Polished granite is a popular choice for kitchen countertops due to its high durability and beauty.
Other residential and commercial uses of granite include floors, walls, fireplace surrounds, window sills and building fascia. Granite was formed from volcanic activity and is called an igneous rock. It is relatively non-porous and is one of the hardest stones available. It is not affected by acids contained in vinegar and citrus. Several factors affect granite price, particularly supply and demand. Supply is affected by the accessibility of the quarry, the amount and uniformity of stone in the quarry. Rare colors such as blue will be more costly.
IceStone® is man-made material that creates a durable surface from 100% recycled glass and cement.
This is an ideal choice if you want an eco-friendly, green countertop. IceStone can also be used for backsplashes, bathroom vanities, table tops, bar tops, interior walls and commercial flooring applications. IceStone can also be used to create shower and bathtub surrounds and kitchen sinks. Twenty-nine standard colors are available, and IceStone is a LEED-compliant building material.
Polished limestone is used for a variety of residential and commercial applications.
It is one of the most commonly used architectural stones. Limestone can be used for countertops, flooring, and window and door moldings. Limestone is a sedimentary rock formed under great pressure. It is a relatively soft rock compared to granite and is not recommended for kitchen countertop applications.
Polished marble is a popular choice for bathroom countertops and fireplace surrounds due to its unique patterns and beauty.
Other residential and commercial uses of marble include floors, walls and fireplace surrounds. Marble is a sedimentary rock formed under great pressure. Marble is a relatively soft rock compared to granite, so you should be aware before making this important decision that it’s not recommended for kitchen countertop applications. Supply is affected by the accessibility of the quarry, and the amount and uniformity of stone in the quarry.
Onyx is a sedimentary rock like marble and limestone.
The cryptocrystalline construction of the rock and the size and uniformity of its crystals contribute to the classic translucent property of most onyx varieties. Onyx is a relatively soft rock compared to granite so it is not recommended for kitchen countertop applications but is recommended for bathroom countertops, foyers, walls and fireplace surrounds. The decorative appeal of onyx is perhaps unsurpassed by any other material and is currently a popular choice with architects and designers.
Increasingly popular in homes, slate is chemically resistant and was traditionally used for chemistry laboratory table tops.
Slate is a metamorphic rock composed of clay or volcanic ash that forms under heat and pressure. Slate is frequently gray in color and may occur in a variety of its color shades, from the pale to dark. It may also have purple, green or cyan tones. Slate can be used for kitchen and bathroom countertops and fireplace surrounds.
Travertine is a sedimentary rock that forms from geothermal springs.
Like marble, it is a relatively soft rock and is acid sensitive. While not recommended for kitchen countertops, it can be used for bathroom countertops, floors, walls and fireplace surrounds. The soft earth tone of travertine stone makes this material a popular choice in contemporary and traditional home designs.