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Towering over Downtown Salt Lake City, The Grand America Hotel takes luxury to a new level. Its grandeur extends into every last detail – from the décor to the amenities and the guest rooms to the on-site laundry – the experience is 5-stars all around.
Chang Jeong, Director of Laundry/Valet at The Grand America, is responsible for ensuring that the linen used throughout the hotel receives that same 5-star treatment.
The original laundry opened in March of 2001 for the 2002 Winter Olympic Games. After operating for 20 years, Jeong expressed interest in remodeling the facility and updating the machinery to include Milnor’s PulseFlow® Technology. He worked with Cameron Owens of Mendenhall Commercial Laundry Equipment to design a state-of-the-art laundry facility that would result in overall savings without compromising wash quality.
Remodeling began on February 1, 2023, and on March 31, 2023 - just eight weeks later - The Grand America’s new laundry was ready for start-up.
Achieving this was no small feat, but Jeong notes, “We had a great project team, great contractors, great vendors, including Cameron and the Mendenhall Team, who were ready for us. Everyone came together to meet our deadline.”
The newly renovated 23,000 square foot, high-tech centralized laundry now services both The Grand America and The Little America, providing linen for 1,625 guest rooms, multiple on-site restaurants, kitchens, room services, banquets, a fitness center and the Grand Spa.
Linen from The Grand America arrives to the facility by a laundry chute that spans the height of the hotel, while linen from The Little America is trucked in daily. The goods are then sorted and loaded on a four-compartment loading conveyor that weighs and indexes each batch of linen before washing begins.
At the heart of the laundry sits an 8-module 150 lb Milnor PulseFlow® Technology tunnel. Contributing to overall efficiency, the tunnel transfers loads every 2.5 minutes and processes up to 3,240 pounds of linen per hour. By utilizing PulseFlow technology, the Grand America laundry now achieves a low water consumption average of 0.36 gallons per pound. Jeong notes that fresh water usage is down by 65% in the new laundry and that the PulseFlow tunnel uses 80% less water than what is required for conventional washer-extractors.
Moving through the system, clean batches are routed through a hydraulic Single Stage Press to remove water and then are loaded into one of five automated double-batch Pass-Through Dryers via two-tiered cake shuttle.
Once dry, flat goods such as sheets, pillowcases, napkins and table linens are fed into one of three Chicago Dryer flatwork-ironing systems for feeding/spreading, ironing, and folding/stacking. Upon completion, the goods are automatically sorted by size and delivered by separate stackers, saving labor and promoting a better quality of packaged linen.
The Grand America centralized laundry system also includes an on-site Dry Clean/Uniform services, providing hotel guests and employees with immediate access to a variety of first-class hotel services, including dry-cleaning, pressing, and fine tailoring.
With a production rate estimated at approximately 22,810 pounds of linen per day during an average 8-hour production day and 6 million pounds annually, investing in a new laundry has proven to be a successful endeavor thus far.
“We have already seen significant savings in water, sewer and gas and look forward to achieving even more savings with the help of PulseFlow technology,” notes Jeong. Additionally, The Grand America laundry has been able to reduce production by an entire shift – going from nearly 14 hour operation days to 7 hours. Another added benefit, according to Jeong, is that his employee morale has never been better.
Reflecting on the project, Owens adds, “I have had the pleasure of working with Chang over the last 18 years and have the utmost respect for his industry expertise and attention to detail throughout the entire project. The new laundry renovation required the existing equipment removal, new flooring, new lighting, new paint, and utility modifications all within less than 7 weeks. Chang was usually the first on site and the last to leave showing just a small token of his overall commitment to the project. The new laundry at The Grand America has exceeded all expectations which is credited towards a great team including The Grand America Management and Contractors, Mendenhall Equipment, Chicago and of course Milnor.”
The Grand America, Mendenhall and Milnor’s support for each other has proven to be a successful partnership that will keep its laundry status at 5-stars for years to come.
For more information on how Milnor equipment can benefit your laundry, visit www.milnor.com.