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The Opryland Hotel -- Florida's One-Of-A-Kind Laundry

ORLANDO, FL -- When it opens in February 2002, Florida’s new Opryland hotel will stand as a testament to a successful collaboration in design and construction, rivaling its sister hotel the Opryland Hotel in Nashville, Tennessee both in size, and design.

Currently under construction, the massive 1,406 room hotel and convention center is situated on 62.5 acres just minutes from Orlando’s Walt Disney World. In the Opryland tradition, its unusual design will include four acres under glass containing a Key West Atrium, an Everglades Atrium and a Grand Atrium displaying a combination of Floridian natural and cultural aspects.

But the most unusual aspect of this multi-million dollar project is in the management of the hotel’s 26,000 square foot laundry. The laundry, capable of handling up to 22 million pounds annually, will be run by an outside company as a separate on-site business.

A Matter of Efficiency
In July 1998, Gaylord Entertainment, a $500 million dollar diversified entertainment company formed the Opryland Hospitality Group to take its' successful convention hotel concept of Nashville’s Opryland Hotel and roll it out around the country in a planned series of hotels. Florida’s Opryland Hotel is the first in that series and its unusual laundry set-up was initiated as an efficiency and cost saving measure.

"We looked at what it would take to get our laundry handled off-premises through other providers and decided they just weren't up to speed for our size," explained Garrett Mathieu, Director of Operations Analysis for the Opryland Hospitality Group. In the end, a management contract was signed with Five Star Laundry Inc. of Chicago, one of the only laundry companies nationwide doing pure hospitality business with a focus on large hotels.

Under the agreement Opryland Hospitality Group supplies the building, the engineers and the basic services needed to run the laundry while Five Star purchased the equipment and owns and runs the laundry.

Beneficial All Around
It’s a situation that benefits both parties. The Opryland Hospitality Group enjoys lower laundry costs versus operating it themselves or outsourcing in addition to the ability to focus on their core business. At the same time they can leave the laundry to Five Star's expertise while maintaining the advantage of direct daily contact with the laundry staff to ensure quality of service and timely delivery.

"The benefit to us is that we have no construction costs and no boilers to worry about," said Ed Chen, president of Five Star. The huge savings investment of 30 to 40 percent in construction and cost savings from an equipment and employee standpoint means Five Star can pass those savings on to Opryland Hospitality Group. The deal also allows Five Star to handle outside hotel laundry from the site.

"Five Star is a one-stop-shop kind of laundry," said Carmen Coluccio, general manager at Opryland’s Florida plant who oversees the laundry’s 120 employees who work two shifts. "Whether it's drycleaning, valet, apparel, towels, sheets, mops, rags, whatever your needs are we can accommodate them."

And they meet those laundry needs by operating with a Milnor 12-chamber (130-lb) CBW, a Milnor 31-bar single stage press, two Milnor 450-lb Split Pocket Washer/Extractors, six Milnor 220-lb double batch gas fired tumble dryers, and a Milnor 460-lb natural gas dryer. Finishing includes four, three-roll 32” deep chest steam ironers, three, two-station spreader feeders, five small piece folders, two four lane folder / cross folders with single stackers and stain reject and five small piece towel folders.

Chris Tabelling, Tennessee engineer for Wink Davis Equipment Company of Atlanta, Georgia won the bid to outfit the three million dollar laundry and handle the shop drawings and layout

Quick Rinse - News From Around The World

Faultless Laundry Spending $12 million on New Plant

ST. LOUIS, Mo. — Faultless Laundry Co. is spending almost $12 million on a facility to accommodate its growing St. Louis business which has grown from 28 million pounds to 36 million pounds due to a new contract. Faultless serves more than 30 acute hospitals and over 400 retail medical locations in the St. Louis and Kansas City areas.