While there is no denying that the marble is the king of natural stones and looks stunning, the market today is flooded with better, cheaper choices.
Home owners increasingly are opting for affordable alternatives to marble worktops, in the form of engineered stone, made up of a small amount of quartz mixed with a binder.
Quartz countertops typically comprise 90%-93% natural ground quartz (a hard mineral) and approximately 7-10% resins, polymers, and pigments.
Quartz stone’s appearance varies from coarsely ground quartz offering a flecked appearance, while finely ground quartz offers a smooth look.
The results look like marble but are sturdier. Quartz can provide a marble-effect, on a more durable surface.
Natural stones like the marble and granite are not only unique, but they also may they require maintenance.
If you are on a lookout for hassle-free stunning looking worktops, that are practically maintenance free, consider quartz.
Quartz does not stain and scratch easily, unlike natural stone. Quartz countertops can offer a clean minimalistic look, as well as looks with veining.
As early as 1963, Breton, an Italian company developed the technology of creating engineered stone/Quartz.
Over the last 50 plus years, it has licensed the usage of this marvellous technology to over 50 companies around the world, carefully ensuring there is only one quartz manufacturer on each country.
With this intention, Cosentino (who makes Silestone) produces quartz in Spain, Compac Quartz makes their slabs in Portugal, Caesarstone in Israel and so on.
Having an exclusive quartz manufacturer per country ensures the result of the slabs are manufactured perfectly and under strict guidelines.
The different manufacturers add their own flair and aesthetic enhancers to their engineered stone counter-tops, creating some delightful pieces.
Despite the brand you chose, the composition, hardness, water absorption statistics, heat resistance and other functional properties remain the approximately same.
What differs from one quartz brand to another is:
The range of designs is the single biggest difference between quartz manufacturers.
The slab’s visual appeal, the colour, size, shape, and striations vary from one brand to another.
Since the look of the stone changes based on brands, the selection requires careful observation.
The sizes of the slab vary per the manufacturer.
Check the details before selecting the ones that best fit your requirements.
Whereas during the last 20 years the average slab size covered an average 4.27 m2, the advent of larger stones has resulted in an increase of the average quartz slab sizes to 5.16 m2.
Quartz slab prices are wholesale-only and are confined to the supply chain between manufacturer and approved dealers.
While one cannot directly negotiate with the manufacturers, it is advised to speak to a few dealers and opt for the best offers.
This is so, because rather than just buying a quartz slab, people also require carrying out labour on the material which differs in its characteristics.
Some of the largest quartz manufacturers in the world are:
Minnesota based; the company is the only American company in the quartz surfaces business.
Operating since 2000, the company is relatively new but offers a vivid selection of designs, colours, edges, and slab sizes.
Cambria Quartz is distinctive in that it is family-owned.
With a background on food processing, Cambria slabs are made with the highest degree of quality and with superior artistry.
Not only that Cambria uses its own quartz quarries to make their slabs, but the quality control of the material is second to none.
It results in stunning surfaces that are unparalleled by others when it comes to attention to detail.
The company calls itself “original” manufacturer of quartz countertop material and this Israel based company has been in the business since 1987.
The Israel based company, was the first manufacturer to produce engineered quartz slabs for the market.
Before it, most companies were producing composite marbles.
It is this innovative approach and the constant search for new products, that made Caesarstone of the largest quartz makers worldwide.
Not only that the brand boasts trusted network on all continents, but it is also listed on the NASDAQ stock exchange.
A Spanish Company and currently the largest quartz manufacturer in the world.
The brand-wide range of choices and vibrant colours make it highly versatile for any project.
The products come with long 25-year warranty making it a popular choice for interiors.
A few popular marble lookalike quartz options may include colours such as, Cambria Brittanicca, Opal Quartz Calacatta, Caesarstone Misty Carrera, Carrara Quartz and Quarella Carrara Navona, Opal Calacatta quartz, Opal Statuario, CRL Verona Quartz, and CRL Regency White Quartz.
The market is full of vivid choices, select a well-known quartz brand and then select the product that matched your requirements to enjoy long-lasting counter-tops.