Materials such as concrete are increasingly being used in interior design in response to the continuing trend for bringing nature indoors and going back to the elements. Concrete effect worktops are often used to create an industrial feel, particularly in the contemporary kitchen.
Such environments, however, require materials that are highly durable and practical, as well as having aesthetic appeal. It is for these reasons that cast stone materials, such as quartz, are increasingly being specified for use in environments such as the kitchen and bathroom. Boasting the best qualities of materials such as concrete, along with its own special features, quartz concrete effect worktops have been gaining popularity domestically for the past decade. Quartz enables the look of polished and honed concrete to be achieved, with none of the inherent problems of casting and polishing concrete slabs.
Offering a superior level of durability and ease of maintenance, quartz can be chosen to mimic the look of a polished concrete kitchen worktop, while being non-porous with no blemishes or casting marks.
In the mix
Our engineered quartz material is created by mixing natural quartz with polymer resins. The result is a durable, low-maintenance, natural stone-look surface that is extraordinarily hard and resilient. These characteristics combine to create practical concrete effect worktops for kitchens, bathrooms, flooring and wall cladding.
The reasons for the resilience of quartz surfaces can be traced back to the manufacturing process, which begins with a thorough inspection of all the raw materials, to ensure they are 100% suitable. While the main ingredient is predominantly natural quartz, pigments and polymer resins are also added. Once blended together, the raw materials are poured into a mould to form slabs which are pressed and cured to make them strong and solid. Once cured the slabs are calibrated and polished to the required finish, passing through quality control before the stone worktops are packed ready for distribution.
Form and function
Unlike materials such as concrete, which require sealing to make them suitable for wet environments such as the kitchen and bathroom, along with a great deal of maintenance to keep them looking the part, this cast stone is more than suitable for these areas of the home. Quartz is practical and durable, retaining the natural, tactile qualities of concrete in a surface that is highly durable and very easy to care for, offering a concrete kitchen countertop that combines both the right look and the practicality needed in modern homes.
Indeed, the best features of quartz are actually invisible; the material is scratch, heat and stain resistant. Requiring minimum maintenance to keep it looking as good as new, the non-porous surface makes cleaning simple, with soap and water or a mild detergent all that is needed. As quartz isn’t porous like other stone surfaces, the material is a hygienic option for the kitchen and bathroom, being 99.9 percent bacteria-free. Its durability also means that, unlike other types of stone worktops, quartz resists staining or corrosion from cooking oils, liquids and most household cleaning products, so there is no requirement for periodic resealing of the surface as there is with many materials.
Practicalities aside, a lot of what makes quartz so appealing for interior designers is its aesthetic qualities. Cast stone such as CRL Quartz offers a beauty that is similar to natural stone, but in a wide range of colours and several finishes.
A versatile design solution appropriate for any setting, this quartz is available in a variety of colours, including a concrete effect worktop option that offers a polished concrete worktop finish. Just like natural stone, quartz work surfaces allow for a variety of edging options. Unlike stone, however, engineered concrete effect quartz also offers other design possibilities. Because it is more flexible to work with and available as a large slab format that is held in place using glue and epoxy instead of screws, quartz can be used on larger vertical surfaces like backsplashes and even shower enclosures, without the fissures and seams that are often visible with natural stone worktops.
In thicknesses of 20 mm and 30 mm, our quartz surfaces come in an extra-large format slab measuring up to 3300 x 1650 mm, allowing for greater consistency in design over large spaces such as kitchen worktops.
The availability and flexibility of natural materials is one of the biggest reasons for their popularity and that is where solutions such as quartz come into their own. What consumers and designers seek above all when creating a new space is a choice of worktop materials – no two homes are the same and tastes vary greatly, even when a particular look is heavily on trend. With a wide range of colours and countertop materials available that emulate the look and feel of materials such as concrete, including laminate worktops and ceramic worktops, quartz offers a perfect solution for those looking for a stylish and practical concrete countertop.
For more information, please see our brochure containing design inspiration and specifications of our quartz worktop, or take a look at our two most popular concrete effect worktops, Concrete Gris and Soft Concrete.Request Brochure Request a Sample