Once again, members from both the stone and tile sectors gathered together to share their latest product introductions at Coverings, the largest U.S. stone and tile exhibition. This year’s event was held from Tuesday, April 27 to Friday, April 30, at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, FL.
Stationed throughout the show floor were pavilions representing various countries such as Brazil, China, India, Italy and Spain as well as the U.S. Each group of manufacturers impressed attendees with an assortment of new stone and tile collections, which contained a variety of sizes, textures and colors.
In the tile industry, it is evident that advances in digital technology have come a long way. Porcelain tile lines made to resemble the appearance of stone and wood have become much more authentic. The veining and grain of these types of tile are defined, and patterns on each tile are not replicated - as is true with natural materials.
On the stone side, exotic material from faraway places in Brazil and India were prevalent on the exhibition floor as well as numerous types of granite and marble from all around the world. Stone tiles are now being offered in larger formats for floor and wall applications and an array of decorative and trim pieces are also widely available.
A particular note of interest when walking the show hall was the extensive amount of “green” products. Many tile products are now being made with a large percentage of recycled content, and certain stone materials have received Greenguard Certification. Moreover, manufacturers of installation and maintenance products are also making a conscious effort to develop products that are environmentally friendly. Below is just a sampling of the numerous product lines that were introduced at Coverings 2010:
A. The Bioessenze collection by Lea Ceramiche - designed to resemble the appearance of natural wood - is the result of the use of full HD technology that combines the best of technological research in ceramic decoration with the know-how developed by the company over the years. While the tile has the look and texture of natural wood, it has the durability of porcelain stoneware. The Bioessenze collection offers five different colors - each in different sizes, including Bianco in 6- x 48-inch format (pictured).