concurrent with the acquisition, the founder of Gulf Coast Laundry Services, David Gross, will join Swisher Hygiene and contribute to the continued growth of its linen services business.

Total consideration paid by Swisher Hygiene in connection with the acquisition includes approximately $4.8 million in cash and the issuance of a convertible promissory note which may be converted into a maximum of 350,000 shares of Swisher Hygiene common stock subject to certain restrictions, including acceptance by the Toronto Stock Exchange.