Hotel staff compete against each other with vacuums and mops in the wild ‘Housekeeping Olympics’

Las Vegas is known for having a lot of hotels — over 100, by some estimates. However, what many people don’t know is that the hotel housekeeping professionals who work on the Las Vegas Strip don’t just spend all of their time cleaning up other people’s bachelorette parties and wild nights out — they also get together each year to compete in a “Housekeeping Olympics” to show off their skills.

If you’re wondering what a Housekeeping Olympics consists of, it’s exactly what you think it is. For the last 30 years, teams from Las Vegas hotels like the Mirage, New York New York, and the MGM, to name a few, gather together once a year to compete against each other in events like a vacuum race, a bed-making speed contest, a toilet paper and toilet brush toss, and a mop relay race — all while wearing fun, color-coordinated T-shirts or full-on costumes.

Take a look at this hotel staff’s mummy-inspired costumes at the 2019 games on the International Executive Housekeepers Association (IEHA) Facebook page:

Meanwhile, here’s a competitor in the mop relay race:

The toilet brush toss requires contestants to throw a toilet brush into a garbage can from quite a distance away:

According to the Mandalay Bay President Chuck Bowling, the point of the Housekeeping Olympics is to celebrate the city’s housekeeping professionals, since they are basically the unsung heroes of the hospitality industry.

The Housekeeping Olympics isn’t just a team-building exercise, either, as there are actual awards given out. Judges determine the winners of each event and award them with gold, silver and bronze medals.

At the end of the day, the team with the most medals takes home a trophy for being best overall. (There are smaller trophies for the runner-up teams.) In 2019, the Venetian Hotel took home the top prize, beating out 14 other hotels.

Here they are in a Facebook photo accepting their winning trophy:

But from this Facebook photo, it looks like a great time was had by all — whether or not they won a top prize!

In addition to Las Vegas, the Housekeeping Olympics is also held in other cities hosted by the IEHA. However, the Vegas games are probably the best-known, thanks to the city’s status as a hotel mecca.

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About the Author
Margeaux Baulch Klein
Margeaux Baulch Klein is a freelance writer and digital strategist based in Los Angeles. She has written for publications like the Huffington Post, New York Daily News, Bustle, and HelloGiggles, among others.

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