Luxury hotels offer a huge range of perks to keep loyal guests coming back, but for many weary travellers, a comfortable night's sleep is the biggest deal-breaker.
If you've found yourself returning to the same hotel or hotel chain because you had a great night's sleep, finding out the trade secrets of what make their beds so comfortable could help you enjoy that same five-star experience in the comfort of your own home.
What are the different types of mattresses?
The most basic distinction between mattresses is the materials they're made from and the systems used to help balance comfort and support. The most common types of mattresses are:
Used by the vast majority of hotels worldwide, these mattresses use coil springs to support the body, topped by soft comfort layers or a mattress topper. High-end hotels are more likely to use a pocket spring mattress with individually zoned springs that offer customised support for different areas of the body.
Memory foam mattress
A popular choice for people who prefer a soft mattress, or who have aches and pains or joint conditions that can be soothed by sinking into foam. Memory foam mattresses are less common in hotels, as some guests don't like the 'sinking feeling,' although memory foam is still used in other ways.
Many luxury hotels incorporate memory foam into innerspring mattresses or use memory foam mattress toppers to help offset the firmness of a spring mattress and find a comfortable middle ground. Some also use cool gel memory foam that absorbs heat to avoid the bed heating up or feeling stuffy during the night.
Rarely seen in hotels, a natural latex mattress can be a more expensive option, but they also offer unique benefits. Latex is a naturally hypoallergenic and antibacterial material that won't attract germs or bugs. It offers the pliability of memory foam and the firmness of a spring mattress, with a longer lifespan than either.
Talking to your local mattress store and trying out mattresses in person should help you decide how to choose a mattress that suits your individual needs.
Which hotel has the most comfortable mattress?
Here's how the world's leading hotel brands make sure their guests enjoy a comfortable night's sleep and keep them coming back for more.
DoubleTree by Hilton
DoubleTree's Sweet Dreams Bed was custom made for the hotel chain to isolate sleepers' movements and keep guests from tossing and turning in the night. High quality comfort layers aim to make a good impression on experienced high-end travellers. These have also been made flame resistant to avoid costly accidents.
Fairmont Hotels and Resorts
Fairmont redesigned its current mattresses in 2016 to improve the experience of guests:
- The Fairmont Bed incorporates cooling gel memory foam to combat stuffiness with a plush pillow top cradling the head and supporting the neck and spine.
- The Fairmont Gold Bed, reserved for luxury suites, combines gel memory foam with high quality innersprings, striking the ideal balance between comfort and support for most guests' needs.
Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts
Unlike most hotels that offer a single mattress option to guests, the Four Seasons allows guests to customise their mattress topper. Guests can choose their preferred level of firmness:
- Medium – suitable for most people, balances comfort and support
- Soft – suitable for side sleepers and people with aches and pains who need pressure relief
- Firm – suitable for people who sleep on their stomach or tall or heavy guests who require more support
All three options help to keep sleepers cool with a ventilating foam core and independent pocket springs to support different areas of the body. These springs also reduce motion on each side of the bed, helping couples to sleep more soundly.
Read more about the differences between a hard and soft mattress to find out what firmness level is right for you.
Hilton Hotels & Resorts
Hilton's Serenity Bed is popular with VIP guests and was custom designed for the brand to deliver a premium sleep experience.
Based on the traditional box spring bed, the Serenity Bed has more coils than a standard innerspring mattress for improved motion absorption and offers more spinal support. The quilted design of the mattress topper ensues comfort and may also help to improve circulation and sleep quality.
Marriott Hotels & Resorts
Marriott is another chain that offers guests a choice of mattress options:
- The Marriott Bed is a high density foam mattress that offers medium-firm support and prevents sleeping partners from sinking into each other during the night.
- The Innerspring is a firmer mattress that uses independent pocket coils for sleepers who prefer a more supportive bed.
The Peninsula Hotels
Each hotel in the Peninsula family has its own custom-designed mattresses. These are based on a hybrid mattress design that combines the support of pocket springs with the comfort of foam, supported by a box spring. Several comfort layers of plush fabric quilting on top and cooling technology to regulate temperature help to ensure a sound sleep.
Radisson also allows guests to choose their preferred mattress firmness in select hotels, making sure they get the support or relief they need. The brand's Sleep Number beds are rated on a scale of firmness from soft to firm that guests can select.
Couples with different sleeping preferences can find custom beds with different firmness levels on each side, so there's no need to suffer with an unsatisfying compromise.
Ritz-Carlton hotels are renowned for their luxury, which is partly thanks to a custom-designed bed and mattress set. The mattress combines individually wrapped coils with gel memory foam to help you stay cool while you sleep. A removable feather mattress topper offers extra softness and comfort if desired.
Softel's SoBed is another variation on the hybrid mattress, combining coil springs with a high density foam mattress to offer the best of both worlds. A down topper is included between the mattress and the fitted sheet, providing a softer sleep for those who prefer it or who suffer from aches and pains. This mattress topper can be removed if a firmer sleep is preferred.
The W Mattress has a core of over 1,000 pocket coils and is topped by thick comfort layers for a supportive and comfortable finish. Guests can choose between a firm pillow topper or soft plush topper to suit their sleeping preference, posture and health needs.
Westin Hotels & Resorts
One of the first luxury hotel chains to debut its own signature bed, Westin's Heavenly Bed was introduced in 1999. This pocket spring mattress offers firm support balanced out by a soft pillow top and supplemented by down pillows and an overstuffed doona.
How often do hotels change their mattresses?
Mattresses have a limited lifespan that depends on the materials they're made from and how they are used. Hotels with high occupancy rates will need to replace their mattresses more often than a regular household to make sure guests enjoy the as-new feeling every night – ideally every 3 to 5 years. Hotels that try to save money by keeping mattresses for longer risk unsatisfied guests if a mattress has lost its shape or support.
A luxury mattress made from high quality materials will last longer than a cheap mattress, but there can still be big differences between materials. Generally, innerspring mattresses – the most common type used by hotels – wear out faster than memory foam, as the springs are subject to wear and tear and can bend out of shape. A natural latex mattress can last longer than any other type of mattress, typically 15 years when it's well looked after.
Should I buy a hotel mattress?
Only a select few hotel brands work with their own designers to create bespoke beds. Most have contracts with luxury mattress companies and use the same types of mattresses that anyone can purchase from high-end stores.
Some of these hotels offer these rebranded mattresses for sale through their own online stores, but these are often sold at hugely inflated prices compared to buying from a mattress store. You also won't have the chance to try a mattress before you buy, unless you're a regular guest. You also may not be able to return the mattress if it's not satisfactory, unlike mattress stores that usually offer a tryout period.
If a hotel has given you a night to remember, a better option is to find out what kind of luxury mattress they use so you can buy a similar mattress for your home at a more affordable price. Rather than buying a mattress that's been designed to please everyone, you should shop for a custom mattress designed for your individual needs.
Enjoy a five-star experience at home
Browse DeRUCCI's luxury mattress range to see the latest foam, latex and pocket spring mattresses engineered by our talented Italian design team.
Visit your local mattress store in Australia to talk to our staff about designing your custom sleep solution. We also offer dual firmness mattresses for couples so you can look forward to a restful sleep every night.