Renowned for its beauty since the time of the Romans – travertine tile is still considered one of the most beautiful and affordable stone flooring materials available. It has been used on structures throughout Europe for centuries. More modern structures have also embraced the material including the Shell-Haus in Berlin, the Sears Tower in Chicago – now known as the Willis Tower – and the famed Getty Center in California.
Travertine is prized by designers, architects and homeowners for a variety of reasons. Here is just a small sampling:
A Wide Variety of Colors
Travertine exists in all of our favorite layered neutral palettes: white, tan, cream and even rusty varieties. In addition, the effects of the sun and the rain can even enhance these colors. For example, the Basilica of the Sacred heart in Paris was specifically constructed from a particular grade of travertine that glows white after several years of exposure. The result provides one of the most truly awesome vistas in the entire City of Light.
The Stone is Resilient
While travertine is technically a limestone, its visual features make it resemble marble and it is oftentimes mistaken for this latter material to the point where it is commonly referred to as travertine marble. Travertine is the majority stone used in the Colosseum in Rome – a building that has lasted over 2,000 years despite centuries of weather, pollution and downright neglect. In short, it can stand up to any abuse that you, your family and your guests can dish out.
It Can be Polished & Smoothed
This stone has a naturally rough texture, showcased in the tumbled travertine finish, which is ideal for outdoor applications and areas where a more organic look is desired. It can also be honed and filled to provide a cleaner and less textured look without sacrificing dimension. Modern sealants and coatings keep the stone looking pristine even under the constant wear of dropped drinks and ground-in dirt.
It Works Well in Bathrooms
Far more affordable than marble, travertine is being used in numerous ways on the walls of 21st century homes. In particular, walls of glass-enclosed showers use the material to highlight the shower and provide a focal point for the room.