'Back of house' (or 'back of the house') is a rather archaic term, having survived over the centuries. It was first used in the Middle Ages in England to describe the area of an inn where food was prepared, which was normally located outside and to the rear, and therefore was called the back of house area. Its modern interpretation is similar, as it is commonly used to describe the areas of a restaurant, which are normally off limits to the guests, e.g. the kitchen. The term also applies to hotels where the areas include laundry and other support areas.