Aussies have well and truly discovered the beauty and durability of natural stone and it’s now being seen everywhere from the bathroom to the balcony. But with so many options on the market, the process of choosing the right stone for your home can be a little daunting.
So we have founder and owner of Prestige Surfaces, Matt Nash, here to advise. Being raised to appreciate the care required in cleaning natural and manmade surfaces by his father and grandfather — each of whom had small cleaning businesses — in 2010, he decided to open up his own company. Specialising in cleaning, sealing and protecting precious stone materials, Prestige Surfaces have a range of high-profile clients including chef Shannon Bennett from Vue de Monde, and The Block.
Below are Matt’s top five stone options for the home:
- BLUESTONE (BASALT)
Commonly found in facades and flooring, bluestone is one of Australia’s most popular choices. Once treated with premium grade breathable sealants, bluestone is elegant, durable, timeless and easy to clean. Always choose a sawn cut bluestone for external flooring and honed or polished for internal use. Never use sealants that claim to darken the colour because these products can cause irreversible damage to the stone.
A form of limestone, travertine is a natural, earthy stone, popular in paving or indoor flooring for its light colour and motley texture. Available in a variety of finishes, travertine is relatively easy to maintain after it has been treated with premium grade breathable sealants. Travertine will not usually withstand acids so may mark slightly if it is used in areas where food and beverages are prepared or consumed. Travertine is becoming increasingly popular in modern bathrooms.
Many luxury homes include stunning marble features such as benches, bathrooms or flooring. Marble is not resistant to acids so yearly maintenance will ensure your marble surface has adequate protection.
Best used for outdoor paving, granite is very hard-wearing and resistant to salt so is perfect for pool paving and coastal properties. Flamed granite is particularly popular outdoors. Inside, honed or polished granite can often be found in bench tops.
A soft, sedimentary rock, sandstone is not resistant to salts and will cause it to break down. Quality sealants penetrate deep within the material and completely inhibit corrosion, so correctly treated, sandstone can be used around swimming pools and in coastal areas. Sandstone can be difficult to clean when used inside so is best used for outdoor paving and facades.
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