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We had the privilege of sitting down with Leonora Tregembe, Director of Surface Spectrum, to discuss the merits of natural stone as an exceptional choice for enhancing new home builds.

With her wealth of expertise, Leonora provides valuable insights on its advantages, applications, maintenance, and beyond. Through her eyes, we gain a deeper understanding of the enduring charm and unparalleled adaptability of this remarkable building material, particularly in the realm of luxury spaces. See her answers below.

What are the benefits of choosing a natural stone bench top?

Natural stone is beautiful material, nothing quite compares to its aesthetic appeal. It is truly unique which creates a beautiful individual look. It will also increase the value of your home, making it a great investment. There is a large range of natural stone options, so you can be sure to find one that suits your style as well as budget.

All bench top materials, whether natural or man made have their pros & cons, nothing is bullet proof, however natural stone overall is a durable material. It will age beautifully and gracefully, providing years of use and enjoyment. Natural stone can also be restored after years of it being installed, it can be re-honing, resealed and repaired to bring the stone to its original glory or otherwise you can simply let the stone age naturally.

What types of natural stone do you supply and the differences between them?

We typically supply the following types of natural stone; Granite, Marble, Dolomite, Quartzite, Limestone, Bluestone, Travertine and Onyx each having their own unique characteristics whether it comes to appearance or performance, for example granites are a dense stone with more of a granular structure, whereas marbles are more so known for their veining. Then there are quartzites which have more of a crystalline appearance, onyx which is translucent and can be back lit and travertine which is made up of a honeycomb appearance which give it such an earthy, rustic feel. There is a look and colour for every design intent.

Where throughout the home can someone use natural stone when designing and building their custom home?

Previously we would see natural stone mainly used to kitchen, bathroom & laundry bench tops however nowadays there are many more applications we are seeing that add a real beauty and luxury to a project – areas such as bathroom walls, rangehood cladding, fireplaces, TV units, draw fronts, bath hobs and just some of the clever ways stone is being incorporated into a design. I personally love the use of stone for creating integrated sink as it creates the most beautiful, seamless look between the bench top and sink.

How do you work with a builder in sourcing, selecting and designing natural stone bench tops for a custom home?

Selecting stone can sometimes feel like an overwhelming process however we are here to guide our clients each step of the way. We provide a hands-on, one-on-one service to guide our clients on what would best suit the style, budget and lifestyle of the client. We also offer our clients mini design consults to help see all the finishes come together with the stone.

What are your top tips in relation to maintaining a natural stone bench top to ensure longevity?

Natural stone is very easy to care for. Once properly sealed, general cleaning of natural stone should be with a clean, soft cloth and fresh warm water. You can also wash your natural stone surfaces with warm water and a mild neutral detergent which should remove any dirt or residue which may have become ingrained.

Stone is sensitive to acids, so avoid placing citrus fruits, vinegar, or acidic cleaners directly on the surface. Wipe up spills promptly. Use trivets or hot pads to protect the stone from hot cookware. Extreme temperature changes can lead to cracks. Place cutting boards or mats under heavy or sharp objects to prevent scratches.

By following these tips, you can ensure that your natural stone stays beautiful for many years to come.

At RODA, we’ve gathered the very best range of products and materials on the market and made them available for you to explore and consider at ease. To get started on your project, contact us today.

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