kitchen countertop, marble or quartzite, first world problems

womanonthevergeSeptember 19, 2012

This is my first time to the Gardenweb well of knowledge since The Big Big Remodel started on May 1. I love love my general contractor, Silverado, Inc., in Salt Lake City, three thumbs up, so I have that going for me. I work more than full-time and am the single parent of four (by choice, not complaining) and I don't have any time to run around and look at stuff, so mostly I just shoot from the hip on finish decisions and order a lot of things on line. My Amazon account is getting a thorough workout.

Now I'm faced with the big countertop investment and need to try harder. The house interior will be transitional, not really modern, but the bathrooms especially are fairly contemporary. I couldn�t enlarge the kitchen, so it is galley style, one slab of stone should cover it all. I want a gray stone, and have narrowed my choice down to the lovely slab of Palisandro Nuvolato marble or Super White quartzite (there were 15 slabs, so I didn�t make them move them, I know one will work).

The stone yard guy says not to worry, a honed finish on the marble will avoid etching problems and reasonable care will avoid stains. My fabricator has Super White in his home with a polished finish and he says he has had no etching problems. Of course, the fabricator wants to avoid any future performance issues and is pushing me toward Silestone, which is lovely, but I want a natural stone in the kitchen (Vitrazzo Cubist recycled glass in master bath and Quartz Reflections Ceasarstone in two smaller bathrooms/laundry room).

The stone yard guy is trying to get me a piece of honed Palisandro from a Sun Valley, Idaho, installation so I can go crazy and try to stain/etch it. I have a little time before it absolutely has to be installed.

My question is: am I crazy to even consider a soft marble in high traffic kitchen? TIA with my first world problems.

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Welcome to the world of GW TKO!

I can't tell you if you're crazy or not, LOL, but OMG is that stone gorgeous!

    Bookmark   September 19, 2012 at 3:31PM
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Whatever that slab is in your picture, get it. Just get it. It is drop dead gorgeous.

And I gotta love a stone guy who says you will be fine with honed marble. My kind of stone guy.

My SW is etching. It's something I'm trying to embrace. The only etchings that make me lose my mind are the rings from things. And some are too big to be glasses, so maybe plates? I don't know. The miscellaneous dark spots from splashes I'm over.

But, please, let us live vicariously through you and get that slab pictured.

And don't you dare leave GW without showing it installed!!!

oh yes, where are my manners?, of course, welcome aboard!

    Bookmark   September 19, 2012 at 4:15PM
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I know right? It's so gorgeous and I'm stunned I can even find it in our lovely second-tier city. I thought it would be a big city kind of stone. It has sparkles in it too. A FB friend mentioned that a honed finish might look kind of lifeless and I should shoot for a polished finish and just accept the etching and embrace the lived in look. I have to agree that I would rather have a few etches on a lively finish than a lifeless finsih without etches. I'm leaning toward the marble, WTH, it's only money, but only if one slab can cover the whole kitchen and no worries, if it looks as good as I think it will, I'll be posting dozens of pictures.

    Bookmark   September 19, 2012 at 4:56PM
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WOW - that slab is gorgeous!!! Get it! I agree with beekeeperswife! My Moon Night (aka Super White) has never stained but has etched - but because it's honed no one can tell but me, and that's only a certain angle in a certain light. I have three kids too that give it a good beating (3, 5, and a 12 year old)

    Bookmark   September 19, 2012 at 5:09PM
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That is one of the most beautiful slabs I've ever seen. I would get it in a heartbeat!

    Bookmark   September 19, 2012 at 6:00PM
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It reminds me of a wintry sky. Really pretty!

Oh yes, welcome!

    Bookmark   September 19, 2012 at 6:15PM
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I've had my super white in my kitchen for over a year and a half, and I can tell you that it does etch and dull here and there. But if you're willing to keep it clean and use a nice stone polish on it every week or so, it'll keep looking great. It is not by any means bulletproof though so be sure to wipe up spills and things sitting on the counter for more than a few hours.

    Bookmark   September 19, 2012 at 6:30PM
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I agree with jgopp on the super white. Ours has a few minor etch spots that no one would ever notice unless I pointed them out. It does scratch relatively easily, but in our kitchen at least it's many tiny scratches which are giving it more of the lived-in patina without detracting from its beauty. It hasn't stained from anything, including oil, and it only etches if something is left sitting on it for a while. Lemon juice takes a few minutes to etch. Tomato sauce seems to just dry on the surface without etching it at all.

Every time I walk in my kitchen I smile at my counters because I think they're so beautiful. Get something that will make you smile when you see it.

    Bookmark   September 19, 2012 at 7:10PM
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Welcome! Love the slab but I love your username even more. So appropriate for GW as you will discover!

    Bookmark   September 19, 2012 at 9:26PM
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I love that slab and would grab it in a second - faster than a second if it is quartzite.

I have marble (montclair danby) and had "Granite Shield" sealant put on it. It was sprayed on and did not change the texture of the stone. It is supposed to be a lifetime sealant. Today I canned 24 jars of tomatoes. My friend helped me and she was slopping cooked tomatoes all over the place. Not one stain and very little if any etching (the Danby seems a little harder than the european marbles).

My only problem with the marble is around the sink. You have to be careful not to bang heavy pots into it or it will ding. I never had this problem with my AB granite. And Quartzite is supposed to be hard like granite. If you go with a marble which is softer, I would suggest a farmhouse style sink.

    Bookmark   September 19, 2012 at 9:40PM
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