Porcelain tile has numerous wellness design benefits, and will be a featured material at the annual Coverings expo opening tomorrow in Orlando (and online for those not traveling there).
Coverings bills itself as the largest tile and stone products trade show in North America and is jointly sponsored by the ceramics industry associations of North America, Spain and Italy. Much of the innovation in the porcelain category emerges from these three regions, and designers, builders, remodelers and installers attend their U.S. event to discover the latest in technology and styles.
Wellness Benefits of Porcelain
Before looking at what’s debuting this week, it’s worth taking a quick look at the wellness design benefits of porcelain. This versatile material fits easily into all five facets of wellness design:
- Health & Fitness – This largely nonporous material keeps germs from penetrating into a countertop surface, keeping kitchen work tops more hygienic. Some even offer added antibacterial and antiviral technology for added protection.
- Safety & Security – In addition to the health benefit noted above, porcelain tile can be formulated in slip-resistant finishes that reduce the chances of falling in a wet environment like a full bath or an uncovered outdoor living area.
- Accessibility – Thin porcelain flooring is often used on both sides of patio doors and shower entrances to create wheelchair-friendly access.
- Functionality – Porcelain’s durability and low maintenance make it an ideal surface for most kitchens, bathrooms and outdoor living areas in busy homes.
- Comfort & Joy – Porcelain can be manufactured to look like the finest marble, deepest forest or most fabulous contemporary graphics, depending on personal preferences. It can even be customized with a homeowner’s own artwork or images. There are very few materials that can compare for creative flexibility, and none leap to mind that combine that benefit with durability and low maintenance.
Notable Coverings 2021 Introductions
The pandemic has made homeowners more health-conscious than ever, so antiviral and antibacterial technology added to Realonda’s Venato series (and other brands’ offerings) is likely to be a welcome addition to the trade show.
This type of attribute started emerging during the global COVID outbreak as manufacturers in Europe especially started to address it in their factories. It wouldn’t be surprising to see it become a standard feature in the next six to 12 months.
The larger the tile, the less grout one needs to maintain in a space. Nuovocorso’s Big Slabs introduce a massive 64 by 64-inch square slab designed for outdoor flooring. That’s a highly functional addition to the category.
On the comfort and joy front, those who crave glitz with their neutrals might appreciate one new line from Anthology Tile is blending neutrals with metallic accents.
If you’d like to attend Coverings without traveling to Orlando, you can do so via the show’s website and Zoom. There will be continuing education sessions on sustainability and wellness, product testing and global style trends.