Travertine is a a form of limestone. Marble, by the way, is a form of limestone as well: metamorphosed limestone. Travertine and limestone have a strength and durability to withstand the ages – look at the amazing structures from the ancient Rome that still stand today.
Durability alone is not why this material is so commonly used on floors. Unlike it’s counterparts, travertine (and limestone, though not as often used as travertine varieties such as Durango Travertine from Mexico or Turkish Travertine) has a soft, smooth feel rather than the hard, slippery feel of marble or granite. You can find travertine in a polished form, but most installations for flooring use the honed finish.
Travertine has natural holes in the material, resulting during its formation. These holes are obvious in tumbled forms of the material, and give any area a nice, rustic look. These tiles are often used as accents or kitchen back splashes. Larger tiles are common outdoors.
Travertine is also more common in terms of residential flooring because of it’s durability. Marble is a far softer and more porous stone, so for high traffic areas that require little maintenance, travertine and limestone are top picks. Commercial installations should look into granite, the strongest of the materials.
For indoor installations, the most common travertine is honed, and filled. Filled means that the holes of the material have been filled with an epoxy that is meant to resemble natural colors that could pass as sediment in the stone. If you can’t find the color fill that you like, an unfilled tile can later be filled with the same or different grout than the one used between the seams of the tile.
Polished travertine is common in showers. These days you can find travertine slab fairly readily available, and it makes a great alternative for vanity tops and kitchen counters.
Marble is a beautiful stone, with color combinations and patterns that only nature could imagine. The stone is a metamorphic stone, giving it the “swirling” and veining patterns that make the stone unique. It is also able to take on a high polish, and is used often on floors, shower walls, and even kitchen countertops.
Marble is available in many finishes, including polished, honed, and tumbled. The most popular installation in the home is with polished marble. Many use a tumbled marble outdoors, allowing a greater variety of color than other traditional materials. Marble is also often used as an accent material, in combination with travertine in floors, or within mosaics.
Marble is one of the softer natural stone materials used for these purposes, and is susceptible to scratching. It is also quite porous, which makes it vulnerable to staining. Don’t let this dissuade you from using it in your home. Marble has been used as a building material for ages, and much of the capitols of the world are built in and clad in marble. Simple make sure that you understand the stone and how to care for it, and marble will offer you beauty and elegance for years to come.
There are also alternative finishes of the stone that will help introduce the color you want in your home without the worry of wear.For example, a tumbled marble tile installed in a bathroom floor, or as accents on the floor. A common installation of marble in the kitchen is on the island, and we often use honed marble for this purpose.
Also remember, certain surfaces receive very little traffic. For example, your shower walls. On shower floors, we generally install the tile in 2″ or 4″ squares, concealing damage and also offering better grip on the wet surface.
Marble, with the veins and patterns that give it that natural beauty also does a wonderful job of concealing damage on it’s own. Seal the material once or twice a year and you will have little to worry about. And with such a beautiful material, no vanity top should go without it.
Showers, like many other kitchen and bathroom surfaces are high impact areas in that they receive constant stress. Soaps, detergents, water, and regular traffic offer some obstacles that you should be aware of. Our most popular tile installation since we started working in Southern California has been travertine. The colors are earthy and compliment the feel that many of us Californians enjoy. It is a soft stone, and though it is not as resilient as granite, it is a stronger material than marble.
But don’t let the warning prevent you from getting travertine installed in your shower. Proper care, such as sealing the tile and grout once every 3 or 4 months will prevent staining, as well as keep the natural stone conditioned and looking like new. Just 10 minutes, every few months; not a bad exchange for the beauty of the stone.
Travertine is most commonly installed in a honed finish – a semi-polish that gives the tile a more earthy look and feel. You can find travertine in a tumbled variety, as well as the standard polished tile.
The tile also comes in a variety of sizes. For example, the most common tumbled travertine tiles installed in showers are 4″ x 4″, but you can find them in 6″, 8″, and even larger sizes. If you go with a tumbled tile, you have a little more freedom, as the softer marble tile becomes as resilient a stone.
Another popular tile is polished marble, but not used as frequently.
If you are looking for remodeling your home or doing a new shower installation, Marble Design Center of Orange County is the place for you. We offer demolition as well as installation services in Southern California of showers, mosaics, bath tub surrounds, bathroom floors, vanity tops, and much more.
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We’re out of the kitchen and online now! Or at least trying to be. We offer exceptional service and superior quality and want you to find us so that we can offer our services to you. So if you’re looking for a kitchen countertop, travertine tile, or anything with natural stone in your home or small commercial project, let us know!
We service Southern California, specializing in Orange County. We have worked as far south as San Diego and as far north as Los Angeles, and will make trips for exceptional projects. Our focus is in Orange County, in Irvine, Tustin, Mission Viejo, Laguna Hills, Laguna Beach, Newport Beach, Dana Point, and more. We have references in just about every one of these areas, and have probably hauled tiles or a countertop by your door at some point over the past decade or so.
We purchase our granite slabs and marble and travertine tile from wholesalers with whom we have a long standing relationship. Because of this we can offer you great value on top of our dedicated service. We want you to tell your friends and our customers do just that. We hope that you will too.
We hope that you consider us, Marble Design Center of Orange County, the next time you’re thinking of remodeling your kitchen or bathroom, or installing marble, travertine, or natural stone tile in your home. Vanity tops, kitchen countertops, and fireplace surrounds are a specialty, and our fabricators are experiences, courteous, and there to make your project a success.
Marble Design Center of Orange County – kitchen and bathroom remodeling experts. Let us know the next time you’re going to a stone yard and we’ll join you and help you navigate your way through all those granite slabs.