Marble counter substitutes..

Gidge816February 19, 2014

My boyfriend and I are first time homeowners and have bought a fixer-upper that needs a totally new kitchen. I have chosen a light grey cabinet and plan on a whitish black splash and I think marble goes beautifully with both. I hear so many marble horror stories and I cook A LOT and to be honest the marks and stains would bother me and I would probably become a slave to keeping the countertop pristine (which I hear is impossible) What is a great substitute? So far I've seen Silestone lagoon and like it but can anyone recommend another close second to marble? Can someone with marble or a marble substitute share their experience? Pictures would be greatly appreciated since I haven't found much..

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spartans99

We have been looking for something similar as well. Check out this link. It has the best summary on all the options out there. *Well, there are probably more options, but I found this pretty comprehensive! Once I saw this, I then did tons of searches for those colors on Houzz and here on GW and also seeing them in person at a stone yard on a large slab really helps.

Here is a link that might be useful: White marble alternatives..

    Bookmark   February 19, 2014 at 7:32PM
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Trebruchet

You owe it to yourself to check out Corian and other solid surface materials. They outperform natural stone easily.

    Bookmark   February 20, 2014 at 9:39AM
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Mags438

Thanks for posting that link. I'm about ready to give up on marble stone look a like. The link showed me to seriously consider manmade. Thanks again

    Bookmark   February 20, 2014 at 11:17AM
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cindallas

I just saw a new KBIS 2014 report on the newly available huge slab sized white marble looking material that is actually like a porcelain tile. This new size is aprox 10 x 5 feet (3200mm x 1500mm) and close to a standard 2cm thickness. This is the same company that I think several GW's reported using (for bathroom tiles) instead of natural marble with glowing reports. They made several sizes including large format tiles (aprox 18x24, 9x12, 4x6) and this looks equal to a full slab size that has the properties of porcelain but the look of marble. Have not seen it in person but worth checking out. It is called Classtone by Neolith and I have a link below of the KBIS introduction.

Unless you have alteady done so, you might also check out some white granites or natural stone quartzites (not to be confused with the man made quartz). Be sure to look up the GW posts about Rocks, Quartzites and other Rocks in the Kitchen, Parts 1 - 4, for great info in general and how to test individual slabs you are interested in for durability for etching, hardness, stain ability, etc. One thing that has come across in those threads is that all natural stones are NOT the same and just the names and categories can't always be accurate. So you have to test to be sure.

Or maybe some of the solid surface synthetics will work for you. Always good to have choices! Hope this helps. Let us know of your progress.

Here is a link that might be useful: Porcelain slab sized marble look alike

    Bookmark   February 22, 2014 at 9:23AM
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cindallas

Did you see this recent post? It has pictures of these new porcelain slab look alike white marble with pictures ...

Here is a link that might be useful: Other GW post about this

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 3:25AM
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cani123

I was so excited reading about this because I thought I could use it as the backsplash behind the range, but at those prices I couldn't afford to buy a whole slab.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 5:02AM
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carree

It wasn't inexpensive, but the quartzite options can be very pretty and light. I went with Taj Mahal which wasn't as white as my husband wanted originally but living with it has been so very easy. And I am a messy cook, though even now I avoided setting down a messy bottle of olive oil where rings will sit for extended periods. Instead I just place it on a saucer. I'm very curious about the porcelain slabs. Will they be super durable?

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 3:05PM
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magsnj

I have to say.... I've always thought if I couldn't tolerate marble I wouldn't find something similar to it b/c honestly there is no "substitute". There's something about marble that nothing else can capture. That said, I would try to focus on embracing a different stone instead. I'm a marble person...... nothing else will do...... however, I've been in people's homes that have granite and have been able to think it's very very pretty..... not for me, but very pretty.

Actually, Pietra Cardoso is a fantastic countertop.... when you see it, it actually has an essence of marble (it's quarried very close to where carrara marble is quarried, so they could be cousins :) ), however, it's a dark color and looks more like a slate or soapstone (but you'd know the difference when you saw it). I believe it's a schist (I could be wrong) so you'd still want to be careful with acids.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 3:29PM
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strayerdarb

Try a manmade quarts counter like ceasarstone or a quartzite, which is a natural stone, in a light color such as white macaubus or calcutta.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 9:43PM
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brantley_r

We just finished up a new build and used honed Carrara marble. I knew I wanted marble and searched high and low for a substitute. The only acceptable substitute I could find was a quartzite called Sea Pearl and it was almost double the price. Also looked at White Macabas which was significantly more. We have been in our new house for over 2 months...still tying up some loose ends like our kitchen backsplash, etc... but after living with the marble I have to say I love it and am SO GLAD I went with what I wanted. It is so beautiful. We are red wine drinkers, coffee drinkers, cook spaghetti. Not to mention I have three messy sons. :-) We purchased a 15-year stain warranty for $200 (Dry Treat) which treated our kitchen counters, powder room (polished Carrara) and master bath (polished Cappucino marble). If it stains after 15 years it will be time for a remodel anyway. So far it has not stained or etched.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 2:32PM
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Lily Spider

Brantley, I am in the middle of this same dilemma. However I am considering the quartzite white fantasy which can act like marble sometimes. In all of my reading on GW I haven't heard anyone mention the service (Dry Treat) $200 for a 15 year warranty? Sounds too good to be true. Was it a sealer? And did it change the look of the marble? I have heard some of the sealers make marble look like plastic? Wondering how you are feeling after a year?

Thanks!

    Bookmark   February 15, 2015 at 11:08AM
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nmjen

I love marble, but after having it in our bathroom for the past several years, I knew that it wasn't suited for my messy ways (this was confirmed after I made a red velvet wedding cake this fall, spattering the island with red food coloring).

We went for Silestone Lagoon instead of marble for my island. It cleans up well and looks pretty marble-like from a distance. Overall, I'm happy with it, but up close, I have found myself wondering if I would have been happier if I'd gone with a natural stone instead (like a quartzite) because the Silestone lacks the dynamism and the warmth of natural stone.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2015 at 4:25PM
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