The Marble Institute of America (MIA) recently hosted the first of two “Quarry Tours & More” seminars, which took place on May 16 and 17, 2007. Approximately 30 stone-industry members who were interested in learning more about quarrying in the North East participated in the tour, which pushed off in Barre, VT. During the two-day event, participants visited four quarries and three stone museums as well as a number of other points of interest to stone professionals.
As its name suggests, Grand Lux Café was designed with the intention of creating the ultimate dining experience. By incorporating a selection of rich fabrics and textures, custom handcrafted details and upscale materials such as natural stone into its design, the restaurant easily achieves the “upscale casual” appearance that it strives to project. While the first of its kind was opened several years ago in Las Vegas, other locations have since been established around the country. Among the most recent additions to the chain, which is a sister brand of The Cheesecake Factory, is the Grand Lux Café at the Town Center Mall in Boca Raton, FL, which includes elegant mosaic work that was manufactured by Mosaico Italiano of Pompano Beach, FL.
A combination of onyx and travertine transformed a contemporary master bath into a Zen-like spa in a private residence in Excelsior, MN. The stone palette - combined with 3-inch plank Brazilian Walnut flooring - created a haven where the homeowners can retreat at the end of a tiresome day.
Slate proved to be a versatile material for the redesign of a 2,700-square-foot lake home outside of Austin, TX. The multi-colored textured stone was used as flooring throughout the interior of the residence as well as for the floor surface of the veranda. Its warm tones and natural cleft finish helped to create an elegant yet relaxing family environment.
In recent years, the Williamsburg community in Brooklyn, NY, has transformed from a busy industrial area to an up-and-coming, chic place to live. Situated along the Hudson River, the city streets are lined with galleries, restaurants, boutiques and high-rise apartments - including Schaefer Landing, which sits on the original site of the Schaefer Brewing Co. plant. And to add a hint of urban sophistication to the lobby design of the residential complex, a colorful wall and floor mural was made from slate.
It is John Murray’s forward thinking that has led him to build a flourishing stone fabrication business. In less than 10 years, his company, Counter Intelligence, Inc. of Silver Spring, MD, has expanded from 20 employees to 240. It has also outgrown its 35,000-square-foot shop, and as a result, will be moving to a nearby 70,000-square-foot facility before the end of the year. Additionally, the company has recently opened three satellite locations to ensure that it produces high-quality and prompt service to its customers.
In operation for nearly 20 years, RMG Stone Products, Inc. of Castleton, VT, recently expanded the scope of its business with the addition of several slate quarries. The company, which until last year bought its material from local distributors, realized that there was a market for slate countertops as well as landscape stone and roofing tile.
Like other quarried stones, porphyry has its own unique characteristics which makes it distinctive. Historical use of the material has been noted as far back as approximately 3,000 years, when Egyptians and Romans considered it to be good luck. At that time, the word “porfirogenito” - meaning “born in a room cladded with porphyry” - was created. The same good luck that was hoped for at birth was also wished for Emperors at their death, and so they were buried in tombs made of porphyry. Nowadays, porphyry is being used for exterior and some interior applications, and companies such as Odorizzi Porfidi of Albiano, Italy, are quarrying and processing the material to markets around the world, including the U.S.
CarraraMarmotec is scheduled to take place from May 30 to June 2, 2007, in Carrara, Italy. This past year, CarraraFiere, the show’s organizer, launched a worldwide promotional campaign to attract more visitors and exhibitors to the upcoming exhibition. And judging by this year’s number of registrations, it is expected that CarraraMarmotec 2007 will improve upon the results of the 2006 edition, according to the show’s organizer.
Alfonso Bertoni migrated to the U.S. in 1984, and since that time, he has worked to build a strong fabrication operation. Originally from Bergamo, Italy, Bertoni understands the correlation between top-of-the-line machinery and high-quality products. Keeping this philosophy in mind, he has equipped his shop in Fair Lawn, NJ, with a variety of Italian-made machinery that is a key component to his business, which continually produces a high volume of commercial work.