Celebrating its 26th year, Cevisama, the International Ceramic Tile and Bath Furnishings show, was held from February 5 to 9 in Valencia, Spain. And in keeping with tradition, the 2008 edition was a showcase of new and innovative product lines -- particularly in the ceramic tile sector. In total, 150 of the exhibitors were Tile of Spain's branded manufacturers, who belong to the Spanish Ceramic Tile Manufacturer's Association (ASCER).

"Subdued" and "sophisticated" are two words to describe the tile collections on display at this year's event. Metallic tiles were prominent on the show floor, and presented as bigger and bolder. Many of the metallic collections are now available in larger formats and muted textures -- making them ideal for flooring in large commercial applications as well as contemporary-style living spaces.

And in general, large formats were popular at Cevisama 2008. Whether they were porcelain pieces made to resemble natural stone, wood or fabric, tile collections have dramatically expanded their range of sizes. Moreover, large formats are no longer just for floors. The latest displays illustrated how large plank-sized pieces -- positioned either horizontally or vertically -- can create unique wall designs.

Another noticeable trend at this year's exhibition were tufted tiles made to look like sofa cushions. With advances in technology, tile manufacturers have really refined finishes that capture the essence of materials such as fine leather or smooth satin.

Below are just some of the numerous new product lines that were showcased at Cevisama 2008:

Natucer's new floor tile collection

Natucer introduced its new floor tile collection, Laguna, at this year's exhibition. The collection features extruded porcelain tile in 14- x 21-inch pieces, and the tiles are available in four colors.

Tempo series by Roca

The Tempo series by Roca offers a large, elegant, panoramic format that can be used to enhance any wall. The tile is available in 30 x 90 cm, and various colors and textures -- from basic white to metallic finishes and baroque designs. Tile in the Tempo series stands up well to traffic and is ideal for use in exteriors and low-maintenance areas, according to the manufacturer.

Ceracasa's EmotileTM series

Ceracasa's EmotileTM series applies the latest digital printing technologies by using precise inkjet design and decoration on the surface of the tiles. Their technology can decorate more than eight square meters of graphics without requiring the edges of the tile to be rectified, according to the company. One of the most recent images to be introduced in the collection is a white tufted Chesterfield sofa pillow. Finishes range in texture from matte, anti-slip, satin and polished. Large format is available in 19 1/3 x 19 1/3 inches as well as in 19- x 19-inch rectified tiles. Additionally, EmotileTM is offered in various other sizes.

Tau Cerámica's Civis' Agora Collection

Tau Cerámica has started working specifically on developing ceramic products designed to be technically suitable for new urban development applications. Among its new products that have been specifically developed to meet these objectives is the Civis' Agora Collection -- designed exclusively for outdoor uses. According to Tau, this collection offers the highest level of technical performance currently available from ceramics on the market for outdoor urban spaces. It has been exclusively in line with ergonomic, accessibility and Universal Design criteria, which offer users values such as maximum safety and comfort, stated the manufacturer.

Art-Tile series from Azuvi

With its Art-Tile series, Azuvi brings a new style and design to floor tile. These through-body porcelain tiles have a metal finish in gloss or matte, and are offered in three shades -- black, gold and white. It is available in only 44 x 63 cm -- responding to the growing market demand for large formats, according to Azuvi.

Apavisa's Patina Collection

Apavisa has used the evolutionary stages of natural copper to develop the Patina Collection. The tiles in this collection are full-body technical porcelain that do not need maintenance, according to the company. They are ideal for floors and walls as well as being suitable for both interior and exterior applications. The tiles have a high-blending resistance (61 N/mm2), resistance to frost, chemicals, stains and thermal shock, and they have a totally void conductivity index, reports Apavisa.

Inalco's Royal series

Inalco offers the Royal series, which features patterned organic shapes that bring texture and dimension to wall designs. The Royal series is available in shades of Garden (Loden) and Ascot (Beige) in an 18- x 36-inch format.

Porcelanosa's Venecia series

Due to the advances in digital printing, Porcelanosa offers the Venecia series, which is a sophisticated collection of ceramic tile that resembles the look of vintage wallpaper. Ornate in design, this aquamarine background plays seamlessly with the gilded brocade pattern to create a simply gorgeous ceramic tile that is an easy option for a petite powder room, according to the manufacturer. The tile is available in a 17- x 26-inch format.

Tisca hand-made ceramics

Tisca, a family-owned and operated Spanish tile company, specializes in hand-made ceramics. The tiles are rustic yet elegant and can bring an Old World charm to a space. Since most of the tiles are custom-made, they vary in size and shape -- making for an authentic design.

Signes series by Ceramicas Diago

The Signes series, which was recently introduced by Ceramicas Diago, includes state-of-the-art metallic flooring with a porcelain ceramic base and a finish that is similar to the prints used in the textile industry.

Maderas collection from Alcalagres

The Maderas collection of wood-effect integral porcelain tiles from Alcalagres features five different models, including Arce, Haya (pictured), Roble Claro, Boble Oscuro and Wengué. The tiles are available in a 6- x 24- or 12- x 24-inch format, and the collection is rounded off with a variety of trims that complement all the models. Maderas can be used in areas where traditional wood flooring is not suitable, due to their locations, use, high traffic or maintenance problems, reports the company.

Viva's Black Flower series

Viva's Black Flower series, created in collaboration with Patrizia Moroso, the creative director of Moroso, and photographer Massimo Gardone, depicts black and white photographic roses in full bloom. These designs add striking dimension to any installation. This mixing of media, an exchange between photography and industrial production, is a new and exciting path for the tile industry, the company reports.