As both a cook and a designer I often get asked about which materials are best for kitchen benchtops. My answer is always honed marble (my personal favourite varieties are statuary or Carrara) or soapstone. I really enjoy their mellow appearance set against the polished fixtures of my kitchen and its semigloss-painted cabinets.
Different Kinds Of Granite Benchtops
Granite benchtops used in both bathrooms & kitchens have high impact
A lot of people are not aware, however, that there are several different kinds of granite benchtops, which can be categorised according to two basic groups: solid granite, and granite veneer, both of which are quite stylish as well as practical.
Solid granite is, as to be expected, cut out of a single piece of granite, which means that there are not any other materials mixed in with the granite.
This type of granite is extremely durable, and is also both scratch and heat resistant making it very easy to clean.
The downside, however, is that solid granite has to be periodically resealed due to the frequent exposure to water it will receive in your kitchen or bathroom.
Solid granite comes in a variety of different colours, in some cases within the same stone since each solid granite stone can naturally have colour variations within it.
Granite veneer will not be as expensive since you will not have to replace the entire benchtop with this, but only the top of it.
And although these benchtops do use real granite, they also contain other materials which make them more durable and easier to maintain. These benchtops are also available in a variety of colours.
Granite benchtops are unique
In either case, granite benchtops are very unique - which is a big reason why they are becoming so popular - in that no stone is entirely identical (something like snowflakes).
The reason being because it is a natural material, and each stone will naturally have variations that make each and every piece one of a kind.
The Advantages Of Granite Benchtops
The best advantage is definitely the appearance.
Granite has a very beautiful and classic appearance that will complement just about any décor: whatever the already existing style of your bathroom of kitchen, a granite benchtop will likely fit, as well as spruce it up significantly. It also comes in enough of a variety of dark or light colours to match up with your existing colour scheme.
The next best advantage is likely its durability.
Granite endures well under all kinds of weather conditions: even drastic changes in temperature, humidity, and moisture will not faze your granite much. It is also able to hold a lot of weight, which will be a big advantage in kitchens used to preparing large meals.
A third advantage, maybe not completely separate from the first, is that it will add an air of sophistication to your home and perhaps even to your person.
Despite the fact that granite is now actually reasonably affordable, granite still comes off as a symbol of wealth and prosperity.
The final advantage of granite is that it can be cut to suit your needs, whatever they are.
It is not a problem to customize unusually shaped granite benchtops if you have an untypical bathroom or kitchen space.