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10 Packing Commandments from Hotel de Rome's 'Professional Packer'

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  Site Where: Behrenstrasse 37, Berlin, Germany, 10117
June 3, 2014 at 5:42 PM | by | ()

Problematic packers, you know who you are.

You can’t zip your suitcase without your entire family doing a tap dance on top of it. At the airport, people congratulate your Samsonite and ask “how far along” it is. When you unpack at the hotel, your once-neatly pressed wardrobe looks like someone was trying to teach themselves origami with your conference outfits.

There is help for people like you, and his name is Ivica Tot-Genz. As the laundry manager at Rocco Forte’s Hotel de Rome in Berlin, Tot-Genz has become the Yoda of luggage management. He’s an interesting guy, a trained bespoke tailor (eye for measurements) who used to fold parachutes for stowing under pilots’ seats in his native Croatia. And his “professional packing” service is inclusive for Hotel de Rome guests.

To give us a taste of his experience-gleaned ideas, Tot-Genz shared with us ten of his Top 10 Packing Tips:

1. Plan ahead. Yes, you need to. Make an actual list of items, gather them up, take a final pass trimming nonessentials, and pick a case that fits. We know it’s tempting to wing it, but you’re asking for inconvenience.

2. Put heavy things at the bottom. A simple but often overlooked step. Build a solid foundation with heavier items, like books, so they don’t wind up smashing the rest of your hard work

3. Take the edge out. Rolling is better than folding. Think about it: Trousers, t-shirts, ties and so on do won’t crease as much if they are rolled.

4. Get things down on paper. Tissue paper, that is; it prevents creases. Wrap or roll jackets, trousers and so on in tissue paper, which will absorbs the creasing so the clothes stay wrinkle-free.

5. Stay in shape. Use cardboard. Tot-Genz puts thin cardboard underneath shirts to help them retain their shape.

6. Stuff it. Not the suitcase, your jacket. To avoid jacket sleeves wrinkling, stuff tissue paper up the sleeves to absorb any crunching.

7. Spread yourself around. Those little shoe organizers are all well and good, but pack shoes individually in shoe bags (or plastic bags) so you can spread them around the case like puzzle pieces.

8. Save the skivvies for last. Finish with underwear and socks. They do double duty as padding, and can go into small gaps that are left after the important stuff.

9. Stay dry. Liquids belong in a separate bag. Who are you, Evel Knievel? Live on the edge all you want, but the rest of us will avoid unpacking the tragic result of shower gel that was jostled in flight.

10. If it doesn’t fit, you must acquit. At the end of the day, not tips will help if you’re trying to put a week’s worth of clothes in an overnight bag. Let the clothing fit the case. Besides — don’t you want room for souvenirs?

[Image: Ivica Tot-Genz, courtesy of Hotel de Rome]

Archived Comments:


I think this was mentioned an another similar post, but what is the legality of having this guy pack your bag prior to an international flight? When you get to the check in and they ask "Did you pack your own bag", your response is ??