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Countertop Options When Marble is Not an Option


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Countertop Options When Marble is Not an Option

When we start discussing countertop materials, we are often asked about natural marble countertops vs faux marble countertops as an alternative. The terms “Faux Marble” and “Cultured Marble” countertops are interchangeable. There is no shortage of information found on the internet that compare the two options. Often the difference in the price per square foot is only $10 - $25.00. But let’s face it, countertops can get expensive, and it all adds up. If you are looking for the appearance and functionality of a true white marble kitchen countertop but the average price of $65 -$85.00 per square foot for Danby marble (for example) will prevent you from moving forward, you do have options. Let’s take a look at a few of them here.

Faux Marble Countertops

First let’s understand Faux marble as your alternative to natural marble countertops. Faux Marble CountertopsThe typical recipe for faux marble countertops is pulverized marble dust, blended with engineered calcium carbonate, polyester resins, pigments and other ingredients. When the right combination of ingredients are mixed and color is achieved, this smooth slurry is poured into shaped molds. Faux marble was one of the first engineered countertop materials developed in the 1960’s. 
The process has improved over the years but to us, the result still looks fake. Once polished, it will never really have the look and luster of polished Carrara Marble. There are many benefits to engineered stone countertops over natural stone countertops that need to be noted though. At the top of the list is the care and maintenance required once you have installed a marble countertop. This post, “How to Care for Marble Countertops” suggests daily cleaning and annual applications of sealant for naturally quarried marble countertops. If you are not going to do the maintenance, let us recommend some other options of other engineered stone countertops.

Caesarstone Quartz Is a Favorite of Ours

Caesarstone is the brand name (and company) of the pioneers behind quartz countertops. We believe that this is the Quartz that looks most like marble and offers the durability we trust, most genuine look of engineered stone countertops. The Caesarstone quartz color library is vast. Calcutta Gold Marble is probably the most sought after stone for bathroom countertops and the Calacatta Nuvo variety of Caesarstone is so close in appearance that only an expert can tell the difference.
Quartz that looks like marble
In this post, we compare Quartz vs Corion. In addition to being harder, stronger, and safer than marble, Quartz countertops are easy to clean and very resistant to staining. Care is very simple with just soap and water, no need for sealing, and essentially effortless to maintain.

Engineered Stone Countertops to Consider

The Cosentino Group is one of the largest manufacturers of engineered stone in the world. They have developed several brands of countertop materials that are know as
Silestone resembles granite and marble but shines a little brighter because the quartz crystals give it more sparkle than the naturally occurring materials. Dekton is popular with the younger minimalist kitchen design crowd. It has more commercial applications in my opinion.
We are partial to a product called IceStone. It is manufactured locally in Brooklyn NY in an environmentally conscious way. They use 3 basic ingredients, recycled glass, pigments and cement with 0% Petrochemicals or Resins. Each slab of this product is like its own glass mosaic. It is very durable and is one of the easiest products to keep clean. No special sealing or cleansers are required. Liquid Palmolive dishwashing soap is all you need.
engineered stone countertops

Cambria Quartz – American Made and They Care

The Cambria Company is another US based manufacturer of engineered 
Cambria Quartz
stone countertops. They are very proud of the statement, “Your decision to buy Cambria products helps us invest over 95% of our costs back into the U.S. economy.” They have a wonderful reputation for quality and they have a VERY creative Inspiration Galley that we peak at now and again. They also have this whole Game of Thrones thing going on that we think is fun. 

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Posted by Tom Gilmour in Countertops | with 0 comments
Filed under: ceasarstone, engineered, faux, marble, stone, tjg

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Specializing in custom kitchen cabinetry designs in Princeton, Somerset, Central Jersey, Monmouth County, Hunterdon County, Morris County and Bucks County, PA.

Some photos depict kitchens designed by Lisa Tobias for DeMadera Design.

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