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The most durable material for kitchen countertops, granite offers performance unmatched by other countertop surfaces. Granite is one of the hardest and durable of all building stones. Similar to lava, granite is an igneous rock that begins as liquid magma deep within the earth. The extreme pressure in the center of the earth compresses the liquid magma, creating a very dense material with minimal pores. Eye-catching and functional, granite is a speckled stone that ranges in hundreds of colors. The natural color variations result from a mixture of minerals such as feldspar, quartz and mica. Natural irregularities, in the interlocked minerals, create a beautiful array of kaleidoscopic patterns.
Marble is a metamorphic limestone suited best for light traffic areas, powder rooms and bathrooms. It begins as a sedimentary stone consisting of seashells and the bones of sea creatures that have settled to the ocean floor. High heat and pressure cause the fossilized materials, along with its original carbonate minerals, to crystallize and transform limestone into marble. Marble varies in color and veining from stone to stone as a result of fissures filled with minerals that are present during the stone’s formation.
Limestone is a sedimentary stone used mostly in light traffic areas. It consists of seashells and bones of sea creatures that have settled to the ocean floor. Calcium in the sediment combines with carbon dioxide in the water to form calcium carbonate, the basic structure of all limestone and marble.
Travertine is formed deep in the earth near hot, bubbling springs. Travertine features an “old-world” look. A slightly textured honed surface and subtle color tone variations throughout the material give it a warm and broken-in appearance. Travertine requires more attention to reduce staining and scratching than some other stone countertop products making it perfect for light traffic areas.
Engineered Quartz stone surfacing material is comprised of approximately 93-94% natural quartz aggregates, bound together with pigments and polyester resins. Available from Caesar Stone, Cambria, One Quartz Surface, Technistone, and Zodiaq. These products are practical, durable, and available in a wide range of natural stone and modern colors.
Onyx is a gemstone whose description can have several connotations. Its most accepted gemstone definition describes a solid black Chalcedony, or a banded or layered black and white Chalcedony. The term Onyx is occasionally used to described any engraved stone with a solid color base, or it may describe any banded gemstone with parallel banding. In its solid black form, Onyx is the most traditional black gemstone.