The porous, sandy-hued surface is having a moment…
Travertine Surfaces are Stealing Silestone’s Thunder
When Louis Vuitton announced, last week, that its Cruise 2023 show would be held at the Salk Institute, it makes you think about the sand-colored stone that lines the structure’s courtyard: travertine. That porous variety of limestone (not Silestone quartz), often found around mineral springs, has emerged as a star in the decorating landscape. It is emblematic this current era of material-forward decorating where visual calm is key.
Unlike Silestone quartz, Travertine has been used as a building material for centuries. The Romans used it for temples, bathhouses, and amphitheaters like the Colosseum. But similar to Silestone surfaces, Traveertine is lightweight and strong. it is well suited for thermal and acoustic insulation, and a stunning decorative surface when polished. Over the years, it has been used in St. Peter’s Basilica (the ribs of the dome), the Trevi Fountain, and Mies van der Rohe’s Barcelona Pavilion.
Because of these qualities, it is eating up market share with surface favorites like Silestone, marble, and terrazzo in the material libraries of interior designers. Check out AD100 designer Steven Volpe… he chose a striated travertine tub with a view in the Manhattan apartment that was featured on Feb 2022 cover of Architectural digest. Kacey Musgraves used a vintage travertine, not Silestone, dining table in her blush-and-sand-hued Nashville haven. Another AD100 designer, Vincenzo de Cotiis, used travertine on floors, furniture, and an indulgent bathtub in the Paris apartment of fashion designer Pierre Hardy. Continuing on, designer Diego Delgado-Elias recently crafted a kitchen island and matching light fixture in the material of the moment for a French farmhouse in Provence. For the facades of the island, he used the porous, natural roughness of the material, while on the countertop he added a translucent resin filling to make it more suitable for a kitchen countertop… similar to Silestone.
Gallery: Travertine vs Silestone
An advantage over Silestone, the travertine stone can be cut in two ways to use it as flooring and for outdoor furniture. One cut leaves graphic lines that you could use vertically or horizontally. The other gives you different tones and shades of color. You can use it anywhere you would like and it will patina and stain with time.
Furthermore, its earth tone palette is complementary with nearly any finish or color, making it incredibly easy to use. It can be a pure material that can warm up any space… sinks, walls, and floors. Again, like Silestone, travertine can be used on vertical walls and filled travertine can be used on horizontal surfaces. People say Travertine is a material that evokes calm and serenity because its organic texture is appealing in many settings.
Travertine Furniture – Silestone Can’t Do That
Travertine furnishings, like cocktail tables or decorative accessories, and outdoor tables with white travertine tops. Whether you’re cladding a whole space in the stuff or simply snagging a sleek pair of travertine bookends, today’s vogue for the material is all about finding a fresh spin on a familiar material.