Minnesota Tile & Stone Debuts Custom Design Studio Created Specifically for Designers, Contractors and Homeowners

To remodel a kitchen or bathroom, a designer or homeowner could spend countless hours driving to tile stores, scouring natural stone wholesalers and cultured stone retailers, schlepping samples from store to store before finally selecting the perfect tile or stone, and overseeing stone counter fabrication. On Monday, April 2, 2012, Minnesota Tile & Stone (MTS) will open the doors to its new 40,000-square-foot facility in Minnetonka that is simplifying this lengthy and tedious material selection process of remodeling and home building. MTS is creating from scratch a huge new studio that houses numerous time-consuming steps under one roof, changing how homeowners shop and how designers work with their clients.

The unique company distinguishes itself as the only business in the upper Midwest open not only to industry professionals but to the public at large that sells both ceramic and stone tiles, natural stone slabs, and cultured stone veneers and that also fabricates natural stone countertops in its own facilities, providing a single-source solution for floors, walls, back splashes, and countertops. The result is a new trend in material selection: one-stop shopping that saves time and creates a design process that is easy, efficient and fun.

Owner Alan Dale today heads a company that 80 years ago was started by his grandfather, then run by his father. Deeply proud of his family business, Dale’s vision was to create a state-of-the-art experience and total solution for designers.

In spite of an economy that for several years has not been kind to the construction industry, Dale has taken on a number of courageous, if not risky, steps to continue to build and grow his company. He believed that when the dark economy would begin to show signs of light, the construction forecast would also begin to turn around. And he banked on it.

In 2010, Dale purchased well-known stone manufacturer Pollux. This past year, when investing in new property was risky, Dale purchased the building previously leased by Rubble Tile, located on the current site of MTS’s new studio in Minnetonka (6001 Culligan Way, just off Hwy. 62 and I-494). His vision was to design and open a one-of-a-kind tile and stone retail and fabrication facility complete with the most advanced state-of-the-art stone counter fabrication equipment, and that’s precisely what he’s done.

With everything on the line, Dale says he is “all in,” pumping a whopping $7 million into the family business. The total investment includes purchasing and rebuilding the new Minnetonka facility (designed by Tanek Inc. of Minneapolis and constructed by RJ Ryan of Mendota Heights, Minn.); purchasing new high-tech, digital manufacturing equipment; the acquisition of Pollux; and building MTS’s Plymouth showroom, which opened a year ago. All of his strategic investments, detailed preparation and enormous risks are positioning Dale and his newly branded company to capitalize on the marketplace when the recession eases. And Dale believes that time is now. In fact, Minnesota and national reports indicate that more Americans are investing in renovating and remodeling their homes. Dale fully expects his new model to be the studio of choice for designers and homeowners.

“Designers and contractors today are running all over town – often times with their clients in tow – perusing, selecting and reselecting tile and stone,” said Dale. “Now, they can come into a fashionable studio with their clients to meet and to shop for all their materials and literally watch their granite countertops being made. This simply isn’t done anywhere else, and it’s saving everyone a lot of time, something none of us have enough of.”

Designers and homeowners together can make any number of creative decisions. Then they can meet in expansive, private meeting rooms to layout products, materials and plans, and together go over all the details. No more driving to numerous locations to check out tile and stone, then attend numerous meetings to make decisions. Dale emphasizes that his studio concept that includes private conference rooms are not to be taken for granted. He hears over and over again how many designers do not have an adequate location to meet their clients during the entire selection process.

Alethea Sadowski, a Twin Cities designer with A. Sadowski Designs, concurs. Like many other designers, Sadowski does not have a convenient space to meet with clients.

“I love the new studio setup,” Sadowski said. “With the stone slab selection and the latest tile trends all accessible within the same area as well as the convenient meeting space, it’s like an extension of my office. I can bring a client in and manage a complete tile and stone project from start to finish in one visit.”

From porcelain to glass, and from mosaics to marble, all of MTS’s showrooms are stocked with and sourced from the most trusted manufacturers in the world. The studio carries more than 30 types of tile and more than 120 different marble, granite and quartz slabs. Customers also enjoy the ability to watch the stone fabrication process through a large viewing area. Stone countertops are measured, created and installed by employees to ensure exceptionally high quality installation. And, MTS partners with industry-leading setting materials companies to provide quality installation material and maintenance products.

Headquartered in Minnetonka, Minn., Minnesota Tile & Stone (www.MNTile.com ) is a privately held, employee-owned provider and manufacturer of quality tile and stone. Founded in 1930, the fourth-generation business has four Minnesota retail locations: Lakeville, Woodbury, Plymouth and Minnetonka, its flagship studio and manufacturing facility.

MAPEI Celebrates 75th Anniversary in 2012

Over the past 75 years, MAPEI has grown from a 3-man start-up company that manufactured paints and coatings for commercial buildings in Milan, Italy, to the Mapei Group that has opened manufacturing facilities, distribution centers and commercial offices around the globe and employs 7500 people. The product offering has expanded from a few simple products to the innovative development of more than 1400 adhesives, sealants and chemical products for the building industry.

MAPEI will enthusiastically celebrate its 75th anniversary,” said Luigi Di Geso, President and CEO of MAPEI Americas, “but we will not spend excessive time looking back at where we have come from. We are strongly focused on where we want to go in the future, as evidenced by our growth in the Americas. Over the next 3-5 years we will be expanding capacity in our manufacturing plants, enlarging and adding to our product lines, and increasing our presence in Latin America.” The company’s ambitious goals are based on the strength of corporate management and the MAPEI Leadership Team, who have delivered growth and profits throughout the recent economic recession.

The sound foundation of the Mapei Group has evolved through the administrative expertise and excellent business judgment of Dr. Giorgio Squinzi, son of company founder Rodolfo Squinzi. This private corporation produces in excess of $2 billion in annual revenues. While early and consistent growth derived from flooring installation systems, today MAPEI has expanded into a solid position in the concrete restoration category as well. Development will continue in this area as the company begins its next phase of growth in the Americas. Di Geso invites contractors and distributors to “Work with MAPEI – work with the best!”

About MAPEI

MAPEI Group, with 67 subsidiaries including 58 plants in 27 countries, is today the world leader in the manufacturing of adhesives and complementary products for the installation of all types of floor and wall coverings. The company also specializes in manufacturing other chemical products for building, including waterproofing products, special mortars and admixtures for concrete, products for the restoration of ancient buildings, and special decorative and protective coatings for walls.

Eighteen MAPEI manufacturing facilities are located in the Americas, with headquarters in Deerfield Beach, Florida. MAPEI is an environmentally conscious manufacturer – the company has been a member of the U.S. Green Building Council since 2001 and a member of the Canadian Green Building Council since 2008. MAPEI Americas is a registered provider to the AIA/CES program and also offers training related to ceramic and stone tile, floor coverings and concrete repair through the MAPEI Technical Institute. The Quality Management Systems of the majority of MAPEI Americas facilities are ISO 9001 certified. Visit www.mapei.com for technical data or call 1-800-42-MAPEI (1-800-426-2734) for the nearest location

TILE REDI® Appoints Steven Desher as Regional Sales Manager

Steven Desher - Regional Sales Manager for Tile RediTile Redi®, world-leading manufacturer and marketer of pre-formed, one-piece, innovative, Tile Ready® shower products, has appointed Steven Desher to the position of Regional Sales Manager. Desher has been appointed to handle commercial jobs which include hospitality, health care facilities, senior living and dormitories for Tile Redi’s patented line of leak-proof, shower pans and related items. He will be working out of the company’s Coral Springs headquarters.

Desher has previously sold to distributors and contractors and feels that his experience selling to consumers is going to help him in his new position at Tile Red®i, “I am excited about selling a unique product, that is not a ‘me too’ product,” says Desher.

Desher sees being awarded the RSM position is a great opportunity, however does not intend to be content with resting on his laurels, “My goal is to exceed the sales goals Tile Redi has set for me.”

Tile Redi’s® patented and UL-listed shower pans and other innovative tile ready products are manufactured as pre-formed, one-piece shower modules. Complete with fully integrated drains, curbs and splash walls, each leak-proof and mold free unit is pre-pitched for easy drainage and immediately ready for tile. By solving water intrusion problems, Tile Redi® shower pans inhibit the growth of mold and mildew. For more information, please contact: Tile Redi®, 4450 NW 126th Avenue, Suite 101, Coral Springs, FL 33065. Call 800-232-6156. www.tileredi.com

Danny Catania of Miller Druck Specialty Contracting Company Wins The 2011 MIA Craftsman of The Year Award

2011 MIA President GK Naquin (right) Presents the MIA Craftsman of the Year Award to Danny Catania (left).

The Marble Institute of America, Inc. (MIA) is proud to announce that Danny Catania of Miller Druck Specialty Contracting Co. in New York, NY, as the 2011 recipient of the MIA Natural Stone Craftsman of the Year Award.

A six member panel of stone industry veterans selected Catania from a pool of nominees in a competition sponsored by the leading industry supplier, Campolonghi Italia. The award, a beautifully crafted and unique plaque, was presented to Catania at the annual MIA Awards Luncheon held during StonExpo/Marmomacc Americas 2012.

Danny Catania began his career shortly after graduating from college in 1978. Not sure what he wanted to do, his uncle who happened to be in the stone business, asked him if he wanted a job. He began as a helper, then an apprentice setter; but his capability and diversity of skills soon advanced him to full mechanic and eventually to the top tradesperson.

Barbara Cohen, president of Miller Druck Specialty Contracting said, “Danny has worked worldwide and is creative in solving every installation detail; always able to adapt to the local requirements and availability of tools and equipment. He thinks ahead to solve fabrication and installation details for a long term solution. He uses his vast experience to rig equipment safely, and gently handles marble and stone, and always finds the most economical, practical and appropriate detail to insure the integrity of the architect’s design.”

When Miller Druck Specialty Contracting Company was awarded the Canary Wharf Project in London, it was intended that local labor would be used. However, as the job began, it became apparent that the skill for the type of quality and precision demanded was not available in the local market place. Danny traveled on a moment’s notice to London where he became the master mechanic and was known as the “stone king” for the entire Canary Wharf Commercial Center. He immediately developed a rapport with all the existing contractors, taught all their workers how to properly set stone, guided them on how to read the drawings, and ended up building a team of 200 workers to complete the entire project. Danny stayed in London for over 5 years and was cherished by the guys he taught and led. Those workers, now stone trades people, had acquired a trade for life because of Danny.

As he traveled to many different locales, he always sought out the personal talent in each of the workers whether it be as expert mechanic, a helper, the forklift driver or the person to mix the sand and cement. He treated each and every one equally with respect, recognizing and appreciating the contribution that each person made to the team. “Danny has this amazing ability to get along with everybody and to make them feel part of his team, no matter where they come from because he has the basic respect of talent,” Cohen said. She continued, “Besides his accomplishments, Danny is hardworking, sincere, dedicated, honest, straightforward, witty, clever and a kind human being.”

When he is not working on natural stone projects around the world, Danny enjoys playing his guitar, which he inherited from his grandfather.

The Marble Institute of America salutes Danny Catania of Miller Druck Specialty Contracting Co. for winning this prestigious award.

About the Marble Institute of America

For over 65 years the Marble Institute of America (MIA) has been the world’s leading information resource and advocate for the natural dimension stone industry. MIA members include marble, granite, limestone, sandstone, and other natural stone producers and quarriers, fabricators, installers, distributors, and contractors around the world.

2012 Ceramics of Italy Tile Competition has been extended to February 27

Sponsored by the Italian Trade Commission and Confindustria Ceramica (the Association of Italian Ceramics), the 2012 Tile Competition is open to all North American architects and designers who have used Italian ceramic tiles in their institutional, residential or commercial/hospitality projects completed between January 2007 and January 2012. The competition is completely digital and FREE to enter! Winners in each category will receive a $4,000 cash prize + a five-day trip to Italy to attend Cersaie in the fall.
For competition guidelines, an archive of past winners and the online submission form visit www.tilecompetition.com

Three Concept Rooms Will Come to Life in the Installation Design Showcase at Coverings 2012

A trio of ingenious design ideas incorporating tile and stone will come to life before the eyes of Coverings 2012 attendees with the presentation of the Installation Design Showcase. The special combined live-action demonstration and exhibit underscores how critical skilled installation is to realizing any design project, and it has become a must-see of the international tile and stone expo, April 17-20, at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida. The construction gets underway a day prior to the opening of Coverings, with completion marked for Wednesday, April 18. However, the exhibit will remain in full view through the show’s close.

Matches have been made between three distinguished designers and three accomplished installation teams. Instrumental in making these marriages was The National Tile Contractors Association, a Coverings co-sponsor that helped originate the Showcase three years ago. To participate, installers must have NTCA Five Star Recognition, the association’s highest ranking. The collaborations between the professionals will yield an outdoor living area, a master bathroom and a hotel guestroom where tile and stone have star billing.

The Line-Up of Designers & Installers
Joan DesCombes, a nationally known kitchen designer who has her own practice in Winter Park, Florida, is among the highly touted talent in the Showcase. DesCombes is dreaming-up an outdoor living area that she describes as “a personal pamper patio—a tranquil retreat where one can escape, reflect and relax.” Cox Tile and Marble, of San Antonio, Texas, which has participated in the Installation Design Showcase since its inception, once again is assigning a team that will tackle this scenario.
Orlando native and president of Gribble Interior Group, Grant Gribble, ASID, IIDA, is also stepping into the Showcase spotlight. He is planning the “Mod Squad of master baths,” drawing inspiration from 1960s and 1970s fashion. Helping his retro vision evolve into an energetic yet elegant vignette is Collins Tile and Stone, Arlington, Virginia.

The acclaimed firm TVS Design, Atlanta, is sending senior associate Foreman Rogers, ASID, who has envisioned a “sophisticated and luxe” look for his hotel guestroom. It’s a space that aims to highlight tile as “much more than just a practical material but as a true art form.” David Allen Company, headquartered in Raleigh, North Carolina, will lead the installation on this project.

In addition to shining light on the participating designers and installers, the exhibit will illuminate some of the latest and greatest tile and stone products and essential installation elements from 2012 Coverings exhibitors, including Crossville, Ceramic Tiles of Italy, Florida Tile and Metropolitan Ceramics. What’s more, QEP, Rubi Tools USA and European Tile Masters Inc will provide the necessary tools to construct the exhibit, while H.B. Fuller Construction Products, Mapei and USG Corp will supply the basic building needs.

“The Installation Design Showcase exemplifies the true mission of Coverings: to bring all segments of the tile and stone industry together and amplify how these materials can transform both our living spaces and our world,” said Bart Bettiga, Executive Director of the National Tile Contractors Association. “The fact that the Showcase will be completed over the course of the show, right on the exhibit floor, offers attendees the opportunity to witness the process first-hand, and to interact directly with the designers and installers. It’s yet another example of the kind of innovative, value-added programming that makes Coverings such an incomparable experience.”

According to Bettiga, all of the materials and products featured in the Installation Design Showcase will have an after-life benefitting Tile Partners for Humanity.

Visit www.coverings.com or www.facebook.com/CoveringsShow.

About Coverings
Coverings is the premier international trade fair and expo dedicated exclusively to showcasing the newest in ceramic tile and natural stone. It has grown to be the largest and most important show of its kind in the U.S., featuring exhibitors from more than 50 countries and attracting thousands of distributors, retailers, fabricators, contractors and specifiers, architectural and design professionals, builders and real estate developers, plus the press and journalists who cover this vital and dynamic industry. Coverings is the stage for introducing some of the most innovative tile and stone products in the world. The exposition also serves as a valuable resource for continuing education for all categories of attendees, with informative, accredited seminars and live demonstration sessions conducted throughout the four days and all free of charge. Coverings 2012 is set for April 17-20, at Orange County Convention Center, Orlando, FL. For more information visit www.coverings.com or contact National Trade Productions, Coverings Show Management, 703-683-8500.

Recycling Effort Exceeds Expectations at SURFACES | StonExpo/Marmomacc Americas 2012

Being “green” is no longer a trend or fad – it’s a way of life. This was dramatically demonstrated last week at the recently completed SURFACES | StonExpo/Marmomacc Americas (S2). For the first time, S2 partnered with Mountain Re-Source Center and Tile Partners for Humanity on a recycling
initiative focused on post-show product donations at the close of the three-day event, held January 24-26 in Las Vegas, Nevada at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center. The outstanding results of this inaugural program
speak for themselves and exceeded all expectations.

Mountain Re-Source Center solicited all S2 exhibitors prior to and during the show. The participating exhibitors were very generous, offering approximately 200,000 square feet of material which filled three 50-foot semitrailers to capacity. The total tonnage was about 120,000 pounds. The loads were delivered back to Gridley, California and Gassaway, West Virginia, to serve multiple families and community improvement efforts presently underway. Las Vegas Habitat for Humanity also partnered with one donor and collected a beautiful floor that will stay and benefit a local Las Vegas project.

S2 exhibitors were thrilled to be part of such an important and impactful program. Both small and large
companies actively participated with some of the major donations coming from …
* Beaulieu (9,000 square feet of carpet)
* Mannington Mills (9,000 square feet of flooring)
* Home Legend (5,400 square feet of flooring)
* Nature Flooring (3,500 square feet of flooring)
* Pergo (2,800 square feet of flooring)
* U.S. Floors (2,500 square feet of flooring)

Due to the extreme success, exhibitor participation and effective coordination by Mountain Re-Source Center on the SURFACES | StonExpo/ Marmomacc Americas show, there’s no question this initiative will become an annual event mainstay. Allyson Venugopal, Mountain Re-Source Center’s networking director, heard nothing but positive, encouraging remarks during the effort. “Among the many comments we heard, numerous companies admitted that this type of program is right in line with their business’ green policies. Knowing their products would bypass the landfill and instead benefit others clearly inspired a feeling of pride. The possibilities are limitless on how we can all work together to help communities and neighbors in need,” Venugopal shared, “and we are thankful to Hanley Wood Exhibitions, Freeman Companies and all of the S2 participating exhibitors for making this possible.”

Dana Teague, Group Director, Hanley Wood Exhibitions added, “Our shared S2 accomplishment is only amplified by the thought that its success could result in even more community involvement and corporate participation outside of the show. About 75% of the exhibitors participating indicated they wanted to discuss future donations! We are grateful to have had this opportunity, to all our exhibitors, and to Mountain Re-Source Center and Tile Partners for Humanity for all their work, coordination and volunteers. We will most definitely plan for this initiative in 2013.”

Additionally, the Mandalay Bay was successful in recycling 80% of the remaining materials left in both the Bayside and Shorelines Exhibit Halls (including residual cardboard, aluminum, paper, plastics, pallets, etc.).

For more information regarding the Mountain Re-Source Center and Tile Partners for Humanity, visit their websites at www.mountainre-source.org and www.tpfh.com. All donations are tax deductible.

Save the Date
The momentum is already building for SURFACES | StonExpo/Marmomacc Americas 2013, scheduled for January 29-January 31 at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center, Las Vegas, Nevada USA. For more information on SURFACES and StonExpo/Marmomacc Americas, visit us at www.Surfaces.com or www.StonExpo.com or follow us at @Surfaces_Show and @StonExpo.

About Sponsors and Endorsers
The official sponsor of SURFACES is the World Floor Covering Association (WFCA), the floor covering industry’s largest advocacy organization representing floor covering retailers, contractors and allied service providers throughout North America. The WFCA is a recognized leader in marketing research, industry certification programs, and operates the premier consumer flooring web site, www.wfca.org, providing unbiased information about every type of floor covering and connecting customers to members’ retail stores. The WFCA also influences public policy affecting the floor covering industry and consumers. For more information about the WFCA, visit www.wfca-pro.org.

StonExpo/Marmomacc Americas’ Official Sponsors are the Marble Institute of America (MIA) and Natural Stone Council. The mission of the MIA is to promote the use of natural stone and be the world’s most authoritative natural stone information resource. Membership in the association is worldwide and includes over 2,000 natural stone producers, exporters/importers, distributors/wholesalers, fabricators, finishers, installers, and industry suppliers—all committed to the highest standards of workmanship and ethics.

The Natural Stone Council, home of the Genuine Stone® brand, is the leader in the stone industry that represents the major associations who are committed to promotion and education of the industry and general public on the value and benefits of natural stone. Supporting member associations include: Allied Stone Industries, American Monument Association, Building Stone Institute, Canadian Stone Association, Elberton Granite Association, Marble Institute of America, National Building Granite Quarries Association, National Granite Manufacturers Association and Natural Stone Alliance.

StonExpo/Marmomacc Americas official endorsers are Marmomacc, Allied Stone Industries and The Concrete Countertop Institute.

About Veronafiere
Veronafiere (Verona Trade Fair Company) is Italy’s most important direct organizer of trade shows and among the top organizers in Europe. Founded in 1898, Veronafiere now focuses on economic sectors of primary importance to the Italian economy, including stone (Marmomacc), construction (Samoter), and wine (Vinitaly). Veronafiere conducts or hosts 37 trade shows a year in Verona and 11 abroad. Annual turnover in 2007 was more than $110M.

Marmomacc is the global leader in natural and engineered stone materials and related technologies and design. Samoter is one of Europe’s major exhibitions of construction equipment and earth-moving machinery. Vinitaly is the largest wine trade show in the world. All three are owned and organized by Veronafiere.

About Hanley Wood
Hanley Wood is comprised of four platforms: Business Media, which publishes more than 30 magazines, featuring Builder, Remodeling and Architect magazine, along with related Web sites, e-newsletters, and conferences; Exhibitions, which produces marquee events such as World of Concrete, bringing residential and commercial construction professionals face-to-face with manufacturers, suppliers, distributors, and service providers, and also manages events in other industries; Market Intelligence, which collects and aggregates proprietary data sets that capture hundreds of pieces of profile and material information about housing developments in more than 75 housing markets; and Marketing, which plans, creates, and executes strategic and integrated marketing solutions for its clients. Visit www.hanleywood.com.

Waters Edge Launches Fluid, Easy to Navigate, New Website

Iowa-based Waters Edge, a state-of-the-art waterjet cutting, design and fabrication company, well known for murals and medallions produced with waterjet-cut hard surface materials, has recently launched a new website. The site highlights the company’s commitment to offering quality waterjet work, and the many benefits gleaned by incorporating this computer-driven, totally green process.

Waters Edge has a great opportunity to connect with members of the
architectural & design communities,” explained Jason Schaum, Business Development at Waters Edge. “We’re pleased that our redesigned website offers insight into our firm’s services in a user-friendly format. It’s important that visitors to our new website are made aware of the fact that anything that can be drawn can be reproduced using hard surface materials with our waterjet-cutting technology. And, these images can last virtually forever. For example, a corporate logo focally positioned within a tile or stone floor can waterjet-cut from the exact same products, and not only will blend in beautifully with the surrounding field tile… but also will last just as long as the entire floor does.”

The waterjet process itself consists of a computer-driven arm delivering a high pressure/high velocity stream of water capable of cutting through dense materials such as granite, glass, porcelain and stone. All cutting is “saved to disk” – meaning perfectly cut repeat work is always immediately available as long as the same types of original materials are available. No other cutting process is as precise for one, one hundred, or one thousand cut pieces.

Waterjet technology is quickly becoming a go-to resource, in particular for the creative specifier. Waters Edge has brought a new energy to this field. The new website presents an effective venue of accessing materials which explain the waterjet process, high-quality designs and examples of the creative procedure, and specific examples of work done with various methods and hard surface materials such as ceramic, stone, porcelain and mosaics.

All of this and more can be accessed by simply logging on to www.watersedge1.com. Or, call 319 752 8844 or email [email protected]

Daltile Debuts New Website

DALLAS (February 1, 2012) – Daltile has re-launched its website – www.daltile.com, the newest addition to the company’s expanding suite of digital tools that provide professionals and savvy consumers alike with easily accessible information and inspiration for tile and natural stone designs in both residential and commercial applications. Daltile’s new website enhancements map to the company’s overarching commitment to aid in the customer’s product selection process as quickly and efficiently as possible.

“At Daltile, we are constantly re-evaluating our current technologies and applying new enhancements where it makes sense for our customers,” said David P. Warren, Digital Marketing Manager, Dal-Tile Corporation. “Our new website is a direct response to our customers’ need for easy access to information, greater efficiency and real time design support, and has been redesigned to meet those needs with a new upgrades and features that offer simplified browsing and enhanced functionality.”

Highlights of the site renovation include the combination of all of Daltile’s breadth of product categories into one website for ease of finding the ‘right’ product visitors, detailed information pages designed to make it easy for visitors to quickly find the information they are looking for in one place, as well as an advanced product search tool set, allowing customers to fine tune their search results by series, product types, applications, colors sizes and more.

The new website also features a product Inspiration Gallery, which aggregates the creative visions inspired by Daltile products, offering a beautiful portfolio of room scenes that will trigger imaginative design and, ultimately, execution. Here users can browse through a categorized gallery of rooms and products with the ability to filter the room scenes by room type, product type or series and obtain room scene product information.

One of the most exciting features of the new website is the new Tile & Stone Visualizer which is a visualization tool for the viewing any product in any room that the visitor would like. This new visualization tool allows for the user to select a room type and specific image to place any of Daltile’s products on any surface. This includes the ability for a user to upload their own room scene, select a surface to lay tile and then apply that tile. Topping off the skinning of the surface, a specific grout from one of Daltile’s grout suppliers may be applied to the surface.

All of the capabilities from the past Daltile.com site are still available, but easier to navigate then ever before, including resources such as care and maintenance information, warranty details, architectural tools and dealer and distributor locator tools for those ready to purchase. Additionally, the site features LEED® tools with enhanced search methods to help customers find important product information that will help them obtain LEED® Credits.

To view Daltile’s new website, visit http://www.daltile.com.

Levantina Announces Photo Contest Winners and Contest Extension

Dallas, Texas-(January 23, 2012) – Levantina, a worldwide leader in the natural stone industry, launched a Customer Photo Contest in October 2011 and announced winners for November and December. The contest, which has been extended through February 2012, asks participants to submit completed project photos of materials purchased from one of the Levantina showrooms in Atlanta, Chicago or Dallas.
The contest winners included November winner Denise Piaschyk from DLP Interiors for her photo of kitchen countertops. Denise and her clients were looking for granite with bold movement and color to add richness and punch to their contemporary kitchen. They found all of those traits in the Barricato granite purchase from Levantina Dallas and her photo captured the material beautifully.

Denise Piaschyk from DLP Interiors was the November winner for this Barricato granite purchased from Levantina Dallas.


December Customer Photo Contest winner was Thomas Signature Homes for the outstanding shot of the material in their kitchen photo. Thomas Signature Homes, 2011 ARC Custom Home Builder of the Year, used Santa Cecilia Oro on the counters and island in their newest custom kitchen. This house is located in Dallas and the merchandise was purchased at the Levantina Dallas location.

Thomas Signature Homes was the December winner for this Santa Cecilia Oro granite for a custom kitchen, purchased at Levantina Dallas.


“I was so impressed by the quality of the entries we received in this contest and it was a pleasure to review such beautiful pictures of our material used in amazing settings,” said David Garcia, Levantina USA Manager
Through this contest, Levantina is inviting our customers to show how they turned a purchase of natural stone into something extraordinary. Winners received a $100 gift card for their project photo using a material purchased from Levantina. To enter the contest, participants must submit photos to [email protected] Along with the photograph, the following information is needed: description of photo, name of photographer, what material was used & what Levantina location it was purchased at, where is the project located & some little about the project.
The photo contest continues until February 2012.

About Levantina
Levantina is a worldwide leader in the Natural Stone industry. Being leaders of the largest world reserve of marble and dominating the latest technologies of extraction, industrialization and selection of Natural Stone, allows Levantina to offer a wide range of products including marble, granite, limestone, onyx, travertine and slate. Levantina has an extensive global presence and directly owns & operates 63 quarries globally including the industry’s most popular product, Crema Marfil. Levantina also has 9 strategically located high tech factories 40 distribution centers, 35 stone centers and over 1,700 employees worldwide. Levantina USA has showrooms located in Atlanta, Dallas and Chicago. For more information, visit www.levantina.com

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